Balkinization  

Thursday, July 30, 2020

President Pelosi

Gerard N. Magliocca

The President, not being known for thinking through anything, suggests this morning that the presidential election be delayed. Let's run with this hypothetical, shall we?

Congress can delay the presidential election. What Congress cannot do is extend the President's or the Vice-President's term in office. Thus, on January 20th the pending terms would expire. What would that mean?

First, Nancy Pelosi would become President. The Presidential Succession Act of 1947 (read in conjunction with Section Three of the Twentieth Amendment) says that if there is no President-elect or Vice-President Elect when the President's term expires then the next-in-line (The Speaker of the House) becomes President. Basically, then, the President is saying that he wants Nancy Pelosi to become the next President. (Unless you think that the Presidential Succession Act is unconstitutional, but we can save that angle for another time.)

Ah, but what if the President means that all federal elections should be delayed? Then there would be no House of Representatives in January and no Speaker of the House. (There would also, of course, be no Senator Mitch McConnell, as his term expires at the end of the year.) Then what's left of the Senate would choose the new President, as the President pro tempore is fourth-in-line of succession. (Right now that would mean President Grassley, though someone else could get picked.)

I think we have to accept that the President will not admit defeat in November (when the election will, in fact, occur) if he loses. The "transition" will therefore be a disaster. As Gibbon once said of Rome, "bizarreness masquerades as creativity."


Comments:

There are 23 R Senators up for re-election this Fall, so the Dems will control the Senate come Jan 3 in the absence of an election (or a coup). Note that the Constitution does not require that the Senate choose a Senator as President pro tem.
 

افضل شركة تنظيف في الرياض
تعتبر شركتنا من افضل الشركات الموجوده داخل المملكة لانها تمتلك خدمات ليست موجوده داخل اي شركة اخري وذلك يساعدها في انجاز اكبر كمية من العمل في وقت واحد وذلك لانها لديها كمية من العمالة ليست متوفرة ايضا لدي اي شركة اخري وتستخدم شركتنا افضل المنظفات التي نستوردها من الخارج وذلك لتقديم افضل الخدمات واستخدام افضل مواد التعقيم والمطهرات للمحافظه علي سلامة عملائنا .

شركة الصفرات للتنظيف بالرياض

شركة الصفرات لتنظيف الفلل بالرياض

شركة الصفرات لتنظيف المنازل بالرياض

شركة الصفرات لتنظيف الشقق بالرياض

 

افضل شركة مكافحة حشرات ورش المبيدات
لدي شركتنا قسم خاص بمكافحة الحشرات ورش المبيدات وهي خدمة متميزة لدينا لان شركتنا تستخدم افضل انواع المبيدات الحشرية غير الضارة للانسان التي تقضي علي الحشرات نهائيا لاطول فتره ممكنة سواء كانت حشرات زاحفة مثل الفئران والنمل والزواحف بصفة عامة او حشرات طائره مثل الذباب والناموس بشكل عام

شركة الصفرات لمكافحة الحشرات بالرياض

شركة الصفرات لرش المبيدات بالرياض


 

افضل شركة تنظيف وعزل خزانات بالرياض
تصنف شركتنا من اوائل الشركات المتخصصة في تنظيف الخزانات وذلك بسبب الجودة التي تتمتع بها الشركة في تقديم خدماتها وتستخدم شركتنا افضل المطهرات في تنظيف الخزانات وتطهيره من الجراثيم بحيث ان يكون صالح للاستخدام الادمي دون الخوف من الجراثيم التي قد تسبب الامراض كما ان لدي الشركة خدمة كشف التسربات التي تساعد الافراد علي التخلص من مشاكلها المؤثرة في المنزل وتحرص الشركة علي من وسلامه عملائها

شركة الصفرات لتنظيف الخزانات بالرياض

شركة الصفرات لعزل الخزانات بالرياض

شركة الصفرات لكشف التسربات بالرياض


 


עזוב אותנו. אנחנו לא גרים בריאד.
 

I was going to ask what the split would be in that scenario come January.

Picking a non-member as speaker or pro tempore comes up from time to time. I think that would be a dubious move, but the text doesn't make it crystal clear that it cannot be done. I would avoid it as violating constitutional understanding as soundly applied, except maybe in some special circumstance that doesn't immediately come to mind.

The Constitution doesn't set up a possibility of members of the House to be temporarily filled without an election as can be done with senators. This is a bit of a quirk that can be problematic in the case of a national disaster. The states can have immediate elections, if necessary, but it can be messy.
 

Your scenario only happens if the election is basically canceled, not just "delayed". If the election were delayed by a couple of weeks or even a month, everything goes on as normal. (Albeit on a compressed schedule.) The electors don't vote until mid-December, after all.

Not that I think this is a serious proposal. I do wish sometimes the President wouldn't blue-sky in public.

He may even have proposed this just to stampede Democrats into locking themselves into the position that November 3rd is set in stone, and no delay can be contemplated. Since they have been talking about various schemes where late arriving mail in votes would be counted.

A lot of the stupid stuff he talks about is just to keep his foes running around like chickens with their heads cut off, instead of calming down and thinking things through. He thrives on the chaos, and so likes to shake things up.
 

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"A lot of the stupid stuff he talks about is just to keep his foes running around like chickens with their heads cut off,"

Or maybe he's just stupid (or impulsive, which is maybe the same thing)? It's always interesting to watch how Birchers can equally conjure up facts unseen to accuse the other side of the always worst motives and devious conspiracies as they do the same to put a positive spin on what their side does.
 

"A person in the White House that "thrives on the chaos"

Remember Bircher Brett has said he wants to 'burn it all down' (when, of course, he's not drumming for authoritarian responses to hippies he thinks think the same, of course). So that chaos is likely a feature, not a bug in a candidate for people like him.
 

"thrive on the chaos"

A person in the White House that "thrives on the chaos," including in ways that leads to serious concrete harms, is not like other Republicans like Reagan, Bush or whatever. It is particularly bad. This is why people, not just 'the Left,' but even some on the Right (if not enough) think Trump is particularly bad.

OTOH, along with other things, such "owning the libs" is appreciated by some people.

===

It is unclear what happens if the election is delayed a month.

As has been noted, the election in November very well can be a strange one, including heavy use of absentee ballots which delay the final results. If you have an election day in early December, it is unclear if things will be ready for the scheduled mid-December Electoral College meeting. This underlines some value -- though someone like Sandy Levinson is upset about it -- in an extended period between Election Day and Inauguration Day.

You also have the possibility in at least one state to have a run-off election in the Senate, which very well might affect control in the Senate. If the results take time, and you don't even have the first election until early December, the final Senate count might not be known by late January, if that. Control of Congress could be particularly important when the electoral college votes are counted and any end of the term shenanigans arise.

Anyway, we already have struggles to deal with, and not having the election at all on the scheduled day will add to the "chaos" and distrust of the results as a whole. This is dangerous, but "oh well, silly Trump, there he goes again."
 

The fact that the VP is not a Senator (pace Mr. 4th Branch) leads me to conclude that the President pro tem need not be either. Yes, they always have been, but that's less definitive in my mind because the position is largely ceremonial and has been by tradition given to the senior Senator of the majority party.
 

This can become bit messy indeed. But, I don't see right now, any fundamental constitutional conflict, between the Twentieth Amendment and the law. For the amendment, in relevant part, provides, I quote:

".....and the Congress may by law provide for the case wherein neither a President elect nor a Vice President elect shall have qualified, declaring who shall then act as President, or the manner in which one who is to act shall be selected, and such person shall act accordingly until a President or Vice President shall have qualified."

And by the way, there is long list(in the law) beyond the speaker or other Congress member acting as pro tempore, I quote:

" If, by reason of death, resignation, removal from office, inability, or failure to qualify, there is no President pro tempore to act as President under subsection (b), then the officer of the United States who is highest on the following list, and who is not under disability to discharge the powers and duties of the office of President shall act as President: Secretary of State, Secretary of the Treasury, Secretary of War, Attorney General, Postmaster General, Secretary of the Navy, Secretary of the Interior, Secretary of Agriculture, Secretary of Commerce, Secretary of Labor."

One may reach by the way, the act, here:

http://www.congressionaltimeline.org/Documents/80th_07181947_doc1_pg1-2.pdf

Thanks



 


So, just emphasizing it:

The act itself, is providing by law, the right procedure, how to elect a president in such case. And that is what the constitution provides, that:

"....the Congress may by law provide" .

And by the way, the act itself, does not provide for electing vice president it seems in such case. But, according to the constitution, the same parameters for eligibility are needed (for the vice as the president). So, what if the president elected, shall pick up a vice, that is not constitutionally, eligible. This is also problematic.
 

The VP being a presiding officer is a somewhat troubling constitutional quirk that is particularly spelled out. The VP is even selected by the Senate when the electoral vote is unable to elect that position. It is a special case baked in.

I don't really know how much that tells us regarding if Mark Field at this point can be chosen as the pro tem of the Senate. The basic sensible rule is that the pro tem would be chosen from among the membership. Maybe, that isn't the rule in each state, but it seems to be the well recognized assumption, one accepted by long precedent.

The position is largely ceremonial but like the Chief Justice presiding over an impeachment trial, not completely so.

https://fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/RL30960.pdf


Anyway, here, it would not be so. Truman among others accepted the current presidential secession rules in part because the two congressional options were elected and had support as leaders of national institutions. To toss that in.

Selecting outsiders to serve as the ceremonial heads of legislative institutions seem like a joker that was never done in this case for a reason. But, I will grant the text seems to technically leave it open and maybe one day this will be useful.
 

"Or maybe he's just stupid (or impulsive, which is maybe the same thing)?"

He won the election in 2016, which by itself should be enough for any rational person to consider that a really unlikely conclusion.

I've personally never understood the impulse towards trash talking one's opponent prior to a competition, but trash talking them after they won seems even more inexplicable; Whatever you claim they are is what was enough to beat you, after all.

Question his morals, his taste in interior decorating, and so forth, but to claim that he's stupid or incapable of planning is just flat out irrational.

Still, it really is one of his greater political assets that his foes are committed to underestimating him.
 

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Simply put, the word "stupid" (don't call me stupid! ... okay Otto*) has various connotations, so just because someone has some skills, the word very well can fit.

People various degree stupid, or impulsive, can very well gain success. It might in certain cases --- such as in sports or yes politics -- even have short term benefits.

As to "trash talking," discussing a person's qualities is sort of typical in elections, including allegations based on little that a person is a 'felon' or some such. It feels like a decade ago, but not sure Brett avoided badmouthing Hillary Clinton, Barack obama et. al. here during election seasons anyway.

---

* Movie reference.
 

This entire situation is a nice demosntration (like slavery) of why the wrong side won the Revolutionary War. A parliamentary system is just ridiculously superior to all of this.

Having said this, some predictions:

1. The election will be held on schedule.

2. If President Trump loses, he will leave office and Biden will become President on the regularly scheduled Inauguration Day.
 

"He won the election in 2016, which by itself should be enough for any rational person to consider that a really unlikely conclusion."

This is a profoundly stupid or dishonest comment. And you know what, Bircher Brett has made it many times over the years (he used to make it during the Bush years too). So I'm starting to lean towards the idea that it's equal parts both, at least.

As has been retorted every time it's been made, an election is not a contest of wits or intelligence. Winning one doesn't prove one's intelligence at all, any more than Britney Spears winning the top spot on album or singles demonstrates that she can't be stupid. Heck, we've had more than a fair share of Presidents who seem to have been fairly stupid that one could name.

At some point Trump's many stupid comments should just be evaluated with Occam's Razor. The guy is not that bright.
 

Dilan does not predict just when Trump will leave office. The possibilities range all the way from tomorrow to January 20. I'm inclined to think he will resign on fabricated health reasons soon after the election in order to cash a broad pardon from Acting President Pence, on his way to some tropical paradise without an extradition treaty with the US. Perhaps this assumes too much rationality.
 

It seems to me that, given the hypothetical we're discussing, selecting Joe Biden as President pro tem -- who would then succeed to the presidency -- would be more legitimate, and would comply more faithfully with the various texts, than the selection of a random Senator out of the remaining Democrats.

Admittedly the hypothetical is unlikely to happen, but the OP *is* a law professor. :)
 

Question his morals, his taste in interior decorating, and so forth, but to claim that he's stupid or incapable of planning is just flat out irrational.

He is certainly excellent at self-promotion.

Beyond that I don't think he has any particular intellectual abilities. It's not like Trump was sitting there during the campaign, planning ad buys, budgeting, or deciding how his time might best be spent, who should be campaigning for him where, or doing the other sorts of things we might associate with planning a campaign. He roused his base. Period.

As for the rest, he's plainly quite ignorant, and his business career demonstrates that he is incompetent at actually running anything. His notion that being able to remember five words and recite them back is a hallmark of genius suggests he has little idea of what intellectual skill even is.

My guess is that he made the suggestion, for whatever reason, without really knowing that he lacks the power to delay the election.
 

As has been retorted every time it's been made, an election is not a contest of wits or intelligence. Winning one doesn't prove one's intelligence at all, any more than Britney Spears winning the top spot on album or singles demonstrates that she can't be stupid.

This depends on what you mean by "intelligence".

Yes, it is obviously true that you don't need to have Einstein level intelligence to win popularity contests, either in politics or music.

Having said that, liberals have a long habit of calling Republican politicians stupid. Agnew, Reagan, W Bush, and now Trump. And at some point, I would hope that people might have a little self-reflection that maybe what they are doing is undervaluing certain forms of intelligence.

For instance, I think President Trump has extensive knowledge as to personal branding, how to use television, and some other skills that helped him attain the office. (And to attack the other part of the example, Britney Spears is actually a far better artist than a lot of people think. It is really difficult to consistently create earworm music, as well as to perpetuate one's career at the very top of the music industry. A lot of the artists and bands that hipster types and critics like more than they like Britney Spears have literally no skills in that department, which is why they can't sell records like she can.)

The point is, people define a lot of characteristics that are a part of human intelligence as something else. It doesn't just happen to conservatives. A famous example of this is black athletes, who have long been dismissed by some fans as "natural talents" when in fact they were extremely intelligent and applied that intelligence to the strategic and mental aspects of the games they played.
 

Dilan does not predict just when Trump will leave office. The possibilities range all the way from tomorrow to January 20. I'm inclined to think he will resign on fabricated health reasons soon after the election in order to cash a broad pardon from Acting President Pence, on his way to some tropical paradise without an extradition treaty with the US. Perhaps this assumes too much rationality.

If I were a White House Counsel to ANY President, I would recommend they resign from office on January 19 and accept a pardon from the Vice President.
 

A famous example of this is black athletes, who have long been dismissed by some fans as "natural talents" when in fact they were extremely intelligent and applied that intelligence to the strategic and mental aspects of the games they played.

Comparable falsehoods about black musicians are also widespread.

There is a pattern of ascribing black success solely to natural gifts, rather than the application of intelligence and hard work.

It's a commonplace observation, at least in baseball, that for some fans, sportswriters, and announcers, a "gifted athlete" is always black, and a "gritty competitor" is white.
 

"And at some point, I would hope that people might have a little self-reflection that maybe what they are doing is undervaluing certain forms of intelligence."

I guess the low cunning and willingness to pander to racists is one form of "intelligence". But I don't think it's what most people mean. Using the common connotation, Trump is stupid. Reagan and Bush were gullible, ignorant about things they should have known to be President, and incurious.
 

Dilan's 'actually Britney Spears is actually very smart' in defense of Trump's intelligence is enough to let everyone know this is another in his silly uber-Slate Hot Takes Series.
 

Spears is a great example *deconstructing* Dilan's latest uber-Slate Hot Take. She was a former child star on the Mickey Mouse Club. Her connections helped her get hooked up with a trio of producers who had a string of pop hits. They wrote the lyrics and music of the songs of her hit album under the management of her major record company which was seeking to develop the next Tiffany. She had extensive voice coaching paid for by the record company. She sang the songs in a studio after coaching and with augmentation, the producers then put it to music, hired people to make some video's where the very attractive Spears was featured (maybe her admittedly fine looks are her intelligence?) in the every popular teen-in-private-school outfit gyrating. The catchy songs and attractive singer got over. She was huge for a brief while under producers and managers and choreographers, lip syncing and following their directions. She made awful personal decisions (in the areas producers and choreographers can't help with). And then her career fell of a cliff.

Dilan couldn't have embraced a better analogy for someone like the Donald.

Presidents and their campaigns are more akin to *marketing* than to intelligence. Of course there's intelligence to marketing, lots actually. But it's in the marketers, not what they are marketing (consider several actual dogs have risen to tremendous fame under smart, well coordinated marketing campaigns). Concluding Presidents must be smart if their marketing campaign succeeds is like concluding Spuds Mackenzie must be a genius.


 

I recall an interview with mega-pop producer Maurice Starr. He talked about how he produced the fame of New Edition, producing nearly every aspect of the band. He mused that a white 'New Edition' would make more money, and so he just made one: the New Kids on the Block.

Needless to say, both bands topped the 80's charts many times. Of course, they were all geniuses!
 

Btw-this isn't to say that some of the Presidents criticized for not being smart didn't have other gifts. The scene in Oliver Stone's W where W remembers all the frat brothers names is an example (of course, without his connections that would probably have led him to be perhaps the best regional car salesman several years in a row). Also, it's true that traditional intelligence is not only not the only thing one should choose one's leaders on, in fact it can easily be rightly overrided by other qualities. It's also true that there are lots of major Democrats of suspect intelligence in the traditional sense.

What I think can't be denied though is that the modern conservative movement has more and more embraced (or been willing to ignore) greater and greater amounts of anti-intellectualism. Seeing themselves as perpetually 'screwed' by 'the establishment' they are very suspicious and increasingly hostile to the kind of professional norms and auspices of the kinds of experts that such an 'establishment' must rely on. To the extent that this is a good thing depends on how much one values what 'experts' have to offer.
 

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Gerard: The President, not being known for thinking through anything, suggests this morning that the presidential election be delayed. Let's run with this hypothetical, shall we? Congress can delay the presidential election. What Congress cannot do is extend the President's or the Vice-President's term in office. Thus, on January 20th the pending terms would expire. What would that mean?

Assuming the delayed election would not be completed by then.

First, Nancy Pelosi would become President.

Or Kevin McCarthy, presuming the general election is completed by the January 3 start of the new Congress. Remember the balance of the 2018 Dem House majority won very narrow elections when college educated Dems showed up at general election rates. The Dems lost every House special election in 2020 now that the Trump supporters have regained interest in voting.

Ah, but what if the President means that all federal elections should be delayed? Then there would be no House of Representatives in January and no Speaker of the House. (There would also, of course, be no Senator Mitch McConnell, as his term expires at the end of the year.) Then what's left of the Senate would choose the new President, as the President pro tempore is fourth-in-line of succession. (Right now that would mean President Grassley, though someone else could get picked.)

Grassley would be a good stand-in until Trump is reelected.

I think we have to accept that the President will not admit defeat in November (when the election will, in fact, occur) if he loses. The "transition" will therefore be a disaster. As Gibbon once said of Rome, "bizarreness masquerades as creativity."

You mean like Hillary! and the Dems refused to accept defeat in 2016 and have waged a series of campaigns to spy on, undermine and depose the elected POTUS?

 

Yeah, fine, go ahead and think he's an idiot. It's not like I actually want Democrats to take him seriously.

But Dilan is right, you seldom indeed encounter celebrities who are actually "stupid". Mind, part of this is that intellectuals tend to genuinely not realize just how stupid you actually have to be, to legitimately qualify as "stupid", in a world where the average IQ is only 100. And how little somebody's manner of speaking tells you about their IQ.
 

Yeah, fine, go ahead and think he's an idiot. It's not like I actually want Democrats to take him seriously.

Or, a range of non-Democrats, apparently.

The original comment by Mr. W. suggested that he was "stupid" or "impulsive." Brett, who suggested a rather open-ended meaning for "Indians not taxed" now has a narrow view of "stupid" to mean a blathering idiot or something.

This isn't really necessary. A person can be "stupid" in a variety of ways while having certain abilities. A person can be quite talented and be "impulsive." That is a limited bit of "trash talking." Brett himself sighed at Trump "blue skying" in public. Whatever that means. Comes off as Trump being a bit too "impulsive."

But Dilan is right, you seldom indeed encounter celebrities who are actually "stupid".

Maybe, and with respect Brett's Alice in Wonderland use of language is confusing, if you provide some narrow meaning of "stupid." Otherwise, not so much. Having natural talent and smarts in some limited area doesn't mean one is highly intelligent in all ways. A baseball player or actor or someone who does commercials or someone successful in some business can very well not be smart in a variety of ways. They need not be.

Mind, part of this is that intellectuals tend to genuinely not realize just how stupid you actually have to be, to legitimately qualify as "stupid", in a world where the average IQ is only 100.

This is not a matter of elitism. Trump repeatedly shows himself not be be on the ball here next to your average person. Dilan repeatedly appeals to authority, then opines on things he isn't as expert about, but we don't need to go there. The average person on the street has cause to think Trump not very smart. Some of them will actually agree with his basic positions or be neutral. It isn't some "Democratic" thing.

Anyway, again, by Brett's own words, Trump appeals to "chaos." On some level, this works for him, so is "smart" in a limited fashion. But, in general, Trump does not come off as very smart. This isn't even a big deal on some level. It's just one more thing. It is probably even worse that he can't control himself. The lack of impulse control is often a lot more problematic.
 

"You mean like Hillary! and the Dems refused to accept defeat in 2016 and have waged a series of campaigns to spy on, undermine and depose the elected POTUS?"

This is the kind of laughable propaganda we've come to expect from 'Persons means one thing in Sec. 1 of the 14th and a different thing in Sec. 2 [even though Sec. 1 explicitly distinguishes between the two]).
 

I guess the low cunning and willingness to pander to racists is one form of "intelligence". But I don't think it's what most people mean. Using the common connotation, Trump is stupid. Reagan and Bush were gullible, ignorant about things they should have known to be President, and incurious.

And I think anyone who makes a comment like this isn't very self-aware. Basically you are defining "the sorts of smarts Mark Field has" as the definition of intelligence, and not understanding that there are other forms of intelligence that you don't respect but which are very much related to success in this world.
 

actually Britney Spears is actually very smart


A whole bunch of people have tried to have the career Britney has had, and failed. And BTW, in the industry, she is known as having an insane work ethnic.
 

Spears is a great example *deconstructing* Dilan's latest uber-Slate Hot Take. She was a former child star on the Mickey Mouse Club. Her connections helped her get hooked up with a trio of producers who had a string of pop hits. They wrote the lyrics and music of the songs of her hit album under the management of her major record company which was seeking to develop the next Tiffany. She had extensive voice coaching paid for by the record company. She sang the songs in a studio after coaching and with augmentation, the producers then put it to music, hired people to make some video's where the very attractive Spears was featured (maybe her admittedly fine looks are her intelligence?) in the every popular teen-in-private-school outfit gyrating. The catchy songs and attractive singer got over. She was huge for a brief while under producers and managers and choreographers, lip syncing and following their directions. She made awful personal decisions (in the areas producers and choreographers can't help with). And then her career fell of a cliff.

Spears is:

1. An excellent dancer.

2. Extremely charismatic.

3. An extremely good songwriter. (For example, see this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8YzabSdk7ZA . And by the way, she plays the piano part herself in her shows.)

4. A famously hard worker.

But, you can believe what you want about her. And no, her career didn't end up in the toilet- she went for 15 years, which is a lot longer than most artists do at the top echelon of music. Her Vegas residency was extremely successful too.
 

What I think can't be denied though is that the modern conservative movement has more and more embraced (or been willing to ignore) greater and greater amounts of anti-intellectualism.

I very much agree with this as a criticism of the conservative movement. (See, e.g., global warming, or masks FFS.)

But that's different from saying that successful conservative politicians are not smart. They are.
 

"you seldom indeed encounter celebrities who are actually "stupid"."

Again, this is laughable. Kim Kardashian, super-genius? Kayne, prodigy! I mean, Bircher Brett almost certainly doesn't mean this nonsense (especially given most celebrities are very far left).

"It's not like I actually want Democrats to take him seriously."

See, this is key to Bircher Brett's problem here. One need not be intelligent for one to warrant 'taking them seriously.' Of course those who don't like Trump should take him seriously. He's got a ton of money which will buy a ton of the experts and measures people like Bircher Brett think aren't valuable, and his campaign will once again be a marketing venture that could be successful. No one is naive to think that the smartest person wins every type of contest, and that's especially true when it's a popular (well, sort of) voting contest.

I'm not arguing Trump hasn't tapped into something. I think his main 'talent' as a politician is 'boldness.' He's willing to say things that other national politicians, being naturally risk adverse, won't. And that happens to be a huge feature, not a bug, to one of our ideologies right now. A fool rushing in is a great thing for conservatives (no pussy-footing around, that guy!).

Does this make conservatives stupid? Sort of. Definitely anti-intellectual and obtuse. But really what it makes them is angry. They're mad as heck and they're not going to take it anymore, and when you're mad you don't want some nuanced voice moderating that anger, you want someone who gives it voice. That's not *necessarily* a bad thing, btw! Much of what's valuable to human experience is a-rational.

But pretending that's not what's going on with conservatism is illusion.
 

"an insane work ethnic [sic, lol]" is not "intelligence." In the social sciences we call this a validity problem.

Again, an insane work ethic can easily be a more valuable thing than intelligence. But it ain't the same thing. Your offering them up as the same shows the paucity of your latest Slate Hot Take!
 

Dilan repeatedly appeals to authority, then opines on things he isn't as expert about, but we don't need to go there.

this is bulls**t on both ends.

I don't "appeal to authority", which is the name of an informal fallacy. I defer to expertise. That's different.

And I don't claim any expertise as to things I am not expert at. If some expert on human intelligence wants to weigh in here, I will defer. Absent that, I don't think my opinions are less worthy than yours here.
 

. Some of them will actually agree with his basic positions or be neutral. It isn't some "Democratic" thing.

Except Mark, in this thread, said that almost every Republican President was stupid. And he isn't alone in thinking this among Democrats.
 

Kim Kardashian, super-genius?

Kim Kardashian is really smart. She's built a billion dollar business and brand name on nothing at all, and is now getting her law license. The fact that you don't realize that makes precisely my point about how many liberals define "intelligence".
 

"An excellent dancer"

No, she's not. Her back up dancers are almost to a person better than her (that's actually why they're hired, they're so good they know how to look great while not showing her up). She's a *good* dancer who has a *ton* of help and direction and favorable depictions.

"Extremely charismatic"

Lol, really, I'm actually guffawing. You've likely never seen Britney in an unscripted, un-produced way (in her personal life this charismatic genius has operated on a trailer park level). You're like the lady who chooses her favorite films on what *actors* are in them rather than who *directed* them.

"An extremely good songwriter"

Her largest hits were, of course, written by other people. And heavily produced (which is far more important, most people don't care about the words of pop songs). By your own metric that shows she's not so good!

Look, I'm certainly not opposed to the idea of different intelligences, in fact I'm a *huge* devotee of the idea (I'm a psychologist, remember). But good grief, if you want to actually make this case instead of making a lazy Slate Hot Take pick someone like Prince or something. really, it's not hyperbole or argumentation here on my part, your Britney thing was *the* tell that your Don defense was just another of your Slate Hot Take exercises. It couldn't have been better.
 

Speaking only for myself, I think Britney Spears is significantly more intelligent than Trump. But then it's so hard to distinguish abject willful ignorance from mere substandard intellect. And I do not intend, by that, to denigrate the intellect of Ms. Spears.

I used to think getting elected required great cognitive skills...until I experienced the Nixon years, then the Carter years, then the Reagan years, and then learned in more depth about the JFK era, the Truman era, etc., etc. The final nail in that coffin was 2000. Let's be honest: it's far better to be lucky than intelligent, when it comes to these levels of success. I think Ms. Spears would agree.

But the subject is what actually would happen if the election were delayed, as Trump has suggested, without changing the Constitution in other ways (which, of course, is academic, since in order to change the date there would have to be Congressional action, and surely some effort would be made to avoid the kind of horror show the OP predicates.) (Which makes the question even more academic, as the current Congress is obviously incapable of managing to do anything of the sort.)

I'd bet anything I have that, if this scenario is explained to Trump (using short words and bullet points) we'd hear no more about delaying the election...

 

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"Kim Kardashian is really smart."

Keep digging, Dilan. Next up, China (look out for that Chinese Virus!).

I await your next hot take on the Taco Bell dog:

"Liberals often devalue how important it is to look right into the camera, to emote something important, even existential, that feeling we all feel when, tired and overworked we *want Taco Bell.* Liberal intellectuals like Mark Field snobbily assume that Taco Bell is barely legally defined meat in a cheap tortilla shell with a bare smattering of desiccated toppings and Fire sauce, and that no one could really 'want' it. But that Chihuahua sold *millions* of Tacos, making Taco Bell *billions* of dollars. That's proof he knows something the Mark Fields of the world don't: that craving for comfort in the late at night. That's real intelligence, and the reason why Josh Hawley is the next President is the Mark Fields of this world think Chipotle has a superior product."
 

"I very much agree with this as a criticism of the conservative movement. (See, e.g., global warming, or masks FFS.)

But that's different from saying that successful conservative politicians are not smart. They are."

Let's unpack this a bit. Dilan acknowledges an anti-intellectualism among the largest ideological faction in our society. He then argues that people successful in winning over this faction are surely smart.

See the problem? I guess he *could* be arguing that they are 'smart' to realize that there's this anti-intellectual fashion and to play to it. But of course, there's another simpler, Occam's Razor explanation for this: they share the anti-intellectual fashion, and that base knows the 'real thing' and reward them in what, in essence, is a popularity contest.

A line I heard recently: people like Ted Cruz only worked to pander to paranoid, anti-intellectual old white men, Trump *was one of them.* It was much more natural and easy for him.

Again, just to reiterate, I am not saying conservatism precludes great, even tremendous, intelligence. I said back in the primaries I thought Ted Cruz was about as intelligent as pols get. I also said I would have voted for Trump over him.

But I'm not going to pretend Trump is intelligent. To do so does violence to the term, and I'm not a post-modernist, a partisan incoherent, or looking to make a Slate Hot Take!!!.
 

Again, I'm almost reeling from the irony here because I'm such a *huge* fan of Gardner's multiple intelligences and find myself often debating with right wing trolls who reify the Bell Curve's g. But the idea that being elected or being famous necessarily shows Gardner's intelligences is...crazy.

Conservatives are the largest ideological faction in the US. That's not surprising given their biggest idea now is the protection of white male privilege, and that's demographically* a popular idea. That privilege is being challenged in recent times like never before, and it's produced a strong anger. That's what they're looking for in a candidate. Traditional intelligence and nuance is never seen as appealing to angry people.
 

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That lack of insight from Mark Field is going to hurt his chances of being the next Senate pro tem. Oops, he did it again.
 

" I mean, Bircher Brett almost certainly doesn't mean this nonsense (especially given most celebrities are very far left). "

Look, just because you judge intelligence by whether people agree with you doesn't mean I have to. Plenty of quite intelligent people disagree with me. Pete Singer may be a monster, but he's not a stupid monster.

There's a fine line between rationality and rationalization, and intelligence works on either side of it. Wisdom is, famously, not the same as intelligence, (Though they play well together.) and there are whole classes of mistakes you have to be smart to make, because they wouldn't even occur to stupid people.

The notion that one side of politics has a monopoly on smarts is the sort of mistake foolish smart people fall in love with.
 

"Look, just because you judge intelligence by whether people agree with you doesn't mean I have to."

"just to reiterate, I am not saying conservatism precludes great, even tremendous, intelligence. I said back in the primaries I thought Ted Cruz was about as intelligent as pols get."

I wrote this forty minutes before Bircher Brett did. Is he being dishonest or dense, I ask you?
 

"I'm such a *huge* fan of Gardner's multiple intelligences .... But the idea that being elected or being famous necessarily shows Gardner's intelligences is...crazy."

Ditto on both counts.
 

Adding, it's the same backwards reasoning by which Calvinists convinced themselves that being successful showed godliness.
 

Mr. W. flags a strawman, but perhaps if that's all you have, it's is sorta smart to use that approach. Maybe a bit impulsive though.
 

Amazing how frequently brilliant Democrats lose to idiot Republicans.
 

Her largest hits were, of course, written by other people. And heavily produced (which is far more important, most people don't care about the words of pop songs).

Now we are way off topic, but this is just an objection to modern music. Good modern music IS produced. They have these tools, they help make better records, and they use them, and they work.

Maybe you prefer the days of geezer rock when bands were more "authentic" and didn't use recording studio technology, but the fact that Britney Spears uses it and uses it well to make better records does not make her some sort of dumb robot. It makes her SMARTER than all the people out there who aren't use it and are making crappy records that sell 1/50th as many copies.
 

I used to think getting elected required great cognitive skills...until I experienced the Nixon years

"Nixon is dumb" takes the silly liberal definition of "smart" to new heights. At least most liberals I know concede Nixon was highly intelligent. He was venal, but highly intelligent.

At some point, this really does devolve into "I am brilliant and anyone who disagrees with my brilliant political ideas must be dumb".
 

Let's unpack this a bit. Dilan acknowledges an anti-intellectualism among the largest ideological faction in our society. He then argues that people successful in winning over this faction are surely smart.

Which is not a contradiction at all. Leaders are often smarter than their followers.
 

it's the same backwards reasoning by which Calvinists convinced themselves that being successful showed godliness.

Not at all. Because if one were to hypothesize the existence of a benevolent God, the smarts to become successful and exploit situations literally has nothing to do with benevolence.

In contrast, being smart definitely helps- A LOT- in being succesful. Doesn't guarantee success, but it helps.

Again, at bottom, this is about Mark Field DISLIKING forms of intelligence that lead to political results he does not like. So you define people you don't like as dumb. Doesn't mean they are dumb.
 

Amazing how frequently brilliant Democrats lose to idiot Republicans.

I hate to say this, but Bart shoots and scores with this one. Mark Field and Joe and Mista are sitting there like Jon Lovitz in that debate, saying "why do I keep losing to these guys?". Well, one easy way to lose in life is to go around thinking you are smart and everyone you don't like is an idiot. This is true in sports, it is true in business, and it is true in politics.
 

It's also amazing how frequently intelligent Republicans lose to idiot Republicans.

 

C2H5OH said...It's also amazing how frequently intelligent Republicans lose to idiot Republicans.

The only Republicans Democrats find intelligent are those who turn on their fellow Republicans.

This is how the Democrat media reformed Romney from the evil plutocrat of 2012 to the currently brilliant Republican Trump critic.
 

One broader point about this.

I think the ultimate problem- besides pure ego (anyone who disagrees with me must be stupid!)- is that liberals don't have respect for certain sorts of intelligence.

Business intelligence is a perfect example of this. Critiques of capitalism teach us- and I agree with this- that a lot of success in business is due to luck, inheritance, etc. From that, a lot of liberals convince themselves that successful people in business aren't actually "smart"; especially ones that don't have "real" elite credentials or pedigrees in areas like tech. (So, for instance, I have never heard people denigrate Bill Gates or Steve Jobs as dumb.)

But entertainment savvy is clearly another example. My father did a bit of television, and I, of course, have represented numerous people in the entertainment industry, both on the talent side and the production side. And most of the people I have dealt with are extremely smart with respect to the things that were relevant to their jobs. Successful musicians and singers have a great deal of knowledge about what makes a hit record. TV evangelists know what appeals inspire their flocks. People in the film and television industries are incredibly knowledgeable about what appeals to people, how the public will respond to different characterizations, and all sorts of subtle things like tone of voice and the like.

The point is, if you actually meet these people, you find that very few of them are dumb as a box of rocks. Indeed, I find that a lot of them have detailed understandings of subjects that I have only a superficial understanding of. I have learned a lot from my clients over the years.

But many liberals have this bias where "intelligence" is something that correlates to a certain sort of book learning, credentialism, and formal, academic style of speech.

You underestimate people's intelligence at your peril. Bart is exactly right that one reason Democrats lose a lot of winnable elections is because of this assumption that the Republican candidates are bumbling idiots when they are not.
 

Bart is exactly right that one reason Democrats lose a lot of winnable elections is because of this assumption that the Republican candidates are bumbling idiots when they are not.
# posted by Blogger Dilan : 9:05 PM


There isn't any evidence at all to support this nonsense. Even with Trump, who is clearly an idiot, the evidence is that Comey handed him the election.

It's doesn't take intelligence to be a ruthless racist asshole. Trump is racist as hell, and so is the United States. It's the perfect match.
 

"I hate to say this, but Bart shoots and scores with this one. "

I've always thought the true paucity of an argument can be seen when its just simply remade hours after it was responded to with no acknowledgement to the response. I've pointed out numerous times how one can be successful in various fields without being intelligent. Dilan, like Bart, just simply comes back to the Calvinistic (hat tip Mark) argument 'if they were successful they must be smart!' That Taco Bell dog is a genius!

"The only Republicans Democrats find intelligent are those who turn on their fellow Republicans."

The example I have here was Cruz, who certainly didn't turn on this fellow Republicans. People like Bircher Bart and Dilan just have a script they use regardless of its relevance. Such is the result of parrot propaganda and the Slate Hot Take!!.
 

"but the fact that Britney Spears uses it and uses it well to make better records does not make her some sort of dumb robot. It makes her SMARTER than all the people out there who aren't use it"

dilan, you've deconstructed yourself so much here. Yes, the 17 year old (when she was most successful and when it's clear she had the least hand in writing and producing her albums) Spears was such a genius! Second only to the Taco Bell dog (she 'used' only the best producers too!).
 

Dilan:

It isn’t that Republicans in the political class are particularly bright, but rather that their Dem counterparts are not remotely as smart as they believe themselves to be. See how Bill Barr recently dominated the House Judiciary Committee.
 

I guess we can now add the head of the Federalist Society to the list of Republicans we no longer think are stupid...


 

C2H5OH said...I guess we can now add the head of the Federalist Society to the list of Republicans we no longer think are stupid...

I don't understand Calbresi's problem with Trump's suggestion to delay the election. Nothing special about the current election date. There is no constitutional problem unless Trump attempted to stay in office past his term without an election.
 

Fascists don't think much about fascism just like fish don't think much about water.
 

There is no constitutional problem unless Trump attempted to stay in office past his term without an election.
# posted by Blogger Bart DePalma : 9:59 AM


What's the first step towards making that happen, you moron?

 

To move past Britney Spears and everything back to the specific issue.

Actually moving up the election, which never happened even when treasonous rebels controlled a chunk of U.S. territory, is not likely to happen. Republicans in Congress, from McConnell on down, said as much. It would be up to Congress here though there are various means (including the post office, now with a Trump appointee at the head) for Trump to throw a wrench into the works.

(Efforts to address the needs of the times to in various ways to change the rules somewhat repeatedly have actually been blocked, including in the courts. We just had another such case, with two justices dissenting on the record, yesterday.)

But, a basic result here is that Trump is being a "chaos" agent, to quote one of his supporters. He is overall seeding doubts of the results here. His conceit here is that we need to postpone the election to safeguard the results. The election not being postponed will be part of his argument in November that we should not trust the results. If the election turns on relatively close votes in a few states, we can imagine the effect of all of this. Or, what he will do November-January.

Again, on some basic level, who cares if he is "stupid" here as compared to crafty like a fox mixed in. It's a horrible and dangerous thing, even if people are amused he is "schooling the libs" or something. Political theorists from the beginning have discussed big picture things, including the overall ethos needed for a republican system of government to operate. The head of the executive department abusing his role in this fashion to be a chaos agent is not just head shaking amusing. It's underlines why Trump, not just anyone I disagree with, is a menace.
 

bb:

So long as Blue states do not shut down the polls as Obama threatened at the Lewis funeral, there is no reason to delay the election.
 

Bart DePalma12:17 PM
bb:

So long as Blue states do not shut down the polls as Obama threatened at the Lewis funeral, there is no reason to delay the election


And yet, here you are defending Trump for suggesting that we should.


 

Literally there is no constitutional issue with delaying the election, the election date is statutory, not constitutional.

It's something Congress would have to do, rather than the President. But, where did he say he would be the one to do it?

Nowhere, that's where. THAT part of it came out of the imagination of people who don't like Trump, and just assume the worst of everything he says. If he says he's driving to the corner store, you assume he means to speed, then rob it.

Like I said, I don't like him blue skying in public, but he may have just meant to get Democrats on record holding November 3rd to be unalterable, given all the talk about accepting ballots past that date.
 

What does that even mean, "accepting ballots past that date"? Absentee ballots often arrive after election day, but the actual vote took place when the ballot was filled out before election day.
 

Literally there is no constitutional issue with delaying the election, the election date is statutory, not constitutional.

If the delay was for a constitutionally problematic reason, yes, there could be a constitutional issue. So "literally" is overkill.

It's something Congress would have to do, rather than the President. But, where did he say he would be the one to do it?

Who will deal with these troublesome priests? Hey, where did he tell anyone to kill them? Anyway, actually postponing the election as not likely to happen was granted & the basic result of the comment suggested. One not told in a vacuum but as a part of continual related ones. So, this is particularly bullshit.

Nowhere, that's where. THAT part of it came out of the imagination of people who don't like Trump, and just assume the worst of everything he says. If he says he's driving to the corner store, you assume he means to speed, then rob it.

Person who repeatedly used his power in corrupt ways, including in ways to affect U.S. elections, says something like this & people fear he in some fashion will yet again corruptly act -- or as I just said it is a problem for a related reason -- is not exactly irrational.

But, Trump Law means giving Trump the benefit of the doubt to a silly degree except to be mildly upset about him maybe. Meanwhile, assume the worst about others, which is sort of a clear case of transference. They "don't like," like children, instead for years now provided extended explanations on merits.

Like I said, I don't like him blue skying in public

Your mild -- akin to thinking it a bit to hot in a room during the summer -- concern of him being a chaos agent is duly noted.

but he may have just meant to get Democrats on record holding November 3rd to be unalterable, given all the talk about accepting ballots past that date.

Okay Jan.
 

Ok, so the game is this: Trump will take the position that the only ballots which "count" are those counted on/by Election Day. If any ballots are counted thereafter, they are illegitimate. There are various sub-plots in motion to create confusion about the issue:

1. Some states want to preclude any count of absentee ballots prior to Election Day, thereby making it more difficult to get the tabulation in "timely".
2. The Postal Service will fail to deliver ballots before Election Day. This will mean ballots not counted in states which require delivery by then, and it will mean states which permit late arrival will have their votes declared "illegitimate".
3. Corollary to the above, states which permit late arrival will have those ballots declared presumptively illegitimate, whether caused by the Postal Service or not.
4. The usual R suppression of the vote will be in full force, but with added impetus from the pandemic.
5. R judges will declare that ballots not counted by Election Day are illegitimate.

To bring this around to the OP, I assume the same "reasoning" will apply to elections for Senate and House, thereby casting doubt on control of the Congress which is to certify the results.

Am I missing anything Brett?
 

The future Senate pro tem is just conspirator minded because he doesn't like Trump.

Seriously, the suggestion of Trump "blue skying" for that specific reason is interesting, though I don't think it was so narrow. Perhaps, that is some spin being promoting from some quarters. MF's reply does game out the possibilities pretty well.
 

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m fine with mail in voting, but I plan to vote in person, and I’ll be happy to crawl over the rotting COVID infected corpses of Brett and Sniffles if I have to. In fact, that sounds pretty good.

But Trump is trying to create doubt about the ass kicking that he is about to get. Hopefully the ass kicking is so bad that even the morons that still support him will realize that it’s over
 

Let's see how Faux News would handle this situation...

Faux News
 

The silence in response to my last comment seems pretty revealing.
 

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