Five Months of Trump: The Tipping Point
Five months into the Trump regime, we've reached the tipping point. It may take more than a year to play out, but the presidency of Donald Trump is coming to an end. Meantime, congressional Republicans -- acknowledging the Administration is running out of runway -- have decided to ram through as much toxic legislation as they can while Trump is in the White House.
Friday, June 16, 2017(2 comments)
When Will Trump Lose His Base?
After the Trump White House careened through another terrible week, Washington insiders wonder how long Trump can survive. The answer is: as long as he holds his base. Trump and his voters are locked in a deadly embrace: his base desperately wants to believe he will address their grievances and Trump is willing to lie to keep their support.
Friday, June 9, 2017(1 comments)
Angry Trump, Angry Supporters
Five months into the Trump presidency, Donald's erratic behavior has spawned an avalanche of "what's wrong with Trump" theories. Rather than speculate on his psyche, it's sufficient to label Trump: an angry man whose actions are fueled by the anger of his supporters.
Friday, May 26, 2017
The Four Faces of Trump
After four enervating months of Donald Trump's presidency, Americans have seen four different sides of Trump.
Friday, May 19, 2017(2 comments)
Preparing for Trump's Coup
In the fifties, in Los Angeles schools, students routinely participated in civil defense drills. We were taught "appropriate" actions to take in the event of a Russian nuclear attack, such as "duck and cover." Sixty years later, many Americans are bracing for Donald Trump's attack on the foundations of our democracy. How will we respond when Trump uses some traumatic event as an excuse to claim dictatorial power?
Berkeley Gets Trolled
"What's happening to Berkeley? Are you safe?" our friends ask. National headlines scream: "Riots in Berkeley!" "The Death of Free Speech!" Yes, something is happening in Berkeley. We've been trolled by the hard right. And our "leaders" haven't responded effectively. Now it's time for the true defenders of free speech to step forward.
Friday, April 21, 2017(3 comments)
Reaching Out to Trump Voters
On April 17th, my Berkeley Indivisible group hosted a two-hour discussion on "Reaching out to Trump voters," featuring UC professors Arlie Hochschild and George Lakoff. Participants learned how to approach a group that some consider a lost cause.
Friday, April 14, 2017(1 comments)
While the Media Slept
Donald Trump has called the mainstream media "the enemy." But since January 20th, the media has been Trump's best friend because they have, in the main, ignored the big stories about his disastrous presidency.
Friday, March 31, 2017
Inside Devin Nunes
One of the bizarre consequences of the Congressional investigation into the connections between the Trump presidential campaign and Russia is the media attention given to a banal Republican congressman, Devin Nunes. As the chair of the House Intelligence Committee, Nunes has singlehandedly blocked the House investigation into the Trump-Russia affair.
Saturday, March 25, 2017(1 comments)
Trump's Huge Failure
After promising to "repeal and replace Obamacare on day one [of his presidency]", Donald Trump suffered an ignominious rejection on day 64.
Indivisible: Social Action Startup
Some of the most exciting days of my life occurred in the late 80's when I was involved in a technology startup, Cisco Systems. 29 years later I'm involved in another exciting startup, Indivisible.
Friday, March 3, 2017(18 comments)
Trump's Kremlin Konnection
In "Hamlet," Shakespeare wrote, "The lady doth protest too much, methinks." What fun Shakespeare would have with Donald Trump! Imagine a play where Trump, the character, tries to dismiss his ties with Russia, and Shakespeare responds, "The scoundrel protests too much."
Friday, February 24, 2017(4 comments)
Coping with Trump Stress Disorder
A month into the Trump Administration, many Americans are stressed out. A recent study by the American Psychological Association revealed, "More Americans reporting symptoms of stress and citing personal safety and terrorism as sources of stress." 57 percent of respondents said "the current political climate is a very or somewhat significant source of stress."
Friday, February 17, 2017
One Month of Trump
28 days into the Trump regime it's worse than expected. Here's what we've learned.
Friday, February 3, 2017
Trump's Immigration Policy Leads to War
In the wake of Donald Trump's abrasive January 27th immigration order, some critics have described a White House in chaos and characterized Trump's policy czar, Steve Bannon, as "in his over his head." Wrong. Trump and Bannon know exactly what they are doing. Trump's immigration orders portend a devastating campaign against immigrants, one that will lead to war in the Middle East.
Friday, January 27, 2017
Trump's First Week
To get an idea of what to expect from Donald Trump for the next four years, we only have to examine his first week in office.
Tuesday, January 24, 2017(3 comments)
Understanding Trump Voters
In the days after the November 8th disaster, Berkeley liberals shook their heads and muttered, "We must talk to Trump voters; we've got to understand them." But we faced a common problem, we didn't know anyone that voted for Trump. Fortunately, UC Berkeley Sociology professor Arlie Hochshild, did our work for us. In "Strangers in Their Own Land" Hochschild studies Trump's Tea Party supporters.
Friday, January 20, 2017(1 comments)
It's Midnight in America
33 years ago, Ronald Reagan was elected President in large part because of his TV ad, "It's morning in America." "It's morning again in America, and under the leadership of President Reagan, our country is prouder and stronger and better." For many Americans, the inauguration of Donald Trump foretells a period of darkness, "It's midnight in America."
Tuesday, January 17, 2017(2 comments)
Lessons Liberals Learned
It's been over two months since the devastating presidential election; time enough for liberals to ask each other, "What lessons did we learn?" Four come to mind.
Thursday, January 12, 2017(3 comments)
Meet Trump's Politburo
For your convenience, here's a guide to the working relationships that will guide the Trump presidency:
Thursday, January 5, 2017(2 comments)
California vs Trump
On election day, Californians favored Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump by a near 2 to 1 margin -- 61.7 percent to 31.6 percent. Now, faced with a President many of us detest, California's best stance is to become a model of Democratic principles. But the Golden State faces intriguing challenges.
Trump and Hitler
It's impossible to read Volker Ulrich's remarkable biography, "Hitler, Ascent: 1889-1939," without being struck by the parallels between Adolph Hitler and Donald Trump.
Friday, December 16, 2016(1 comments)
From Russia With Love: Donald Trump
As Donald Trump's inauguration looms, there's been a lot of speculation about the nature of his relationship with Russia. Trump has frequently spoken of his admiration for the President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin; Trump refers to Russia as a "partner" rather than an "adversary." Meanwhile, the CIA believes that Russian hackers helped Trump win the election. What's going on?
Tuesday, December 13, 2016(2 comments)
What do Trump Voters Want?
Election exit polls tell us the typical Trump voter was white (non-Hispanic), male, older, rural, and had no college degree. But that doesn't explain why they voted for Trump. There were four types of Trump voters; each having different expectations.
Thursday, December 8, 2016(2 comments)
Donald Trump, Cult Leader
Donald Trump's unexpected presidential win is best understood as a pseudo-religious event. Trump voters saw November 8th as their last chance to "save" America. Out of desperation they joined the cult of Trump.
Thursday, December 1, 2016
When historians work out the details of Donald Trump's 2016 presidential victory, the most important date will be August 19th when Paul Manafort resigned as Trump campaign director. While Kellyanne Conway and Steve Bannon replaced Manafort, the real change happened behind the scene when reclusive billionaire Robert Mercer and his daughter, Rebekah Mercer, took control of the Trump campaign.
Friday, November 25, 2016
Building the Trump Resistance
With the election of Donald Trump, the US has lurched towards political and social turmoil, an era where democracy is under attack. Progressives have a moral obligation to resist autocracy and injustice. Here are eight steps for building an effective resistance to Trump.
Monday, November 21, 2016(2 comments)
Was Hillary Cheated?
At this writing, Hillary Clinton has won the 2016 presidential popular vote by 1.7 million votes (1.3 percent). Unfortunately, she lost the electoral college (232 to 290) because Donald Trump carried the 13 swing states by an aggregate 850,000 votes (1.9 percent). Many Democrats think Hillary was cheated; they believe there were nefarious political tricks that cost her the election. There's not a clear-cut case.
Thursday, November 17, 2016(2 comments)
Trump's First Mistake
Given his electoral-college victory, Donald Trump has amassed short-term political capital. Early indications are that he will fritter it away.
Monday, November 14, 2016(3 comments)
Why Hillary Lost
It's essential that progressives learn from Hillary Clinton's devastating defeat. There are two competing theories about happened: Hillary's campaign blew it or she was cheated.
Thursday, November 10, 2016
Republicans have created a monster and on November 8th he was unleashed on the entire nation. What are progressives going to do about this?
Monday, October 24, 2016(1 comments)
Why Trump Lost the Debates
The 2016 election has been defined by Hillary Clinton's performance in the three presidential debates. Snap polls indicated she defeated Donald Trump in each encounter. And since the first debate, Clinton's lead over Trump has expanded both in terms of estimates of the popular vote and share of the electoral college. Clinton's decisive victory was due to her talent and preparation. Trump lost because of obvious defects.
Thursday, October 20, 2016
Debate 3: Smackdown at the HRC Corral
The third presidential debate had the elements of a classic Hollywood western. A robber-baron, Donald Trump, tries to takeover the town; the inhabitants turn, incongruously, to the local "schoolmarm", Hillary Clinton. They meet in an epic "battle" and the good woman forces the bad guy into mistake after mistake. At the end, Hillary walked into the audience, smiling, while Trump remained on stage, petrified.
Monday, October 17, 2016(1 comments)
The Election's Tipping Point
Months from now, as we look back at the 2016 presidential election, we'll argue about several possible tipping points that moved voters towards Hillary Clinton. Was it when she survived FBI Director Comey's speech about her emails? Was it when she decisively defeated Donald Trump in the first presidential debate? Was it one of Trump's tweet-storm fugues? It was Michelle Obama's speech on October 13th.
Thursday, October 13, 2016(1 comments)
Trump's October Surprise
Many observers believe that between now and election day there will be dueling political revelations: details of Donald Trump's behavior with women -- Trump has the profile of a sexual predator -- and emails from Podesta and other Clinton campaign insiders. Nonetheless, the ultimate "October Surprise" is likely to be the details of Trump's relationship with Russia.
Monday, October 10, 2016
The 2nd Debate: Hillary Stares Down a Bully
It was the presidential debate I expected but hoped wouldn't happen. In the October 9th St. Louis debate, Donald Trump was vicious. He threw the proverbial kitchen sink at Hillary Clinton, hurling insult after insult, lie after lie. But Clinton held her ground, managed to look and act presidential, and emerged victorious.
What Happened to Hillary's Lead?
After the Democratic convention, many Democrats breathed a sigh of relief because it appeared that Hillary Clinton had an "insurmountable" 8-point lead over Donald Trump. Two months later, that lead is almost gone and Dems are worried. What happened?
Friday, September 9, 2016(2 comments)
As the 2016 presidential election enters its final phase, Hillary Clinton has a slight lead over Donald Trump. While it's still possible for Trump to win, this is unlikely to happen because of four traps he has set for himself.
Friday, September 2, 2016(9 comments)
False Equivalence: Trump=Clinton, Godzilla=Bambi
One of the strangest aspects of the 2016 presidential campaign has been the mainstream media's decision to spend equal time criticizing Trump and Clinton. This has created a false equivalence. Imagine a political contest between Godzilla (Trump) and Bambi (Clinton). Because of the equal time rule, the nightly news would report, "Godzilla destroys Los Angeles," and then, "Bambi ravishes garden."
Friday, August 26, 2016(2 comments)
Trump's Heart of Darkness
On August 17th, Donald Trump once again shook up his campaign. While there were early indications that Trump would "soften" his image, these were refuted by the August 19th release of his first general election campaign ad, "Two Americas: Immigration." This TV ad stems from the same darkness that fueled Trump's acceptance speech: bigotry and hate.
Thursday, August 18, 2016(2 comments)
Top 10 Trump Predictions
As Donald Trump stumbles towards the November 8th election, it's clear that each week will bring a new Trump screwup. Here are my top ten predictions.
Friday, August 12, 2016(2 comments)
Trump's Missing Money
If you're watching the Olympic games, you may have noticed "Hillary for President" ads. She's bought $13.6 million worth, while Donald Trump has bought none. In fact, since garnering the Republican nomination, he's spent $0 on TV. Nonetheless, the Trump campaign spent $63m in July. What happened to it?
Friday, August 5, 2016(1 comments)
Who Are Trump Voters?
The latest Huffington Post Poll of Polls shows Hillary Clinton leading Donald Trump 47.1 percent to 39.7 percent. Many political observers feel that Trump's voter "ceiling" is 40 percent of the electorate. Who are these voters?
Friday, July 29, 2016(1 comments)
5 Takeaways from the Democratic Convention
The 2016 Democratic convention concluded with Hillary Clinton's paean to American exceptionalism. She contrasted "morning in America" with Donald Trump's "the barbarians are at the gates." In addition to the stark contrast in the vision of the two candidates, we learned five things at the conventions.
Monday, July 25, 2016
5 Lessons from the Republican Convention
The 2016 Republican convention concluded with Donald Trump's 75-minute rant that only he could protect America from the barbarians at the gates. Other than further proof of Trump's demagoguery, we learned five things at the convention.
Friday, July 22, 2016(1 comments)
Meet Donald Trump
If you just beamed onto planet earth, you probably were shocked to learn that New Yorker Donald Trump, a celebrity entrepreneur, is the Republican presidential nominee. Here's what you need to know about him.
Friday, July 15, 2016(12 comments)
Hillary Can Win Big
Hillary Clinton staggered out of the worst week of her 2016 presidential campaign with a 3 percent lead over Donald Trump. Nonetheless, it's likely she will move forward to a resounding victory in November. Here's what Hillary needs to do.
After securing the Republican presidential nomination, Donald Trump promised a "tell all" speech about Hillary Clinton. On June 22nd he delivered a slanderous collage of all the Clinton lies and innuendos the rightwing has circulated over the last 24 years. Those of us who believe Clinton would be a better president should be forewarned: there's more venom coming from Trump. Here's how to defend Hillary.
Wednesday, June 22, 2016
How Donald Lost His Mojo
When political historians look back on the 2016 presidential contest, they'll likely consider May 4th to the present as the decisive period. On May 4th, Donald Trump won the Indiana Republican primary; his last competitor, Ted Cruz, dropped out; and the press labeled Trump the presumptive GOP candidate. A week later, Trump got a polls "bump" and was effectively tied with Hillary Clinton. Then Donald lost his mojo.
Thursday, June 16, 2016(1 comments)
5 Suggestions for HIllary
Five months before the 2016 presidential election, Hillary Clinton has secured the Democratic nomination. Despite many tactical advantages, Clinton is in a tight race with Donald Trump. Here are five suggestions about what Hillary can do to smooth her path to the presidency.
Friday, June 3, 2016(2 comments)
The Hillary Problem
On the cusp of securing the Democratic presidential nomination, Hillary Clinton has a problem: a lot of Democrats are unhappy with her campaign.
Wednesday, May 25, 2016
The Birth of the Stupid Party
Republicans are handing their presidential nomination to a know-nothing billionaire bully, Donald Trump -- the worst nominee in modern times. How did Republicans get to be so stupid?
Wednesday, May 18, 2016
Trump's Top Ten Tax Tricks
Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has refused to release his tax returns, saying "It's none of your business" and "there's nothing to learn." Of course, there is something to learn from the recent tax returns of a supposed billionaire who seeks to gain the trust of American voters. If we had access to Trump's returns we'd learn Donald's top ten tax tricks.
Thursday, May 12, 2016(1 comments)
Welcome to Trump World: Immigration
Donald Trump's signature issue is immigration. When asked by the New York Times what he would accomplish during his first 100 days as President, Trump responded: "rescind Obama's executive orders on immigration," design the wall with Mexico, and ensure "the immigration ban on Muslims would be in place." Trump's immigration policy has five pillars.
Thursday, May 5, 2016(2 comments)
Welcome to Trump World: Foreign Policy
One of the complaints about Donald Trump's presidential candidacy is that he doesn't present detailed plans. On April 27th, he presented his foreign policy "plan" at Washington DC's "Center for the National Interest." It was standard conservative rhetoric. Fleshed out with "Trumpisms." And lies.