1. Gallup approval rates were still 80% for Republicans and 84% for Conservative Republicans (day 275 of term, polled Oct 17-22). Now 79% and 82% (day 282, Oct 23-29). Still slight decline but no risk to sweeping GOP primaries.
2. Still trying to dump links. First on indictments filed subsequent to above polls, which may affect later polls. (Summary – not likely to change my expectation of GOP dominated by Trumpists after mid-terms, House dominated by Democrats likely to impeach Trump, no chance of Senate removing from office. Scene still set for a second term as still no sign of any coherent opposition). Real impact of isolationist policies more likely in second term as Democrats also shift that way.)
3. Vanity Fair fantasizing on White House freak outs over indictments (which have been known for months). As far as I can make out there is not even a pretence at reporting from any sort of source or even at analysing anything, just pure fantasy.
4. CNN has actually noticed that Republicans “speaking out” against Trump are not planning to run for office again, confirming that GOP is becoming Trump’s party:
(I won’t bother with the far more numerous reports celebrating these attacks as though they were inflicting actual damage rather than admitting defeat).
5. Guide to code words used in media articles to describe anonymous sources.
Some are claimed to imply a credible source. Most articles I read use one of these:
“People familiar with the investigation,” “U.S. officials briefed on intelligence reports,” “current and former officials familiar with the investigations,” “one current and one former American official with knowledge of the continuing congressional and F.B.I. investigations,” “Republican strategist,” “Democratic strategist,” “senior Republicans
Article suggests even such nonsensical “sources” should be considered:
So our advice is: Read all of these vaguely sourced stories with skepticism. But if you really want to keep up with Trump’s Washington, you probably don’t have a choice but to read some stories with unnamed sources.
I can confirm that is what I am having to do. But it is to keep up with the collapse of mainstream politics, not to actually get a grip on what else is going on apart from that collapse. (eg very hard to figure out foreign policy, trade policy etc – only easy to understand the media and Democrat baiting).
6. Media wonks discussing media’s coverage of Trump:
The media has lots of problems in how it covers Trump. We’ve just scratched the surface here. But these problems are also hard to solve and figuring them out in real time is tough.
In other words they cannot help themselves and are just going to keep doing it…
7. Kim Jong-Il figures out how to get a straight report of what he actually said into the US media in full:
“Donald Trump is a rogue and a dotard (at length)”.
Will Putin catch on?
8. Dems moving towards Medicare for all:
VOX notices that Trump pushing them that way.
9. NY mag actually noticed that Trump has every incentive to push tax breaks for middle not top.
GOP incumbents who treat that as a betryal of GOP priorities won’t be back after midterms.
10. Dem ex President carter has noticed that Trump is preparing way for bipartisan immigration reform and medicare for all.
11. Dem economist hints Trump could meet his 3% growth target. Lamely suggests that will please just stock market rather than voters. Still actually noticing the danger even if unable to say it explicitly suggests some residual capacity for analysis.
12. CNN describes GOP incumbents worried that Democrats on track for House majority as “Trump allies” who are worried that Trump doesn’t understand he would then be bogged down in inquiries and impeachment. No attempt at explaining why that wouldn’t be a good outcome for winning a second term.
13. The Economist explains how the indictments could be used to pressure witnesses to expose Trump collusion with Russia. Assumes there was some despite a year of no evidence.
14. Paul Walden at the week says Trump more worried that Mueller might expose his shady financial dealings than about Russia. Sounds plausible to me. But no sign of it happening.
15. Just a reminder that Bernie Sanders opposing immigration won’t be an opportunist switch like others – that’s always been his position:
Many more to dump…