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Our Idiot King Part IV

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camachoHuh?


I’m generally happy to mock anyone who says “I couldn’t imagine that it would get this bad!” but hey. As far as I can tell, the President of the United States is publicly threatening the former Director of the FBI against testifying about their conversations, on the logic that the former may have secretly taped the latter.

Please no more Idiocracy comparisons; I would gladly trade Trump for President Dwayne Elizondo Mountain Dew Herbert Camacho.

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  • EthanS

    Drum reports this morning that Cheeto Benito confuses health insurance for life insurance. I suppose that makes sense for somebody who watches too much cable news.

    “My friends Lee Iacocca, Ed McMahon, and Sam Waterston assure me that Colonial Penn Health Insurance is the finest health insurance you can buy. There’s no medical exam, and your premiums will never go up. That sounds like the kind of health insurance at all Americans need. Because when the metal ones come for you…”

    • sigaba

      …and they will.

    • JKTH

      Another amusing(?) thing about that quote is that it implies that Trump thinks people should pay the same premium for health insurance at any age…while the AHCA goes in the complete opposite direction on that.

    • Off topic, but Trump’s election and inauguration seem to have lit a fire under Drum. I haven’t seen him this consistently engaged since Bush was president – but then, that applies to a lot of us.

    • BiloSagdiyev

      The metal ones

  • catbirdman

    Looking forward to the Nixon Library’s “fun fact” to accompany this development.

    • randy khan

      Indeed.

    • David Hunt

      “Nixon never threatened to release recorded conversations between himself and others.”

      • Thom

        True!

  • John F

    I would assume that Trump has more to fear than Comey does if their conversations were indeed taped.

    One thing that surprises me about the Trump admin, is that for an accomplished grifter he sure does seems to have no clue how what he says will be perceived by listeners.

    I think the trouble is that before now he only really “communicated” to two types of people: 1. Employees who had to smile and nod at EVERYTHING, and 2. Marks- and his marks tended to be greedy and credulous

    Anyone else he’d simply bluster and threaten them when they’d dispute what he said- the vast majority would then walk away because it simply was not gonna be worth dealing with an irrational rich man.

    Trouble is, he’s POTUS now, no one can simply walk away from him anymore.

    The stuff that’s gonna come out when GOP functionaries decide it’s politically safe to cross him is gonna be fascinating.

    • NewishLawyer

      I din’t think grifters really care about how non-marks interpret their words. They just want enough marks.

      • sigaba

        The patter is designed to actively repel skeptics and keep them out of the conversation.

        • Manny Kant

          I think viewing Trump’s behavior as “designed” to do anything is probably the wrong frame.

          Trump was an adequate con-man (if he was, which is unclear – he’s lost money compared to if he’d just invested dad’s money in an index fund) entirely fortuitously – the particular form his narcissism takes is one that a certain kind of mark responds to. He’s not doing any of this out of cunning, it’s just who he is.

          • Dennis Orphen

            You can’t pay yourself a huge salary and deduct the expenses of a jet set lifestyle with a portion of the earnings from an index fund. (Off topic: The managers of that fund can. You down with OPM? Yes, I am!)

    • sigaba

      Recall the previous incident, where Omarosa surreptitiously taped a conversation with a journalist where she threatener her, and then released an edited version.

      It doesn’t have to convince anybody, just has to squirt squid ink. I imagine all those hardscrabbles are just telling themselves “Washington is a rough place, my man Trump is just protecting himself.”

      • science_goy

        Even if the recording was unredacted and looked really bad for Trump, none of his supporters would actually listen to it. They’d just see the Fox “News” analysis about how everything on the tape actually suggests grave criminal misdeeds on Obama and Hillary’s part.

    • ochospantalones

      I would assume that Trump has more to fear than Comey does if their conversations were indeed taped.

      Whatever else can be said about James Comey, he’s a highly intelligent guy. And he has a long history of knowing when and how to cover his own ass. Trump on the other hand can’t remember what he said 30 seconds ago, and is in many cases genuinely delusional. I wonder if even inside the White House there is anyone (other than Trump) who believes a recording is likely to vindicate Trump’s purported recollection of events from January over Comey’s.

    • jmauro

      One thing that surprises me about the Trump admin, is that for an accomplished grifter he sure does seems to have no clue how what he says will be perceived by listeners.

      I think he’s used to a stage where the next shiny object will distract the press enough to move on and not really dig into the situation anymore than getting a quote eon the topic. At the NY Developer level, Reality TV star level and even the Presidential Candidate level this worked pretty well. At those levels you can pretty much lie your way out of anything bad and everyone will think it’s cute a move on to the next topic. There was always someone to play off and put the attention towards that isn’t you.

      It starts breaking down at the Presidential level though because there are entire teams dedicated to running everything to ground, not letting go, and trying to be the next Woodward or Bernstein. His skill set doesn’t quite match the media environment that’s he’s now in and as such instead of helping his case he’s hurting it.

      More or less the Peter Principle of media relations.

  • NonyNony

    I’m trying to parse this because I really don’t understand anything about Donald Trump.

    This Tweet could mean that he’s been secretly taping conversations with people to use as blackmail fodder. No normal thug would think to threaten someone with blackmail ON THE GODDAMN TWITTER WHERE EVERYONE CAN SEE THE THREAT. But then Trump is no normal thug.

    On the other hand, this Tweet could mean that Trump is angry that Comey might have been the one secretly taping conversations, and Trump is threatening Comey to keep him from revealing tapes.

    Regardless, W The everloving F.

    • malraux

      Which of the two of them would you expect to be dumb enough to be secretly recording the conversation? Maybe trump thought that getting people on tape saying “i swear loyalty to you, mr president.” would work like a legal contract.

      • NonyNony

        Which of the two of them would you expect to be dumb enough to be secretly recording the conversation?

        I mean, that’s pretty obvious.

        But since he’s dumb enough to do it, and he’s a master of projection, he could also just be projecting what he should have done onto Comey. And so I’m right back where I started.

      • rea

        “i swear loyalty to you, mr president.”

        You know who else wanted a personal loyalty oath from governmental officials?

        • Hogan

          William the Conqueror?

      • He has the certified letter signed by the the President of the United States! what more does he need.

    • EthanS

      Well you know there’s always these tapes out there. People always have these tapes that come out of nowhere about these kinds of meetings, I don’t know but the media’s able to get a hold of them and the fake news would just love to run with it but maybe somebody in the Real Media could actually share what was really going on here. Maybe there’s a tape somewhere. We should look into that. We’re definitely gonna look into that

      • dogboy

        I’m voting Putin’s got the audio. He just sent a RT crew to the White House to check on his investment, someone should ask him.

    • SatanicPanic

      He’s full of shit. He has no tapes, no knowledge of any tapes, but he think there are some out there because that’s how the government works. This statement from him is no different than if you or I had said something like “man Trump must be hoping there are no tapes of their conversations around.” If there are tapes, they almost certainly contradict whatever he remembers them saying. The man is just that dumb.

      • Bill Murray

        Trump thinks Obama has the tapes

        • Domino

          Read all the pamphlets and watch the tapes /

          I get all confused when you mix up the dates /

          Whoa!

          • DaftPunk

            I see what you did there.

      • royko

        To be fair, at this point, we can’t rule out that there’s not an investigation of Trump that includes legal surveillance that could have picked up the conversation.

        • SatanicPanic

          It’s possible. It’s even possible that there are tapes. But I highly doubt Trump has heard them, and if he has, he’s definitely lying about their contents.

      • The NSA has audio tapes of Russian spies and mobsters and anyone they may have spoken to

    • efgoldman

      No normal thug would think to threaten someone with blackmail ON THE GODDAMN TWITTER

      Both Occam’s and Trump’s razors say he’s threatening for the sake of making himself feel good and powerful.
      See also: “Lock her up!”

  • malraux

    That record scratching sound you just heard was every journalist, unsure republican, and every single democratic politician saying “He wouldn’t be stupid enough to be secretly recording his conversations would he?” and then rushing off because of course he would be.

    • NonyNony

      I think my first reaction was “hasn’t he ever heard of Richard Nixon?”

      I mean, the man is only 70 years old. It’s not like he lived through the Watergate scandal when he was in his 20s or anything like that. So you can’t expect him to understand the connection between taping conversations and the kind of trouble that could lead to…

      • If he’s recording them on that insecure phone of his, every intelligence service in the world already has copies of the recordings… Although “tapes” implies that he may have no idea that his phone can do voice recordings.

        • Dennis Orphen

          Everyone’s phone can record anything within micshot and send it ‘home’ so to speak, and the isn’t the only agency that has, or is working on this capability, governmental or private, foreign and domestic. If I really cared about my security (I don’t) I wouldn’t even trust powering it down. I would keep it in one of those lead bags photographers used to use to carry film through airport x-ray machines, or some kind of small form-factor Faraday cage, unless I was actually using it.

          • Tristan

            They make Faraday bags. Cops use them when they confiscate cellphones to prevent remote deletion.

            • They make Faraday bags. Cops use them when they confiscate cellphones to prevent remote deletion.

              I suppose the aluminium foil cabal has kept this technology out of the hands of the hatters.

      • BiloSagdiyev

        Sure, he was around, and we know what his priorities were (money, ladies, fame, money, ladies, money)…

        But he’s a Wallacite, a Trumpite (the Trumpiest of Trumpites), a Nixonian resenter. The lesson these people learned from Watergate was?

        (wait for it)

        “Liberal medjia took him down for no reason at all!” (shake fist)

        • Dennis Orphen

          They also learned that foolish liberals (not real leftist) would say ‘It’s the cover-up, not the crime’, effectively green-lighting future crimes, much to our democracy’s harm.

          • If it’s the cover-up, not the crime,
            why not just not cover up your crimes?

            Genius.

      • Dennis Orphen

        There ought to be a grove of trees on the grounds of the Nixon Presidential Library called the Rose Mary Woods.

      • Manny Kant

        Why would he remember anything about Watergate? None of it had anything to do with him, personally.

  • Jake the antisoshul soshulist

    I think most of us would trade President Trump for President Camacho in a heartbeat.

    • NonyNony

      Say what you will about President Camacho, but the man genuinely worried about the people he was elected to lead. He didn’t know how to do anything to help them, but he actually cared.

      • EthanS

        Camacho’s plan was “put the smart guy in charge”. That already makes him smarter than anybody in the GOP.

        • NonyNony

          +1000 electrolytes

          • BiloSagdiyev

            + a 20 pack of disposable clothes

        • cpinva

          “That already makes him smarter than anybody in the GOP.”

          except, for a bunch of really dumb people, they’re in charge of everything. could just be dumb luck, i suppose.

        • eh

          For tonight’s performance, “Not Sure” will be played by Jared Kushner.

      • N__B

        Also: great arms.

  • Take him seriously, not literally.

  • mnuba

    It is pretty funny that Trump somehow thinks Comey would be the one coming off worse in these tapes, though.

    • David Hunt

      Well, not before those tapes had been “corrected” by technical experts to make sure they reflected the “truth” of said conversation instead of the dirty lies that the unedited audio reflected.

      • so-in-so

        Except Drumpf might decide to entrust the corrections to his youngest, what with all his skill in the cyber, and the results be obviously doctored and amateurish. Maybe even someone else saying “now!” right before the over “taping” parts.

      • Colin Day

        Wait, Trump has technical experts?

        • Redwood Rhiadra

          He’s got Bannon, who co-founded Breitbart News. And pretty much all of Breitbart’s big stories (Shirley Sherrod, ACORN, etc.) were the result of them doctoring tapes, so they’ve definitely got the expertise.

  • Scotius

    Hey Senator McConnell and Congressman Ryan! I sure hope you haven’t been saying anything in Donald Trump’s presence that you wouldn’t to become public.

    • cpinva

      “Hey Senator McConnell and Congressman Ryan! I sure hope you haven’t been saying anything in Donald Trump’s presence that you wouldn’t to become public.”

      the real question here is, would you feel comfortable having your mother hear it? no, i don’t mean your wife “mother”, i mean your real, actual mother. that i even have to make that distinction makes me somewhat nauseous.

  • CS Clark

    I honestly don’t get what the quote marks around tapes are doing. Did he learn his lesson from the whole wiretapps thing, and knows that there aren’t really tapes, just the digital? Or is he saying that there aren’t actual recordings but he will claim that Comey said something and that he has proof which he will share as soon as the audit is done.

    • randy khan

      He doesn’t know what they mean, either, but he thought they’d look good.

    • Rob in CT

      Possibly, but…

      My mother is about Trump’s age (also, a non-college grad and a batshit anti-tax Republican).

      She bolds, underlines, or puts quotes around all sorts of stuff that makes no sense to me. And she was an administrative assistant (boggle). I really don’t get it, but it may be generational.

      • so-in-so

        This is where “Trump’s razor” comes in handy, go with the dumbest take. Also, he’s seen comparison with Nixon, and there were tapes involved in Nixon’s downfall, so he has tapes on his mind.

        I think people just fall back on quotes, underlines and bold text as means of random emphasis; like at this second I think THIS word is important, so I’m doing something to show that “fact”.

        • science_goy

          This, definitely. Just a hallmark of someone who never quite understood grammar.

          People have been incorrectly using quotes as emphasis for as long as I can remember, particularly in homemade PR-type situations. ‘The “Best” Burgers In Town’ and so on.

      • Hob

        I was once an administrative assistant for a corporate vice president who did the same thing. Fortunately most of this person’s communications with the world went through me so I could copyedit a little, but then the company decided all the executives should send lots of handwritten thank-you cards to all of their staff all the time so that everyone would feel appreciated. So of course lots of those ended up with sarcastic-looking statements like: “Thank you” for everything you “do” to “improve” things!

        • Rob in CT

          LOL, right!

          I have a memory of my mother putting someone’s name in quotes!

          It’s like… what?

          Forget it, she’s rolling.

        • Dennis Orphen

          What a New Yorker cartoon screaming for the standard default caption.

    • dogboy

      My guess is that Trump thinks“tapes” is supposed to function along the lines of Why don’t you pass the time by playing a little solitaire?

    • rea

      Did he learn his lesson from the whole wiretaps thing, and knows that there aren’t really tapes, just the digital?

      He insisted on use of a steam-powered recorder.

    • cpinva

      “Or is he saying that there aren’t actual recordings but he will claim that Comey said something and that he has proof which he will share as soon as the audit is done.”

      dude, the “audit” will never be done.

  • Rob in CT

    Please no more Idiocracy comparisons

    I decline to acquiesce to your proposal.

    ;)

  • Joe_JP

    Well, tapes helped Nixon, right?

    • tsam

      Oh look a fork! OW MY EYE!

      • Rob in CT

        This is why Ruprect had a cork on his fork…

        • Joe_JP

          Dirty Rotten Scoundrels for the win.

          • so-in-so

            Now I’m waiting for the video of Drumpf asking to be excused during an interview…

            Hilarity, or horror, ensues.

        • Dennis Orphen

          Not Ray Ruprecht I hope?

    • bizarroMike

      You’re [expletive deleted] right they did!

  • janitor_of_lunacy

    It would be pretty funny if Comey had actually been wearing a wire for that meeting as part of the ongoing investigation …

    • rea

      Surely no one can sneak a recorder into a meeting with the president at the White House?

      • Just_Dropping_By

        If there’s someone who could do it, I would think the FBI director would be very high on the list — access to cutting edge surveillance gear plus he would presumably get a very light search by the Secret Service unless they were specifically watching for something.

      • weirdnoise

        I think the Russian state media just did…

        • NonyNony

          Does it count as sneaking if you’re openly carrying it in and making obvious use of it?

          • Dennis Orphen

            With the reluctant and blackmailed consent of the recorded?

  • cpinva

    “Surely no one can sneak a recorder into a meeting with the president at the White House?”

    yes they can, and stop calling me surely!

    i’ll just let myself out now.

  • JonH

    Trump really is an imbecile if he doesn’t realize that “tapes” is the magic word to give every reporter a massive Watergate boner.

    • BiloSagdiyev

      Since the GOP never lets go of past slights, insults, or defeats, I’m sure they’d relish a chance to fight a Watergate and win. In fact, I’m so paranoid about their self-pity mixed with selfish amorality and belligerence that I always wonder if they’re going to try to invade Vietnam just to prove we could win it if only we were more bloodthirsty.

  • bs

    I wonder if Terry Crews (the actor who portrayed President Camacho) would be willing to do a several year performance art piece and run for Prez in 2020…and ask trump to be his VP. Trump’s too dumb to get the Idiocracy reference, and being asked to play second fiddle would make him go ballistic (or cruise….maybe not such a good idea).

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