Rosenthal Not Optimistic About Trump, Finds Clinton Similarly Unacceptable

Joel Rosenthal
Joel Rosenthal

Pat Powers thinks his beer is more interesting than Donald Trump’s “boring” hostile takeover of his party. Yet the Trumpist triumph is so clearly a watershed moment that even South Dakota Republican oracle Joel Rosenthal, who has averaged barely five blog posts a year over the last four years, pokes his head out of his shell to pronounce on the Donald and the fate of his party.

Rosenthal refrains from calling his fellow Republicans to action for or against Trump. He clearly doesn’t like Trump, calling him a “bully” who uses tactics “not heretofore… acceptable” for qualified Presidential aspirants. Rosenthal finds Trump’s policy statements either unreliable or destructive but unlikely to be good for the GOP:

Keep in perspective Trump has attacked both Women and Hispanics both voting groups that many believe Republicans need to get votes from. Trump though has tapped a new American electorate with a nationalistic theme wanting to put America First again and wanting to bring jobs back to America. This sounds a lot like Isolationism and Protectionism, both views that have hurt our nation in the past and are not right for out country now.  Trump talks of changes in the role of our foreign, military, and trade policies. These changes will remake the Republican Party. I’ll leave the discussion of social policy to others as the presumptive GOP nominee changes his positions depending on to whom he is talking, where he is talking and when he is talking [Joel Rosenthal, “Trumped,” South Dakota Straight Talk, 2016.05.08].

Rosenthal salves his traumatized Republicans by false equating Trump’s unaccetability with Hillary Clinton’s:

Just so my GOP critics don’t think I’ve gone totally soft on the presumptive Democrat nominee, her character is also unacceptable. I won’t go into her positions (at least, unlike Mr. Trump she had taken a few and made some effort to detail them). Though to date she has never been convicted of anything she is scandal prone. Her misjudgment of her use of private servers is the latest example. Her dual explanations of what happened at the Benghazi attack alone makes her ineligible to me to serve as President. She told the American people and the families of the deceased, the attack in Benghazi was the result of a video while during the same time period emailing Egyptian officials saying it was a terrorist attack [Rosenthal, 2016.05.08].

Like every other Republican I hear teeing up excusifications for Trumpism, Rosenthal falls short in his Clinton/Trump equation. The ills he ascribes to Clinton hinge on debatable partisan interpretations of murky evidence. Joel and I can find broad consensus, based on Donald Trump’s own incontrovertible statements, that Donald Trump is a loudmouthed jerk who shouldn’t be allowed anywhere near the nuclear button. The sooner Republicans get past their excusifications (and worse, blind submission) and acknowledge that Donald Trump should not be President, the sooner the Republican Party can put the White House out of their thoughts for the next four years and focus on winning the races left to them in Congress and the state legislatures.

43 Responses to Rosenthal Not Optimistic About Trump, Finds Clinton Similarly Unacceptable

  1. Robin Friday

    1. She’s only “scandal prone” because her opponents insist on putting her in the middle of fake scandals where there are none. Ken Starr was investigating Whitewater when he found Monica Lewinsky and gave up entirely on Whitewater. No other “scandal” has been found to be legitimate as claimed by the opposition.

    2. Likewise, there was and remains no “scandal” associated with Benghazi, only what was manufactured by the Far Right. There were no “dual explanation” for Benghazi, tragedy for sure, but not scandal. The truth is that in the very early hours after the mission attack, all indications were that it was related to the video, as in Cairo. And of course it is no lie to write to someone else that it was terrorist-related, as we know it was.

    3. The e-mail thing is simply a continuation of Benghazi, as Lewinsky was simply a workable distraction from the nothingness of Whitewater. A “misjudgment”? Indeed, in hindsight, as she has affirmed. A “scandal”? No, unless Powell and Condi Rice are also guilty, as they have affirmed. A “lie”? Prove it. We’re waiting.

  2. bearcreekbat

    I have to laugh when I hear that people are worried about Hillary’s “character.” I am trying to figure out exactly what she has done that suggests her “character” would lead to any particular objectionable public policy positions.

    So she earned a lot of money giving speeches. I doubt that any one of us, Republican or Democrat, would have rejected earning the same amounts of money if we were asked to give speeches. Not Cory, not Jerry, not mfi, not bcb, and certainly not a single Republican in South Dakota. Why should she be held to a different standard? Where is any evidence that she proposed or supported a policy that hurts poor and middle class families as a result of being paid to give speeches.

    And if any of us decided to form a non-profit foundation to help people around the world in need, who among us would reject donations to that foundation from people we disliked or disagreed with? I can’t imagine a normal human being so sanctimonious that she would reject resources that could be used to alleviate poverty and pain among the less fortunate people of our world.

    Oh, what about those incorrect memories about tarmac gunfire or allegedly inconsistent explanations for the Bengazi attack. Even assuming the worst motivations for making the statements only suggests that Hillary is so concerned about being able to have a voice for the poor and middle class, and defending Obama’s voice for the poor and the middle class, that she might exaggerate to improve her electability and protect Obama’s continued efforts to help the poor and middle class. On the other hand, who among us, including politicians in both parties, has never exaggerated or made conflicting statement?

    I could go on, but you get the point. Republicans have spent decades trying to marginalize and destroy both Bill and Hillary, with no substantive success. Bernie and Hillary each have some wonderful policy ideas aimed at helping the weakest folks along with the middle class. They are both positive candidates and the pejorative labels continually tossed out there primarily by those who don’t give a hoot about either the poor or middle class ought to be ignored.

  3. Mr. H, I realize you are a bit of a tea totaller but I can assure you that Mr. PP’s beer choices are not interesting beers.

  4. mike from iowa

    From Shannyn Moore @
    A booth at a Trump rally was selling buttons that say, “Life’s a Bitch! Don’t Vote for One!” and “KFC Hillary Special: 2 Fat Thighs, 2 Small Breasts, Left Wing.” Really? Left Wing? Not hardly. I don’t like Hillary Clinton’s politics, but this kind of sexist attack hurts all women — and men who actually like women.

    Imagine how Donnie Drumpf would talk to M Thatcher or Angela Merkel?

  5. Robin Friday

    GWB’s speaking fees are much higher. Her speaking fees are not out of line for who she is. What makes GWB worth twice as much?

  6. Hillary, Bernie and Trump are the only three candidates in the run now for the White House. So when will she show us the contents of her paid speeches that Wall Street paid for? Do you think that Trump will have any paid speeches that Wall Street paid for? You know Bernie does not, so then, keep your promise Secretary Clinton

  7. “I suppose I’ve been Trumped because he does keep telling us not to worry, he will Make America Great Again.” Rosenthal

    Exxon, reassuring Americans that global warming is nothing to worry about in a TV commercial extolling the virtues of carbon dioxide.

    The spot’s unforgettable tag line:

    “They call it pollution. We call it life.”

    Democratic AGs, not the infamous RAGA jackley and daugaard love to spend our money on trying to protect republican talking points.

  8. Robin helps make my point about the false equivalency. With Clinton, it’s not hard to come up with counterevidence and reasonably debate the scandals surrounding her and whether they are products of her own sins or of a rabid Republican attack machine. With Trump, everyone agrees he has said the things he has said. Even the excusifying Republicans acknowledge that Trump says vile things and that he needs to make amends and show some improvement to be President.

  9. Republicans in South Dakota would vote for a dog if it had a R in front of it.

  10. Benghazi is a fake scandal. Four Americans volunteered to serve in a dangerous country and danger found them. Certainly a tragedy. Not a scandal. More Americans died in a Platte house fire than died in Benghazi. More Americans are murdered in Chicago every week than died in Benghazi. More Americans died in SD in the past 2 months because they didn’t wear their seatbelts than died in Benghazi.

    Joel Rosenthal dost protest too much. He will vote for Trump. He will even join the line of GOPsters on their knees behind Trump to smooch Trump’s patootie if it looks like Trump even has an outside shot of winning. He’s always been and always will be a party hack.

  11. mike from iowa

    Wingnuts will go full bore after HRC because they are still steamed they didn’t get WJC impeached and removed from office. Imagine how much better the entire world could be if these jackasses paid half as much attention to the problems everyday American’s and others face. When it comes to hating Clintons-wingnuts have laser-like focus to the exclusion of all else. Vote every last one out of office!

  12. Benghazi is indeed a fake scandal that looks like, found a real one. Much like Whitewater found Monica, who by the way, saved Social Security. The real scandal that the FBI is involved in is the quid pro quo between Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State to bring funding into the Clinton Foundation.

    Benghazi has had two years of finding out that 4 guys got killed in a gun running mission in Libya. That will be all they find for their efforts there. In February, the FBI formally announced its investigation into the unsecured email server in the Clinton’s basement. No indictments have been issued, but the questions of Hillary’s staff continues with the former first lady subject to subpoena as well through approval by a judge.

  13. mike from iowa

    Let’s make this easy. Can anyone name one single crime HRC has been charged with and convicted of at least since the mid 80’s?

  14. Clinton is being investigated as my keystrokes hit this box, by the FBI. We can look at the EB-5 here and say that the FBI could not find itself with both hands, and this may be the case here. Who knows what they will find. When the investigators found the unsecured email server, they went to the FBI who started to investigate it and they then announced formally that the Secretary of State was under investigation. One thing is for sure, there are over 20 emails that are confirmed highly classified, she should have known better.

  15. mike from iowa

    Jerry-classified emails nitwithstanding,mist legal experts I have read-excluding Fake Noise pundips- say “intent” is the defining factor.
    I also remember recently a Potus,vice potus and his chief of staff outing a covert CIA agent and her family for political gain. The intent was clear-the punishment was well short of the crime and most of it was relieved by presidential fiat.

  16. There may well be more than one investigation by the FBI, the best thing for all is to have them completed soon so all can move on.

  17. mike from iowa

    If the FBI doesn’t hang HRC,wingnuts will accuse Obama of interfering with the investigation and then Gowdy and crew will schedule more hearings trying to derail President Clinton’s nomination. We have seen this playbook often from wingnuts. If at first you don’t succeed-keep sucking.

  18. Steve Sibson

    “Rosenthal falls short in his Clinton/Trump equation”

    That is true. For example Joel said, “Keep in perspective Trump has attacked both Women and Hispanics both voting groups that many believe Republicans need to get votes from.”

    That perspective is classic Cultural Neo-Marxism. This approach will put Hillary, a global capitalist, into the With House. And a global capitalist in the White House is exactly what Establishment Republicans want.

  19. bearcreekbat

    mfi makes a point confirmed by Jerry’s linked article:

    “If the FBI finds sufficient evidence to launch a criminal investigation into Hillary Clinton or one of her top aides for mishandling classified information, Lynch’s Justice Department will have to decide whether to press ahead.

    Even if no evidence of wrongdoing is found, Clinton’s many critics are unlikely to take the word of an appointee of President Obama’s and will doubt that justice has been served.”

    Note the phrase: “If the FBI finds sufficient evidence to launch a criminal investigation….” While the FBI is reviewing the email, this qualifier, if accurate, says no criminal investigation has been launched to date.

    Hillary states that in hindsight using the private email server like her two predecessors did was not the best judgment. Her decision to do so, however, doesn’t provide any evidence that she supports a single policy harming the poor and middle class. She remains a very positive candidate if we focus on the policies she supports going forward.

    For example Investopedia describes her economic policy positions in detail, noting early in its analysis:

    “Clinton’s economic policies target the middle class, promising to secure their economic futures and expand their opportunities through greater access to education and more evenly distributed economic growth.”

    Investopedia follows up with Hillary’s specific goals and identifies how she plans to accomplish these goals. Rational voters will ignore the non-policy scandal allegations, study these proposals, decide if they agree or disagree and vote accordingly.

  20. Bear,

    Two comments:

    1) HRC’s attempt at equivalence between her exclusive use of a private email server and email account vs. the incidental of her predecessors (not even dozens vs. thousands) is misleading.

    2) Everybody knows there is an investigation going on (at the FBI and State Department). They just are commenting as it standard operating procedure (“we don’t comment on investigations that may or may not be occurring”). Immunity has been given, people have been deposed and extradition has been granted for Guccifer. The question is whether there will be indictments.

  21. Douglas Wiken

    The primary (as in main) reasons to support Hillary (and Bill for that matter) is the character and wretched ethics and self interest of their attackers. The incredible waste of taxpayer money in the retrograde GOP attempts to inflate nothing into a scandal (or indictment) is the real scandal.

    Even so, Hillary displayed arrogance or incompetence in having her own email server after previous experience with the GOP thugs.

    I have no confidence that Hillary would do anything which would actually benefit the 99% of us who are not filthy rich and greatly influential. She seems to have a sense of entitlement unwarranted by achievement or intelligence.

  22. mike from iowa

    Using that metric, Doug W, Hillary prolly shouldn’t bother to breathe while in the WH. There will be a scandalous accusation if she does and I think everyone knows it. I am not a fan of HRC at all and would love to vote for any Dem or Ind not named Drumpf or Clinton,but, America and the world can’t afford a worse dumbass dubya screwing up everything all over again-imho.

  23. bearcreekbat

    Troy, you are correct that the State Department retroactively classified more of Hillary’s emails than her predecessors. Secretary Powell also complained about the retroactive classification of several of his emails, while Secretary Rice blamed the problem on her staff using private emails.

    As for a criminal investigation, it takes very little to establish the required “probable cause” for a federal indictment, especially since the process does not involve a judge, the target, nor the rules of evidence. It is an old saying that any competent prosecutor “could indict a ham sandwich” by controlling the otherwise inadmissible evidence a grand jury is allowed to hear. So far, Hillary appears to be doing better than that proverbial ham sandwich.

    In any event, my main point is to focus on her policy positions rather than speculative allegations unrelated to these policy positions. Since you work in finances, and since you have a deep concern for helping people in need, what is your opinion about the desirability, or lack thereof, of Hillary’s policy positions described in Investopedia?

  24. bearcreekbat

    Douglas, can you identify current policy positions of Hillary that are designed to benefit the 1%. I have looked and looked, but still have not found any. Virtually everything she says she stands for seems designed to help the 99%, rather than the 1%. Which of her policy positions do you find objectionable?

  25. I think what many of us are seeing is that the voters know they have been hoodwinked by both party establishments cycle after cycle. Rosenthal is just another establishment knuckle dragger that seems to think what he says matters. Much like me, his words are just words.

    What you all should take a listen to are the voices in the street, they are mad as hell at the way nothing gets done. If you think Independents and members of both parties like the way things are going, you are probably drunk. People know that for a few, life is good, for the rest, it is not worth a damn. The reason they are drawn to both Trump and Bernie is because they are independent from the cesspool of Washington insiders, bankers and everyone else that has put the screwing to them. Clinton is not an Independent thinker, she is moved by the money and they see that as a big problem for her because nothing will change for them. They feel that with insiders, they will slip further an further into the sinkhole that has them now. The trade deals that Clinton now says she is against speak volumes to them as just more of an example of job losses and more pain. The safe bet is with Bernie. The real gamble is with Clinton and if she gets to be the nominee for the Democratic party, a platform change must take place or there may be a big friggin T on the White House gates.

  26. bearcreekbat

    Jerry, maybe you can wise me up – which of Hillary’s stated policy positions that she currently advances angers people on the streets? Can you identify which of her stated policy positions helps the 1% to the exclusion of the 99%?

  27. Douglas Wiken

    Bearcreek, I noted my fear of her future policies rather than her current promises which seem to flutter in the wind with every new poll. As Jerry above indicates, people are fed up with Washington doing nothing or policies 180 degrees out of what they justifiably need. Hillary’s votes compared with Sanders don’t look good to me. Of course, Trump has no votes, but he is seeing the disconnect between common people and the DC establishment. He may be exploiting that, and he is a loose cannon. I don’t think Hillary gets it. I really don’t know which would be worse or better …Hillary or Trump. I don’t think their campaign rhetoric really tells us much about what either of them would do if elected President. I expect a lot of people to not vote if it is a race between Trump and Hillary. As a friend indicated to me, this is going to be a very interesting election…could be very bad or better than what we have now.

    I think part of what drives Trump and Sanders support is things like reading on a jar of pickles from Wallmart or Sam’s Club that has in very fine print at the bottom “Made in India”. I find it hard to believe that Arkansas can’t raise cucumbers. Reading instruction manuals with type so small magnifying glasses are needed and images so small as to be nearly useless no matter how magnified simply to make room for Spanish language as well as English must aggravate a lot of people…especially those out of work because of the great sucking sound from trade policies.

  28. I would like to answer that question in part bearcreekbat.

    You do not have to dig to far to find many things that are disturbing. This is one. If you look at present day Brazil and see how things are playing out there or with Argentina to see how the history of these places figured into how Clinton ran the office of Secretary of State. I can keep going if you want.

  29. Roger Cornelius

    republicans have been manufacturing and selling Hillary scandals since she first ran for the senate in New York, the disgusting part of the scandal spreaders is that if you repeat them enough times, you believe them after awhile.
    There is nothing in the comment section here that I haven’t heard repeatedly stated, not just here but on the internet.
    Scandals are a very popular and effective weapon against your enemy, in this case it is Hillary. After awhile scandals usually lose their effectiveness, but in the case of HIllary since Democrats are repeating FOX “News” nonsense there is little hope of all this just going away.
    Hillary is poised to win the Democratic nomination just as Donald Trump is poised the republican nomination, after the conventions who will you support.
    Hillary has fake scandals, Donald Trump has real ones. As soon as the general election is over he is scheduled to go on trial for FRAUD charges in relation to Trump U, whether he is elected president or not.

  30. Sorry about not supplying the link for this one So then, take a look at the cabinet that was being picked by the right wing vice president and you will see nothing but Goldman and JP running the show. What does that have to do with the United States, take a look at the trade deals and who was where when they were drawn up. The game is rigged and all voters are finally getting it. They have been stupid for sometime now but there is only so many times you can fake your dog out by acting like your throwing him a bone before he just gets tired of your act. They are connecting the dots and see that they have been played by both.

  31. bearcreekbat

    Douglas, Thanks, I think I get it. You apparently agree with Hillary’s stated policy positions, but think she is faking it when she proposes policies designed to help the middle class and low income families. Since you feel she must be faking, you suspect that if elected she will not actually try to follow through with her stated agenda to help the 99%.

    That is a tough pill for me to swallow since it seems to depend on a conspiracy foundation. I doubt that Hillary and people helping her on the campaign trial have dreamed up up fake policy positions as a Trojan Horse designed to trick all of us so she can fulfill an unstated goal of harming the poor and middle class and help out her rich insider buddies. Even if this was Hillary’s “secret” goal, why wouldn’t the caring folks who are working on her campaign figure it out? They must all be just dupes, or are they in on it with her.

  32. Sorry Roger, but his FBI investigation is not a conspiracy theory, it is the real deal. Before we all keep saying there is nothing there, let them say if officially one way or the other. If anything, this is a Democratic Justice Department as well as FBI that its heads were appointed by Obama.

  33. Roger Cornelius

    So far this year more toddlers have accidentally shot and killed their mother, father, or siblings.

  34. Roger Cornelius

    I am well aware of the Justice Department/FBI into Hillary’s actions.

    Who said anything about conspiracy theories, I’m talking about spreading rumors.

    Shouldn’t Democratic justice be applied to Hillary before she is judged and jailed?

  35. bearcreekbat

    Jerry, thanks but your link doesn’t really address my question about the current economic policies that Hillary says she supports, as described the Investopedia link. As Secretary of State, Hillary had the duty to implement the President’s policies,she could advise and encourage him, but she had no power to make the final decisions. And I haven’t studied in depth what her current views on foreign policy are, although from what I have read she is more hawkish than I would like.

    I am trying to focus on her stated future economic policies if elected. Can you identify any of these stated policy position that you disagree with? Or do you agree with Douglas that Hillary is faking it and trying to trick voters so she can dump on the 99% and help her 1% insider buddies?

  36. bearcreekbat

    Roger, I know! We just have to round up and deport our toddlers ASAP. Be afraid, very afraid!

  37. mike from iowa

    Bear and Roger-murdering toddlers is a small price to pay when the alternative is having the NRA force guns into wombs before the little devils are born so they can summarily execute any woman intent on having an abortion. Pre-meditated mommycide would result in more infant mortalities if the fetus can’t wait until the age of viability. With wingnuts moving that age earlier and earlier,they guarantee more dead babies. Bad wingnuts!

  38. Roger Cornelius

    Just wait Jerry, the NRA with Trump’s help will soon be arming fetuses for self-protection.

  39. Here’s my prediction. Trump will announce Dick Cheney as his running mate and GOP partiers will be fighting each other for spots in line to french kiss Trump’s patootie.

    They won’t know for sure which one is the antichrist, but they will be certain the end times are at hand either way.

  40. mike from iowa

    Obama better shut down the airways and send a plane around to collect Clinton family members and get them safely out of the country before all heck breaks loose when HRC is indicted for masterminding the WTC Muslim Temple.

  41. Arming fetus is alarming. How will that happen Roger? I have heard that the NRA has a long arm, but…do tell.

  42. Clinton’s time as the Secretary of State will be off limits for discussion in the general election because Dick Cheney will be Trump’s running mate. Makes sense to me. But what if the opposition (could be an insurgency coming with Mitt) decides that they have a question about how all of that Secretary of State stuff was done?

  43. And how much did you say the South Dakota Democratic Party has received from the money supposedly dedicated to the down line ticket? No one seems to have a clue. There have been millions raised for the down ticket, where did it go? Conspiracy stuff for sure. Let’s let George Clooney donatesplain it to us. That is some big time money coming in and swirling around like waste in a flushing toilet bowl. Did I mention that all of this is to be used to defeat a lefty while the lefty is only accepting money from small donors.