Monday, October 17, 2016

Trump and the Polls: It's Not Over until the Fat Lady Sings!

This is an updated version of what I first published on October 17.

(Trump’s chances of winning have improved since then.)

These are tough days and nights for Donald J. Trump. Polls indicate his chances of winning the presidency are fading fast. His only consolation and the only consolation of his fans seems to be “knowledge” that the polls are rigged.
(By contrast: the days since the FBI announced it had more Clinton emails, by way of Anthony Weiner of all people, were days of lost sleep and heavy drinking for those of us who can’t stomach Trump; we are happier this morning, however, now that James Comey has basically said: “Never mind! Nothing new here folks. False alarm.”)

If that isn’t enough, Trump and his fans believe Democrats are going to turn out millions of the deceased to cast ballots from the Great Beyond. The election will apparently resemble a bad version of The Walking Dead.

Trump should be winning, as all his supporters know, because Trump says he should and Trump ran a perfect campaign. His fans know he would get 106% of the popular vote, if the media didn’t hate their man. They know he won all six debates, including one involving Abraham Lincoln. Trump has polls (not rigged!) proving he did. And all Republicans jumping ship or refusing to board from the start are part of a nefarious conspiracy.
(Sarah Palin called them rats!)

Four of the last five men to run for president on the GOP ticket say they don’t support Trump. That includes George H. W. Bush, George W. Bush, John McCain and Mitt Romney. They are all terrible people.

Paul Ryan is a scumbag too.

Trump would win all fifty-two states if it weren’t for these traitors.
(Meanwhile, the VP candidate on the Libertarian ticket has essentially called on supporters to vote for...Hillary Clinton. Go figure! He says a Trump presidency would introduce a world much like George Orwell feared in 1984.)

Considering all the bitter Trump tears, perhaps we might look at a few miscellaneous facts. The same polls Mr. Trump insists are rigged today once showed, during the GOP primaries, that he was always ahead.

Remember those glory days? Remember how Trump always bragged about his big, giant poll numbers?

When did the fix come in? Consider a few trends that bode well for Hillary Clinton. For some reason, Hispanic voters (not illegal immigrants—but living, breathing citizens who can and will cast ballots) don’t like Mr. Trump. In Arizona, on September 13, these voters favored Clinton by 68% to 18%.

In Florida the numbers were 53-29%.
(A poll four days ago, on November 3, has Clinton now leading with Florida Hispanics by a 60-30% margin.)

Then again, these numbers were reported by an actual newspaper—the Washington Post—part of a conspiracy to throw the election to Hillary Clinton. Hispanic voters really loved Trump—because Trump claimed they did. (Hispanic voters also went for President Obama in 2012 and did so in even greater numbers.)

Then, there’s more rigging—this time by Pew Research—to show that voters with a college degree or higher favor Clinton over Trump by 53-29%. (Obama won the same group, but narrowly, four years ago.)

Let’s look at more rigging! Fox News—Trump’s safe spot when he needs to cry on Sean Hannity’s shoulder—admitted Trump was unpopular with African Americans. In August Clinton had 85% support among this demographic. Gary Johnson polled 7%.

Trump had 1%.

Again, the rigging has been “clear” for years. John Kerry, who lost in 2004, won 88% of the African-American vote. In 2012 President Obama swept Mitt Romney aside with 93% of this vote.

Trump does, however, seem to have the KKK vote locked down.
(Even more locked down than before: now that the official newspaper of the KKK has actually endorsed Donald Trump! I mean: you can’t make this stuff up!)

How about women? John Kerry narrowly won with American women, 51-48% in 2004, but lost by a slightly larger margin among men. Obama won the female demographic 56-44% in 2008 and 53-44% in 2012. (Damn rigged voting numbers!) Maybe the GOP could do better if they started supporting equal pay for women, came up with an actual health care plan to replace Obamacare if they do manage to win, and stopped insisting women who are raped have to carry any pregnancy that results to term. Republicans have been losing with women for years—and the Trump “outreach” plan isn’t helping. 

Bragging about grabbing pussy isn’t exactly a strategy to win.

How rigged are the polls? Apparently, very bigly rigged. Last December 59% of American women had an unfavorable opinion of Trump. By March 2016 that number had ballooned to 73%. You could argue loudly—and Donald Trump does—that all these numbers are rigged; but the same sort of polls consistently report Hillary Clinton’s problems. Clinton is the second most-disliked candidate ever to run for president. Rigged poll after rigged poll has shown her with a negative “favorability” rating. Current results average out to 43% favorable, 52% unfavorable.

You can look it up. 

This proves something—in the confused thinking of Donald Trump and his fans—that he absolutely has to be winning!

Only the same polls show the tangerine-colored bombast to be the most disliked candidate in American history. His negative favorability marks are even worse. Currently, 35% of Americans view him favorably.

His “unfavorable” mark is 61%.
(Today the numbers still favor Secretary Clinton: but not by much. Clinton sits at -14; Trump has a score of -19. So he has come up!)

Consider the sheer stupidity of this Trumpian position. Polling data from Arizona indicates he holds a narrow 1 point lead over Clinton, as of today. Similar polls showed Mitt Romney would win the state easily four years ago—and he did, 54-44%. The polls that show Trump narrowly leading today show John McCain (not a hero!!!!) up 16 points on his Democratic challenger. The numbers in Ohio are similar, indicating how poorly the polls are rigged by Democrats and the media and left-wing body snatchers.

The most recent poll of Ohioans shows Trump up 1 point, 42-41%. But the trend of the five most recent polls shows Clinton up 1.6.

Senator Rob Portman, a Republican running in the same battleground, is winning with ease. If the election were today, Portman would clobber his opponent, Ted Strickland, by 16 actual mathematical points.
(Today, Trump leads in Ohio by 3.5 points; Portman now leads by 18. In other words, you have the same basic result. And, as a Democrat, let me say to the GOP, “Thanks for not running Governor John Kasich this year.)

In Florida, “Little Marco” is polling ahead of his opponent. Rubio is up 5. Where Trump is involved, polls go back to being rigged, and he’s down 4.
(Now: Rubio up 3.7; Trump down 0.8.)

The “rigging” is even worse if we turn to FiveThirtyEight, the most highly respected polling website. Here Nate Silver has Trump trailing nationally by 6.8 points. Silver called all fifty states correctly in 2012, whereas the talking heads at Fox News got the election all wrong.

Even more ominously,  for Trump fans—who apparently hate percentages as much as they hate taxes (not that Trump pays), Kenyan Obama and Crooked Hillary—Silver believes polls show Clinton ahead in every one of ten main battleground states.

Rigged polls?

As recently as July 30, Silver had Trump slightly ahead (briefly) and hanging close as late as September 26, the day of the first presidential debate, the day Trump turned in his “winning” performance. (This was followed up by Trump spending a week focusing on how fat a former Miss America was.) Trump never admitted he lost the first debate or lost the second. And if he said in this third debate on Wednesday that he planned to torture critics if elected, send political opponents to military trials in Guantanamo, have patriotic supporters beat up any protesters and bragged that he could get away with grabbing Rudy Giuliani’s wife’s crotch…well…loyal fans would still love him.

The problem, however, for Trump fans is that there aren’t enough of them to form a majority in three weeks.

It’s not impossible that Trump can win—because math is math—and it’s never over until the fat lady sings (probably an unfortunate analogy, considering Mr. Trump’s penchant for insulting American women). That doesn’t mean it isn’t highly unlikely. 

If you don’t believe me, check the betting line in Las Vegas today. Odds makers say, 6-1, Hillary comes out ahead.
(Today, Silver gives Trump a much better chance to win; and if you like Trump, I fear you may have real reason to hope. I mean you have reason to hope. I fear he might win. Anyway, as of right now, 10:45 a.m., the day before the election, Silver gives your side a 33.9% chance to win, almost triple what he had three weeks ago. In fact, he believes, when he looks at the polls, that Trump will win both North Carolina and Florida.
And again: Silver called every state in 2012 right.)

We will find out tomorrow if the pollsters are right.


P. S. Elections are controlled almost entirely at the state level. Polling places, early voting times and dates, absentee ballot notifications, even whether or not felons can vote (in Ohio they can) are set by the states. In the following battleground states, Republicans would have to do the rigging since they control the government: Arizona, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, North Carolina, Ohio and Wisconsin.

And did anyone notice that when Democrats were “stealing” the last two presidential elections, and now plan to steal a third, they proved unable to steal off-year elections in 2010 and 2014 when the GOP took control of both houses of Congress?

If Donald Trump loses this election—and, like Las Vegas bookies, I’m betting he will—he’s going to have no one to blame but himself.
(The betting line today is still 4-1 for Hillary Clinton.)

The Democrats ran a flawed candidate and the Republicans had an excellent shot all along to win. Then Trump started shooting himself in the foot—and the ass—and last and certainly not least, right in the nuts.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Donald Trump's Brilliant, Really Good Tax Plan!

“It’s going to be yuge,” Donald Trump told Sean Hannity’s on Fox News last night. His tax plan, he meant, not his ego. Trump promised as president he would change the United States tax code.

“I have the best plan. The best. I mean, who better to fix the tax code than the guy who pays no taxes whatsoever?” 

“Make sense to me,” Hannity agreed, like a fair-and-balanced version of a ventriloquist dummy, only with better hair.

Trump paused a moment before admitting fat Americans would see taxes increase. “Rosie O’Donnell is going to pay. Bigly,” he sneered.

“Can you believe it,” Trump continued. “People believe I called Alicia Machado, that beauty queen, ‘Miss Piggy.’ I don’t insult people. Sniff. Probably, a bunch of Mexican rapists spread that lie. Or reporters, the lowest form of life. Sniff. Or that Gold Star family, who, and I am not saying this, but many people are saying this, the father is a supporter of ISIS. I would never say anything insulting about a beauty queen. Maybe if she had a face like Carly Fiorina, I might insult her.” Sniff.

“I know you don’t insult people, Donald,” Hannity agreed.

“We’re going to make America great again! So great! My face will be on Mount Rushmore,” Trump explained. “Naturally, it will be gold. I am going to create so many jobs, more than any president in history, more than all the other forty-three combined. I have a really good brain. You know who my three top advisers are?”

Hannity looked perplexed.

“Me, myself and I,” The Donald continued. “I don’t count Obama as one of our presidents, of course. He was never really president. He was born in Hawaii. I think that might be the capital of Kenjah.”

Hannity grinned vapidly and ran a hand through his thickly-gelled hair.

“Here’s my plan,” Trump said. “Billionaires and multi-millionaires will pay no taxes! Not a penny. David and Charles Koch? The Walton family? Zero. I will pay zero. Well, I already do, so that’s no yuge change. Sheldon Adelson will pay zero. That way he can keep donating tens of millions of dollars to GOP politicians to make sure they keep passing tax breaks along to make sure people like us never pay taxes. That lady who jacked up the price of the Epipen—needed to save children’s lives—by 700%? Zero taxes! Think of the jobs she created for emergency room nurses!”

“Brilliant, Donald,” Hannity agreed.

“I am a great businessman, the greatest ever, greater than Martin Shkreli, Ken Lay and Bernie Madoff rolled into one. I created bazillions of jobs, at least in years when I’m wasn’t losing $916 million dollars, or years when I wasn’t declaring bankruptcy four times. Have I mentioned how smart I am?”

“I don’t think you have,” Hannity replied.

“Obama!” Trump spit out the name and grimaced like a man having a difficult bowel movement. “We are going to grow the economy by 10% annually. True, restaurants are going to get rid of unattractive women. But those 2’s and 4’s can work in telemarketing, so I won’t have to look at their ugly faces. All women who work in my White House will be 10’s! Did I mention my plan will create 25 million jobs! In a decade! That’s almost ten years! I am going to make America great again.”

Hannity had just seen Bureau of Labor statistics that showed President Obama had been creating jobs at that same exact pace, 2.46 million annually since 2011; but he decided not to mention it to Fox News viewers. 

He didnt want them to have to think.

“I’m going to use other people’s money,” Trump assured his host. “The money of the America people! The art of the deal! Just like when I was stiffing thousands of workers and companies who had done business with me. Just like Trump University which no longer exists. The super-rich won’t pay taxes. Then they can use the money they don’t pay to hire workers, often at minimum wage, and those workers will pay more taxes, and there you go. Federal budget deficit solved!”

“Genius,” Hannity smiled.

“You know who else won’t be paying taxes? Rupert Murdoch! The top twenty-five hedge fund managers who took home a combined $13 billion last year! And John G. Stumpf, who runs Wells Fargo. That guy is a job-creating machine. That’s exactly what we need in America. Business people should run everything, including the schools. As president I will make Stumpf my Secretary of Treasury.”

A good-looking female intern interrupted the telecast briefly and handed Mr. Hannity a memo.

“That’s a ‘10’ there,” Trump leered as she left. “Boy, if Roger Ailes was still here, he’d be hitting that. Great guy, Ailes. Got yuge TV ratings. He’s advising my campaign, helping win the woman vote back.”

Trump continued. “I am going to use the taxes paid by hotel maids—probably illegal immigrants—hair dressers, bus drivers, auto mechanics, secretaries—hopefully really hot ones—farmers and factory workers and make America great again. Do you know we don’t win anymore in this country, Sean? We haven’t won any wars since George Washington beat the redcoats at Gettysburg.”

Again, Hannity merely grinned.

“By not paying taxes—well, my plan will be the greatest,” Trump insisted. “Billionaires will use the savings to pay for expensive paintings and fancy cars and and gold-plated sinks. This will create jobs for artists, workers in Ferrari plants and gold-plating workers. And those workers won’t belong to unions, either, because wages in this country are already too high. My three top advisers all say I’m right. When one of us talks the others nod in agreement. ‘That guy is the smartest!’ that’s what we say to ourselves.”

Hannity continued to grin; he was doing his usual job.

“I am really smart,” Trump added. “I have stamina. Stamina that Crooked Hillary could never have. I can stay up till 3:00 a.m., flailing away on Twitter, and looking at sex tapes. I will be the best president ever. Melania says I will. All my children from my three marriages agree. I am going to appoint Ivanka as Secretary of State. I am going to make my sons generals. Even the youngest, who is ten.”

“Won’t people protest?” Hannity finally asked. Hannity prides himself on asking tough questions, after all.

“Not when I am president. I will order guards to punch them in the face. I will create jobs by having more guards. You know who is a strong leader! Vladimir Putin! That guy is better than Obama. He invaded Crimea. His pals shot down a civilian airplane with 298 people aboard, including 80 children. That’s strong leadership there! And my guards will wear brown shirts—creating jobs in the garment industry, even if those jobs are located in Bangladesh. I will create more jobs for torturers because we are going to torture suspects in terrorism cases, including American citizens, especially Muslim American citizens, and make America great again. I have a plan to defeat ISIS. I can’t tell you what it is but it will only take, like, fifteen minutes. Once I am in the Oval Office, we will begin sending American citizens to Guantanamo to stand military trial. We are going to stop and frisk African Americans in every corner of the land, because they want law and order and we have to protect the Second Amendment, but the Fifth, not so much.”

“Aren’t you worried,” Hannity wondered, “that if you don’t pay taxes ordinary Americans might ask why they have to pay themselves?”

“They’ll never know. I’m not releasing my taxes! I have a yuge brain. We let the not-smart people pay. Firefighters can pay taxes to support police, police can pay taxes to support soldiers, soldiers can pay taxes to support teachers, teachers can pay taxes to support police. This is called trickle-down economics and it always works great. Everyone is better off in the end, especially the top 1%.”

“Do you have a name for your plan?” Hannity asked as he brought his nightly show to a merciful end.

Trump said he did.

“I call it the Trump-Chump’s-Pay-Taxes-Tax Plan. And it comes with free Trump hats for all.”

Vote for Trump. You'll pay taxes. Billionaires won't.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Donald Trump and His Magic Wall

This post first ran last October. Since we are still waiting for Mexico (or now, maybe, Russia will help us, since Donald Jr. is such a good friend of theirs) to write a check for the Wall, I thought it was time to run it again.

I can’t stand it anymore. If not one person reads this post, I don’t care. I have to vent or my cranium will explode.
First, let me say I consider Donald J. Trump the most un-American candidate ever put forth by any major political party. Strom Thurmond in 1948 was worse, and George Wallace in 1968, but neither had a chance of winning. Trump believes in torture.Trump wants to try American citizens in military courts. (Combine those ideas and see where it leads!) 

He called reporters the lowest form of life,” typical of his repeated dehumanizing comments, and hints at a desire to curtail the free press. He’s for suppressing the right to protest and punching protesters in the face.

So you wonder. If Trump is in favor of the Second Amendment, what about the 1st, 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th?

I taught American history for thirty-three years. I understand there are two sides to any argument—or four—or five thousand. I get why white, working-class Americans, without a racist thought in their minds, support Trump. If my job was in danger of being outsourced to Sri Lanka, I’d be fuming too.

Come to think, I’ve been fuming about what has happened to the average American worker for three decades and more. That’s why I’ve generally voted Democratic since I was first old enough to vote in 1972. I watched as Republicans crushed labor unions in the 80s. They said union workers were greedy. Then Big Business folks shifted jobs from Ohio, Michigan and “Rust Belt” states to low-wage states like Tennessee, Texas and Alabama, where GOP politicians were in control. 

Conservative thinkers proclaimed: “This is good. This is free enterprise at work. We are jacking up profits and CEO pay (now 300 times higher than that of their average employee). While you’re at it how about some really fat tax cuts for Big Business folks, so we can create even more jobs!”

No one seemed to notice that very few new jobs were actually created. Jobs simply shifted from high-wage to low-wage states.

Meanwhile, the average American workers’ wages stagnated and then declined during the early 80s, when Ronald Reagan was in charge. 

(See Figure 3; below; and link here.)

Some Americans are doing very well; probably not you.

In fact, since 1979, the only significant gains for workers came during a seven-year stretch, during the presidency of Bill Clinton (1994-2000), when the bottom 90% saw income increase by 14%.

What happened next? 

Naturally, workers in Tennessee and Texas and Alabama began seeking higher pay. So the Big Business folks scratched their heads and consulted their bank accounts and began hiring as many illegal immigrants as they could. Democrats didn’t do it. Big Government didn’t make them. 

The Big Business folks, heart and soul of the Republican Party, did. And they were glad to do it and stuff giant wads of cash in their own pockets.

Donald J. Trump did it too.

According to Time magazine (August 25, 2016), in an article based on thousands of pages of court records, in 1980, when Trump was building his famed tower in New York City, he pulled an “art of the deal” move. He used hundreds of illegal immigrants from Poland to do demolition and prepare the building site. As the Time story makes clear, those illegal workers were willing to put in twelve-hour shifts without overtime pay, to do the job without safety equipment, to hammer and smash at a much lower hourly rate, and not protest if contributions to social security or pensions were not made. When contractors hired by Trump stiffed the Poles, they were in no position to complain.

Now: let me say before continuing that I do not believe immigrants ruin America. My ancestors were Irish immigrants who labored long and hard, for poor pay, digging the Erie Canal. I do not believe all illegals from Mexico are “rapists.” In fact, you can make a sound argument for a wall on our southern border—and you can make it without sounding like a buffoon, as Trump so often does.

Well, then, what about that magic wall? 

Let’s say Mexico does pay for the wall, as Trump assures supporters it will. Will it keep American jobs IN? Will it create a fiscal force field of some kind? Where have all the good jobs been going? Who has made them disappear? We know millions have been outsourced to China in the last fifteen years.

President Obama—the guy Trump tried to delegitimize for years—didn’t ship a single job to China.

Big Business folks did. (This is why we should choose a businessman for president, I guess.)

By 2012, for example, Apple had shifted all product assembly work overseas, 700,000 jobs to China. Why? Workers in China can’t unionize. (The GOP salivates over that.) The workers in China put in 100 hours a week and companies gyp them out of overtime pay. (See: Trump Tower, above.) Chinese workers earn only a few dollars per day. (See! No minimum wage! Republicans love that too!)

Indeed, it’s easy to predict that Republicans aren’t going to lift their little fingers to help the average worker, even should Trump win. And even a wall 10,000 feet tall on our southern border won’t keep jobs in. The Big Business folks have been bamboozling white, working-class workers with sham promises for years, while screwing them out of their jobs. “Oh, we will protect you,” they say. “The evil Democrats want to take away your 310 million guns. Oh, the evil Democrats want to force you to attend gay weddings and eat rainbow-frosted cake. We, the Big Business folks, we promise you a big tax break!”

For decades, hard-working Americans fell for a monetary bait-and-switch. They took their tax cut crumbs, $500 here, $1,000 there.

The jobs still disappeared.

The average worker still had no pension and got no raise.

Don’t believe me? Read what the Wall Street Journal, mouthpiece of Big Business folks, once had to say. In 2011 the paper noted that during the 2000s corporations cut 2.9 million jobs in the United States while increasing employment 2.4 million overseas. Who were some of the big names in this leave-American-workers-behind rush: Caterpillar, Microsoft, General Electric and Wal-Mart.

The same sordid tale played out across all states, involving workers in all areas of production. Alcoa outsourced jobs. 

Caterpillar decided to build bulldozers overseas. 

Levi Strauss began producing jeans in Indonesia. Check out their employment website for that country today! 

Oklahoma Joe’s joined the exodus—Boomer Sooner in reverse—and shipped jobs to China. (See below.) 

Made in China! Go figure.

And those iconic Chuck Taylor tennis shoes I wore when I was a lad, made by workers right here in the United States?

Those shoes are today produced overseas in Indonesia, Pakistan and Vietnam.

I follow these stories closely. I’m a Democrat, and a liberal, you see. I know Trump’s magic wall won’t keep jobs in; not when Big Business folks ship them out every single day. Yet, I would argue you could produce grills and jeans and Chucks here in the United States, if the Big Business folks cared. 

The Big Business folks don’t care. They bleed green, not red, white and blue.

The GOP has favored out-sourcing jobs—first to low-wage states—then overseas—for decades. The Walton family stuffs their Wal-Mart stores with cheap foreign-made goods, while spending tens of millions to elect GOP tools to state and federal office. They fight incisors and claws to keep wages and benefits low, and howl at the thought of any increase in corporate taxes. Meanwhile, Jim, Alice and S. Robson Walton watched their wealth grow to a combined $97.8 billion in 2016. Sheldon Adelson had enough cash stashed under his bed ($25.2 billion as of today) to allow him to donate $150 million in 2012 to elect GOP politicians, including Mitt Romney, he of the famed 47% speech.

In that speech Romney talked about the blessings for businesses of investing in China. (That part of the speech was generally missed.)

So here’s my prediction. If Trump is elected, the GOP will continue to push trickle-down policies, like the Bush Tax Cuts (2003), promising pie-in-the-sky, always promising—really, this time we mean it —millions of good jobs will result.

(Maybe: jobs in Bangladesh!)

The super rich will get super richer; even when GOP policies fail, as they surely will, to benefit the average worker.

Here, I think it might be relevant to consider a bit of recent evidence. In 2003, with Republicans in control of the White House, net jobs added for the year (with all those great tax cuts) totaled a measly 113,000.

Over the next four years (2004-2007) an average of 2,163,000 jobs were added annually, good, but not great.

Then the economy, with the GOP and the Big Business folks riding high, completely tanked. During 2008, on into January 2009 (before Obama took office), we saw a net loss of 4,360,000 jobs, meaning that during his last six years in the White House President George W. Bush, despite fat tax cuts for fat cats, produced a net 3,548,000 jobs. 

In the next eleven months, till the end of 2009, we suffered a net loss of 4,279,000 more jobs.

It may be convenient to blame those losses in 2009 on President Obama; but to do so you would have to ignore the laws of physics and know little to nothing about the challenges of climbing out of deep recessions and near-depressions.

You would have to be a chump. Or maybe: Sean Hannity.

You should also remember that many of those jobs weren’t “lost.” They were shipped overseas by the people who run Wal-Mart, J. C. Penny, Hanes and GE. According to a report by Harvard University, Big Business motivation was crystal clear. In places like Honduras, desperate workers would take any job no matter how low the pay. In fact, many new employees were children. 

According to the Harvard research team:

The children report being routinely slapped and beaten, sometimes falling down from exhaustion, forced to work 12 to 14 hours a day, even some all-night, 19-to-20-hour shifts, often seven days a week, for wages as low as 6 ½ cents an hour. The wages are so wretchedly low that many of the child workers get up at 5:00 a.m. each morning to brush their teeth using just their finger and ashes from the fire, since they cannot afford a toothbrush or toothpaste.

Then, in 2010, a more positive trend developed. During President Obama’s next six years—even with taxes on the richest Americans slightly raised—even with Obamacare in effect—even with Big Business folks still shipping jobs to Mexico or overseas—conditions gradually improved.

In 2010, 1,135,000 jobs were added to the American economy—not great, but a turn of the red fiscal tide.

Over the next five years (2011-2015), 12,306,000 jobs were added to the economy, an average of 2,461,000 annually, better than anything the GOP managed in the halcyon days of George W. Bush.

Indeed, this healthy trend has continued this year, with an additional 1,452,000 jobs added in the first eight months.

Oh, yes. I forgot.

Donald J. Trump says everything is rigged—from unemployment numbers, to thermometers, to polls, (except when he’s winning), to elections (before they’re held), to the peanut butter and jelly sandwich he had for lunch (not enough jelly; and by the way, did anyone notice that waitress was fat!). Yet, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, we’ve had 71 consecutive months of job growth under Obama. New unemployment claims have been under 300,000 for 81 weeks, the longest stretch since 1970. Consumer confidence today is the highest since before the Great Recession. The stock market has more than doubled with a Democrat ensconced in the Oval Office.

Not bad for a guy born in Kenya, right Mr. Trump?

Oh, wait, no.

You said in the recent debate that Hillary Clinton pushed the birther claim in 2008. You didn’t have anything to do with it. You were as innocent as a babe.

She pushed it in 2008. So you can’t be blamed because your lips kept moving for the next five years, saying, even in February 2015, that you didn’t think President Obama’s long-form birth certificate was real. And you didn’t bother to correct the hate speech of a person at one of your September 2015 rallies, when a questioner said: “We have a problem in this country. It’s called Muslims. We know our current president is one. You know he’s not even an American.” 

You didn’t respond as any fair-minded American should. You didn’t say, “We don’t have a problem with Muslims. We have a problem with terrorists who are Muslim.” 

You didn’t respond to the man in your audience: “Sir, do you realize that the U. S. Constitution says there shall be no religious test to hold any public office. So, if President Obama is a Muslim, it doesn’t matter.”

You responded: “We need this question.”

You pedaled birther lies until just last month, when you realized it was hurting you in the eyes of fair-minded Americans, who make up by far the great majority of the general electorate. Yes. Mrs. Clinton was wrong about that. She said half your supporters were deplorable. That’s not right.

Still, your slippery bigotry—and the hard-line bigotry of a chilling fraction of your core constituents—add to the repellent nature of your candidacy; and that’s another sad story for another sad day.

Who shipped millions of good American jobs overseas?
Not President Obama and the Democrats. Big Business did.