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Thursday, February 25, 2016

Can't be bought

One aspect of Donald Trump's candidacy that the Conservative Commentariat ignores is that he cannot be bought. He is a billionaire.

Now I realize that everyone in Washington just "knows" that all businessmen are crooks, but they are wrong. Most businessmen are honest, hard-working and law-abiding. But when pundits hang out with moocher consultants and spin artists, they begin to think the whole world is a paper moon, just like Washington.

Donald Trump on the F-35:
I do hear that it’s not very good. I’m hearing that our existing planes are better. And one of the pilots came out of the plane, one of the test pilots, and said this isn’t as good as what we already have. And to spend billions and billions of dollars on something that maybe isn’t as good …
They’re saying it doesn’t perform as well as our existing equipment, which is much less expensive. So when I hear that, immediately I say we have to do something, because you know, they’re spending billions. This is a plane, there’s never been anything like it in terms of cost. And how about, you know, we’re retooling with planes that aren’t as good as the ones we have, and the test pilots are amazing people. They know better than anybody, okay, and I think you would accept that.
And yet Congress is caving in to the defense contractors to build more of these birds.

From David Archibald:
Defense lobbyists in Washington as a whole have been spending about $130 million per annum. Contributions from the defense lobby to members of Congress total another $28 million, rising from an average of $10,000 per annum in 1990 to over $40,000 per annum now, at least to the Republican ones. There are much higher individual totals. Congressman Mac Thornberry (Republican – Texas) got $256,050 in the 2015 year. Senator John McCain (Republican – Arizona) received $186,250. McCain talks the talk on defense reform but does nothing. Congress has been bought and the investment is paying off handsomely.
If the Republican establishment has prostituted itself for 30 pieces of silver, perhaps there’s hope amongst the Democrats. Nope – even as the hairshirt-wearing Bernie Sanders rails against the evils of capitalism and Wall Street, he is an F-35 supporter because of jobs in Vermont. It almost goes without saying that Mrs Clinton’s ties to Lockheed Martin are strong and deep. The Clinton Foundation has taken millions from Lockheed Martin, which has paid her husband $200,000 in speaking fees. Her campaign chairman owns the firm that lobbied for the F-35’s approval. The list goes on. 
Yes, I get that The Donald's supporters are all a bunch of dumb, mouth-breathing shills, but at least they are not backing a crook.


  1. I have some misgivings about Trump but all in all if he really wants this gig, I think he is definitely worth the gamble. Of course if he is going to try to knock the blood pudding out of the mouths of the defense contractors, he better wear two bullet proof vests.

  2. There's a reason so many people in Washington (and Hollywood) think that all businessmen are crooks: a crook thinks that everyone is a crook; a dishonest person thinks that everyone is dishonest; a liar thinks that everyone is a liar.

  3. Personally, I think Trump can be bought, you just have to add a couple extra zeros to the check!

  4. I'm all for a robust defense industry and increasing the defense budget, but we need to make sure we are getting our money's worth. On this point The Donald is right. If the F-35 is a dud, s**tcan it. - Elric

  5. I heard a comment that Trump, as a businessman, didn't have experience getting things done in government where you can't just order someone, you have to negotiate, etc.

    But then I realized that Trump has a long history of getting very big things done in the domain of some of the most corrupt and venal politicians and bureaucrats around, the city governments of NYC and Atlantic City as well as the state governments of NY and NJ.

    Tell me he doesn't know how to get things done in government....

  6. At this point in time the F-35 is outdated before it fully arrives. They should shelve it and skip ahead to the pilot-less fighter that is obviously coming. Some of the funds should be redirected to refurbishing, upgrading and perhaps expanding the fleet of A-10s for close air support it is most beloved by the boots on the ground

  7. I'm no expert on fighter planes, but I'm pretty sure I know more about them than the Great Bloviator.

    You keep saying Trump is not a crook, Don. How many people in the casino business are not crooks, and how do you KNOW he is not a crook? He has admitted he bribes politicians. Isn't the briber just as guilty as the bribee?

    1. A man's gotta do what a man's gotta do, when he's being held up for money.