Democracy Gone Astray

Democracy, being a human construct, needs to be thought of as directionality rather than an object. As such, to understand it requires not so much a description of existing structures and/or other related phenomena but a declaration of intentionality.
This blog aims at creating labeled lists of published infringements of such intentionality, of points in time where democracy strays from its intended directionality. In addition to outright infringements, this blog also collects important contemporary information and/or discussions that impact our socio-political landscape.

All the posts here were published in the electronic media – main-stream as well as fringe, and maintain links to the original texts.

[NOTE: Due to changes I haven't caught on time in the blogging software, all of the 'Original Article' links were nullified between September 11, 2012 and December 11, 2012. My apologies.]

Friday, April 22, 2016

Forget Everything Donald Trump Said. His Real Message Was The Guy Standing Behind Him.

In the wake of a dominant victory in Tuesday’s New York primary, Donald Trump delivered a victory speech that was subdued by his standards. In a sign that he’s possibly toning things down ahead of the general election, the Republican frontrunner avoided the incendiary rhetoric that has characterized his campaign to date.

But Trump made a more subtle incendiary statement by choosing to deliver his victory speech while standing next to 2010 New York gubernatorial candidate Carl Paladino. Paladino, a real estate developer who rode the tea party wave to a surprising victory in that year’s Republican primary before he was trounced by Democrat Andrew Cuomo in the general contest, is mostly remembered for a series of ridiculous and offensive things he said and did (during and before his campaign), including:

— Saying he’d transform some New York prisons into dormitories for welfare recipients, where they could work in state-sponsored jobs, get employment training and take lessons in “personal hygiene.”

“Instead of handing out the welfare checks, we’ll teach people how to earn their check. We’ll teach them personal hygiene… the personal things they don’t get when they come from dysfunctional homes,” he said.

— Forwarding emails containing racial messages about President Obama, birther claims, pornography, and bestiality. When confronted about his emails, Paladino blamed Democrats.

— Receiving $3 million in state tax breaks to revive the economy of Buffalo, but then pocketing the tax refunds while delivering very few jobs.

— Opposing the construction of a “Park51” Islamic community center in the area surrounding the fallen World Trade Center towers in New York City. Paladino promised in a campaign ad to “use the power of eminent domain to stop [the Park51 community center] and make the site a war memorial instead of a monument to those who attacked our country.”

Six years later, Paladino became an outspoken surrogate for Trump in New York, recently telling Fox News that if party insiders deny Trump the nomination during the Republican convention in July, Republican voters should “stay home [in November] and put the Republican Party to bed, once and forever.” Paladino claims he scheduled Trump’s campaign appearances throughout the Empire State, and highlighted his similarities with the Republican frontrunner in a Buffalo News report.

“There’s no question about it,” Paladino said. “We’re unfiltered and speaking what other people are thinking.”

Trump attempted to try to use his victory speech on Tuesday night to moderate his tone and pivot to the general election. But if you were wondering whether Trump has really changed, just look behind him.

Original Article
Author: Aaron Rupar

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