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Thursday, October 20, 2016

How to you answer a deluded Trump supporter?

Let’s try it with Charlestown’s most prominent Trump supporter
By Will Collette

Jim Mageau and his hero. Mageau photo by Will Collette. Trump photo
from Wikipedia Commons
Ever since August 28, when the Providence Journal ran ex-Democrat Jim Mageau’s screed to the editor attacking Hillary Clinton and praising Donald Trump, I have been waiting for the right time to answer.

Jim Mageau is, after all, one of Charlestown’s most well-known political figures for his tumultuous one term as Town Council boss in 2006-8 which reshaped town politics ever since. He’s been mentioned in almost 200 Progressive Charlestown articles (CLICK HERE).

Before he turned into a Trumpnik, Mageau called himself a Democrat, although his brand of Democrat was more commonly found in Charleston, South Carolina rather Charlestown, Rhode Island. 

He was known for his crude remarks, boorish behavior and casual relationship with the truth. Not as bad as his new political hero, but close enough to understand why Mageau decided to give his full-throated support for Trump.

We’re now at the point in the campaign where enough hard, documentary evidence has come out to deal with all the broad points of both campaigns. I’m sure more will come out between now and November 8, but we have enough to see whether or not Mageau’s statements, published over two months ago, stand up to reality.

SPOILER ALERT: they don’t.

Mageau’s letter appears below. His words are in italics. My responses are in bold and note that I have included links to back up each of my statements.

His letter starts with this:

It is curious that the electorate will support a political candidate or elected official who is dishonest and involved in corruption. Hillary Clinton's candidacy is an example of that.

Yes, it is curious that anyone would support a candidate who lies whenever he opens his mouth, who took 9/11 recovery money even though he said he suffered no losses, who doesn’t pay federal income tax, who cheats his workers and contractors, lied about donating to 9/11 charities, and so much more. That’s Donald Trump.

Now what, pray tell, does Trump – or Jim Mageau – actually have as evidence to charge Hillary Clinton with dishonesty or corruption. Answer: nothing.

Trump will not disclose his tax returns, the first time a presidential candidate has refused to do so in decades. That raises questions not only about what taxes he really does pay, but also about how much he earns and is worth, how much he really gives to charity and whether he has business ties to Vladimir Putin and Russian industry.

It is also curious that The Providence Journal has gone to great lengths to expose corruption and unethical behavior by state and local politicians but has done very little to expose Hillary Clinton's abysmal behavior.

Jim – if you, or Trump, or anyone else actually had any proof of Hillary’s so-called “abysmal behavior,” you can bet it would have come out by now. Wikileaks have been publishing thousands of Clinton e-mails without any “smoking guns.”

It's obviously wrong for people to criticize Donald Trump for his verbal blunders and exaggerations while at the same time ignoring Hillary Clinton's blatant lies and corruption. What is the matter with Clinton's supporters? Has the moral decay in our society reached such a low point that honesty and integrity no longer matter?

Again, what the hell are you talking about, Jim? “Blatant lies and corruption?” Trump’s words of hate, racism, sexism, jingoism, etc. are enough to disqualify him. But his ACTIONS as a business cheat, tax cheat, fraud, and sexual predator are, to use Trump’s words, the kind that should put him “in jail.”

It may be true that if Donald Trump wins the election we will have a plain-talking president who sticks his foot in his mouth on occasion and says things that he may regret later. However, it may be that his outspoken candor and leadership are just what our country needs.

I know lots of “plain-talking” people who are not racist, sexist fools who rack up one of the worst Politifact scores for truthfulness and accuracy. Over 70% of Trump’s statements were rated as mostly false, false or “Pants on Fire.”

His ignorant and provocative remarks, especially about national defense, NATO and nuclear weapons have horrified and caused serious worry for American friends and allies around the world. His remarks about Mexico, Syria, immigrants and refugees are a disgrace to the values and history of America.

But one of the many, many problems with Trump is that he has shown throughout the campaign that he has NO FIXED CONVICTIONS. He has flipped and flopped on just about every policy issue. The only consistent things he has said were his insults to women, veterans, immigrants, the disabled, refugees, etc. 

We should not lose sight of the fact that he is a successful businessman and CEO of a multi-million dollar empire with business interests all over the world. He is married to a very intelligent woman who can speak five languages and would bring grace and dignity to the White House as first lady.

Let’s lay to rest this myth of Trump as a successful businessman. He is not. How do you go bankrupt in the casino business? How did he run up the billion-dollar loss that let him skip paying federal income taxes for years?

His businesses fail even though they:
As actual facts show, Trump is nothing more than a puffed-up hustler.

Conversely, the only business experience Hillary Clinton has is in manufacturing lies and selling out the American people. Think about it. If she wins the election we will have a president who is a pathological liar, whose corruption knows no bounds. She has lied to the American people time and time again. She also used her office as secretary of state as a bargaining chip to raise millions of dollars for her family through the Clinton Foundation.

So, other than simply repeat – without evidence – Trump's claim that Hillary Clinton is a corrupt liar, Mageau brings up the Clinton Foundation.

Unlike the Trump Foundation, the Clinton Foundation has actually done a lot of good around the world, earning an A rating from Charity Watch.

On the other hand, The Trump Foundation was just ordered by the New York Attorney General to stop fund-raising because they have not complied with state law requiring accountability. The New York AG is also investigating possible illegal acts by the Trump Foundation, such as using donor money to promote Trump’s campaign or prevent state prosecution.

If she wins, all of her supporters should be excited to know that that her husband Bill will become “first gentleman.” How can it get any better than that? Imagine, having a president who is a pathological liar and a “first gentleman” who is an adulterer, a sexual predator and as corrupt as his wife Hillary.

Bill Clinton has betrayed Hillary’s trust with his infidelities. No one disputes that, including both Bill and Hillary. But unlike serial philanderer, sexual predator, three-time married Donald Trump, they have stayed together.

Donald Trump has made lewd sexual comments about a 10 year old, deliberately walked in on naked Miss Teenage USA contestants, claimed he was entitled to walk into other beauty pageant dressing rooms unannounced because he “was the owner,” lusted after Lindsay Lohan, saying that “deeply troubled teenagers” are always the best in bed.” How about that guy in the Oval Office, Jim?

For you 38 Studios fans, the most prominent figure to defend Trump’s remark about a 10-year old that “in 10 years, I’ll be dating her,” was Curt Schilling.

This only scratches the surface of creepy things Trump has done.

May God bless America.

And, Jim, America will need that if, by some amazing stroke of ignorance by voters or some key strokes by Russian hackers, Trump should win.

But after last night's debate, Jim, it's lights out for your guy.