No New York Values by Gert Innsry   With both major party candidates claiming New York City as  their home base, one would think that the accusation hurled at Trump by Ted Cruz, that he has New York values, would be true for both the Donald and Hillary. Unfortunately, although Hillary does indeed have New York values, Trump does not.

Just what are New York values, anyway? In Cruz’s mind, as he was using the phrase in a derogatory way, he probably meant to imply various unChristian, unAmerican, uncapitalist, unmainstream points of view. If Cruz and his followers are any examples of Christianity, Americans, capitalists and mainstream USA, he’s probably right. New Yorkers, however, would deny that he and his are good exemplars of any of these concepts.

Just what really are New York values? The principal ones are resiliance, tolerance of diversity, comfort with change, striving to get ahead, and a deep commitment to fairness and democracy. No wonder Cruz is so uncomfortable with these values.

How well does Trump embody these? Not well at all.

As for resiliancy, in the face of setbacks, Trump prefers to declare bankruptcy, attack those he deems responsible for crossing him, and whine about the unfairness of it all.

Tolerance of diversity is not his strong suit either. He has attacked Mexicans, hispanics in general,  women, gays and transgendered people, Moslems, people of color, in fact pretty much everyone who does not look or think like him except ex-KGB Russians.

Most of his campaign has been about agreeing with those Americans who are frightened of change, and who want to turn the clock back to a time when they had an uncontested advantage over “others”. Economically, Trump is a Landlord, not an esteemed or popular profession in traditional New York.

As for a commitment to fairness and democracy, his advocacy of torture, spying on religious institutions, a religious test for immigration, and his statements undermining our judicial system, elections, treaties and foreign policy show he does not take the concepts of fairness and democracy seriously.

Definitely not a person with New York values. Let’s hope Hillary measures up better.

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Not a Liar by Sten Grynir   I rise in defense of Donald Trump’s veracity. He has been branded a shameless liar by many who have heard him deny something he said the previous day, available for all to see on video. He has also denied positions he espoused years ago (something most politicians do from time to time). He seems to live in an alternate reality foreign to the rest of us. I have an alternate theory of this behavior, one that does not impugn his truthfulness; furthermore, one that, if true, would align him with Conservatism’s patron saint.

My theory is that Trump is in the early stages of Alzheimer’s. In an article in the New York Times’ science section of Tuesday, July 26, 2006, titled “A New Harbinger of Alzheimer’s”, about behavioral clues pointing to the onset of the illness, the opening paragraph reads:

“”Has the person become agitated, aggressive, irritable or temperamental/” the questionnaire asks. “Does he/she have unrealistic beliefs about his/her power, wealth or skills?”

Not a bad summary of the Donald’s behavior. The denial of yesterday’s televised statements is merely because he in fact does not remember making them. The alternate reality he seems to live in can be ascribed to an attempt to fill in the blanks of a badly incomplete present.

Without a true medical evaluation, we can’t be sure that my theory is correct. It is, indeed, only a guess at this point. But rather than ascribing a weak moral character to him, I prefer to view him as suffering from the early stages of a frightening and incurable illness. If my theory is correct, poor Donald is indeed the rightful heir to the mantle of Ronald Reagan.

It is a tribute to him that despite his illness, he has managed to recognize the deep disaffection, on both economic and social grounds, of the Republican base, from both society and the party, a disaffection that the so-called Republican elite, not handicapped, has managed to miss.

Alibis by Inger Stryn   You can tell when someone is a loser by the fact that they have an alibi for every setback, and blame their poor performance on everyone and everything but themselves. Poor Donald is admitting defeat by exactly this kind of behavior.

He not only has alibis for past losses, but is providing alibis for future ones. A perfect case in point is his statement (contrary to all polls) that the only way he can lose Pennsylvania if there is cheating in “certain areas”, the clear implication being that the election is being rigged by minorities hostile to Trump. His plea for his followers to be vigilant in those districts is an invitation to voter intimidation. Such whining by poor Donald, in advance of the event, is unpleasant to listen to, and beneath the dignity of a candidate who honestly thinks he is winning.

Other favorite whines by poor Donald include the unfairness of the media (which has given him the equivalent of millions of dollars in screen and press time by covering his antics), the machinations of the Republican party establishment to deny him the nomination and then the election, various speakers at the Democratic Convention (who have attacked him unfairly, requiring him top respond by attacking a Gold Star father and mother). One must remember that he complained that the nominating process was “rigged”, until he won the nomination.

At no point does poor Donald acknowledge that he is running a terrible, poorly managed campaign, enlivened only by the spectacle of him repeatedly shooting himself in the foot. He has had three campaign managers by now, an indication that his skills as a businessman do not extend to personnel selection and planning. The constant pleas by his campaign staff to return to or remain on message fail to acknowledge that his only messages are fear and resentment, with no policies of substance to resolve these.

Perhaps if he whined less and planned more, and campaigned more effectively, he would not be in the desperate position he finds himself. Acknowledging that his much-vaunted business skills do not extend to managing a complicated project well would help him get his campaign back on track, while undermining one of its major rationals for existing.

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