Trump CANNOT Fund His Own Campaign

So Trump is running for President. I'm no Trump fan, but would vote for him if he were the nominee. Before we get too carried away with his flamboyant rhetoric, we need to assess the sincerity of this campaign. The most concise "acid test" of a candidates viability is their plan to finance the campaign.

Hillary has been clear. She'll ramp up the Clinton Money Machine and tap well healed donors and a vast array of previous useful idiots to raise close to $2 Billion. To compete with her, it will take at least as much as Romney raised in 2012 - about $600 Million.

Trump has total cash and marketable securities of about $300 Million. The balance of his highly ill-liquid wealth totals a bit less than $4 Billion. If Trump were serious about funding a Presidential campaign; he would have already re-structured his debt to try to free up AT LEAST and additional $500 Million.

In reality, trying to liquidate half a billion from his property holdings would require complex and time consuming multi-party negotiations that would take months to complete. Of course, now that he's an announced candidate, any such dealings will involve the scrutiny of the FEC - which would make such transactions additionally tedious.  

So, lets be honest. If Trump is serious - he'll need to raise money - just like everyone else. Since he's already declared he WON'T be raising money - it's hard to believe he's serious.

For what it's worth, Trump values his "Brand" at about $3 Billion. (more than 10 times the Forbes valuation) It's likely his "team of accountants" has already projected the "Brand Value" increase of participating in GOP debates, and winning delegates in Iowa and New Hampshire. 

Trump's not really running for President. He's starring in a public reality show.

UPDATE- 7/12/15:

Trump has dominated the GOP political landscape since he announced his campaign. The financial facts stated above are as valid as ever, but the balance of the GOP would do well to understand the value that TRUMP brings to the GOP. Presidential elections are no longer determined by "independents" but rather by "stupid voters."  In mid-term elections, about 80 million reasonably well informed people vote - and the GOP dominates those elections. In Presidential elections an additional 40 million people vote. Those 40 million, mostly "stupid voters" are the people that chose our President. 

Trump has a direct connection with those 40 million people. Trump can introduce them to a GOP that they scarcely knew existed. Trump's status as a reality TV star, Miss USA promoter, and world class blowhard, make him a natural favorite of the "stupid voters." Face it, the GOP needs to get a bigger share of the "stupid vote." None of the 40 million stupid voters are going to listen to 5 minutes of Bobby Jindal - but will wait in line to hear Trump make idiotic proclamations. 

Sure, it would be great if we could just educate people to not be so stupid - but that's a different, and longer term issue. For this election, Trump provides a great opportunity for the balance of the GOP to play off of his celebrity and use the connection to "the stupid" to gain at least half of their votes. The GOP should not be attacking TRUMP, but rather clarifying and explaining the portions of his positions that have merit - and discounting his crazy rantings as rhetoric. 

Trump is showing the way to battle an entrenched opposition media, and reach 40 million "swing voters" - and the GOP seems to be determined to ignore his appeal, and virtually demand those 40 million stupid voter vote for the champion of the stupid - Hillary Clinton.

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David Blatt's 1st Real Coaching Challeng

  The job of coaching the Cleveland Cavaliers  was one of the most difficult jobs in the NBA when David Blatt took the position. Then it got easier. A lot easier. Lebron James decided to return to Cleveland - and suddenly coaching the Cavs was less of a challenge than managing the unrealistic expectation that the Cavs could immediately win an NBA title.

Yet, here they are. In the finals tied 2-2.

More accurately, the Cavs are losing 2-2.

After 3 games of super-human effort - Lebron James proved to be a mere mortal. Steve Kerr's coaching decision to "go small" is being heralded as genius. In truth, it wouldn't have mattered. In fact, if Lebron were operating a full strength, and Mozgov and Thompson were able to score 28 and 13 - the Cavs would've been the blow-out winner. Kerr's coaching didn't win game four - Lebron's fatigue lost it for the Cavs.

-side note about fatigue:

This isn't the "winded," "out of breath" kind of fatigue with which most people are familiar. Most people NEVER exert themselves to the point that muscle tissue begins to deteriorate. Think of weight lifting. First set - 10 reps  - no prob. Second set - 10 reps - straining. Third set - 10 reps - torture. Fourth set - forget it - time for some cardio. This is because of the way human muscle tissue consumes energy stored in the tissue. As the energy is depleted, the task becomes harder. While one can train, and help develop deep reservoirs of muscle energy - none is infinite - and when an athlete pushes beyond the store of energy - the muscle begins to consume itself. This is why power lifters rarely attempt a MAX LIFT more than a couple of times a month. The muscle simply will not effectively recover when MAXED OUT. Lebron has now MAX LIFTED 4 straight games. This is the fatigue of which we speak. It can only be cured by significant rest and limited exertion.

So, David Blatt now faces a real coaching decision.

OPTIONG 1: The safe bet is to stick with his starting 5. The problem is, there is NO chance of beating the Warriors with a fatigued Lebron James. Yes, he may be able to go all out for a couple quarters in Game 5, but even if he does, and they pull out a victory (highly unlikely); he'll never recoup well enough to be anything but a shadow of himself for the next two games. 

Option 2: The bold move. Rest Lebron. Restrict his minutes in game 5. Make the goal of the game to for the Warriors to work hard. Use the bench. Constant pressure defense. If the Warriors stay small, Mozgov can score, hell even Kendrick Perkins can score from 3 feet. In essence, play game 5 as a set up for game 6.

Truth is, no matter what - a game 5 victory for Cleveland is highly unlikely. The only real question is whether or not they return to Cleveland with any chance of winning game 6 on Tuesday. If Lebron spends himself - all out - on Sunday night, flies red eye to Cleveland for a single day of recovery; the Cavs will be crushed in game 6.

Granted - even with a rested 100% Lebron, the Cavs are at best a 50-50 shot to win in game 6.

But that's way better than the 0% shot they have otherwise.

Update: 6/15: Seems Blatt took half my advice. Lebron James played did play 44 minutes and put up a triple double. Unbelievably, 44 minutes is 5 minutes less than in each of the first two games. More importantly, James didn't really MAX OUT last night, and Blatt did use more bench minutes than any other game. It seems Mosgov was being saved for Tuesday - rather than Lebron. In his post game interview, James was not nearly as exhausted as in previous games, and flashed glimpses of "that look" that he gets when he's about to go into beast mode.

Even so, Cavs still need SOME production from someone else. I find it hard to understand Blatts reluctance to go deeper into the bench. Other than Mozgov, the balance of the 7 man rotation have mostly taken up space in the last 2 games. So its hard to understand why the balance of the roster doesn't get a chance to occupy floor space during the Lebron show. 

Summary: Cavs did hold back some last night, and can expect a good energy level Tuesday. Cavs have a good chance to force game 7.

Update: 6/16 - am: I'm thinking Blatt was coaching to "win the series" rather than "win the game" on Sunday. If the Cavs have successfully flipped the "fatigue table" to favor the Cavs tonight - there's a great chance the Cavs will use their "bigs" to pound the Warriors into a 7th game. We'll know a lot more in about 12 hours.

 

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Boehner to Hillary: "Release your File Cabinet!"

So now John Boehner wants HIllary to "Release the Server".

Every time I believe I comprehend how hapless the GOP leadership is; they go a step farther and prove to be more incompetent than I believed. 

This is as stupid as demanding that someone turn over a file cabinet that has been in their sole control for years, in hopes that the owner of the file cabinet never thought of removing incriminating files.

HIllary had complete administrative and physical control over the server. Any fool could delete what they want, keep what they want; then back up the kept files to another drive, melt the original drive, restore the backed up files to a new drive, then melt the backup drive.

In other words, an empty, or at least perfectly clean "file cabinet."

There is NO CHANCE that the drive that currently sits in that server is the original drive. Boehner is doing nothing but offering a life line. If Hillary eventually "turns over" the server; nothing will be found; and she and her cohorts will crow about another "vast right wing conspiracy."

If anyone was serious about this, and I don't believe anyone is, they would begin by...

-demanding she release "Email." That is, "Electronic Mail" in the form it was created. Hillary did not release "Email," she released printed versions of what she alleges are true and accurate printed text of what was in the original "Email."  Anyone with a text editor can open an "Email" file and edit or delete the text. The printed versions contain no evidence of such editing. Also, "Email" is often more than text. Various links, attached images, audio, and video files CANNOT be accurately conveyed in a printed version of an "Email."

-then, with a list of email addresses with whom she corresponded, demand (by subpoena if need be) the email records of those people. It would likely demonstrate almost instantly that Hillary's email evidence is both lacking in completeness and accuracy. Of course this could be done, in part with the "paper versions," - if the email addresses are accurately portrayed, but demanding the electronic versions will require Hillary to admit that after printing - she also "deleted all the other emails too."

In truth, we know NOTHING of Hillary's email. We don't know if she sent 30,000 or 30 emails. We don't know if she deleted 300,000 or 3 emails. We only know what she's told us.

We also know that she conducted all of her electronic correspondence through a private domain and locally run mail server - and we're to believe that none of the thousands of recipients, cc's, or forwarded recipients of Hillary's email ever thought it odd that her email address was not ".gov" - but "clintonemail.com".

Yes, we have a Government capable of surveilling every text, call, and email sent by it's citizens, but when it comes to it's own cabinet heads - the Government becomes Helen Keller.

 

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Would you Have Gone Into Iraq ? - The Right Answer

The current "go to" question of the media to ask GOP Presidential Candidates is:

"Given what we know now, would you have authorized the invasion of Iraq ?"

From Jeb Bush, to Rand Paul, and Ted Cruz; each has offered the wrong answer. That is, they've answered in terms of what we "know" about Iraq's stockpiles of WMD. That was NOT specifically the question. The question asks "what we know NOW; which includes the undeniable incompetence of the Obama Administration and the Clinton State Department.

Accordingly the CORRECT answer is something like this:

"No, had I known that my successor and his Secretary of State would mis-handle the hard fought gains of our brave military; and abandon a struggling but promising Democratic State in the Middle East and encourage the rise of the barbaric group called ISIS - No, of course I wouldn't have authorized the invasion of Iraq."

When the interviewer tries to "re-frame" the question to focus on WMD; the reply should be similar. We could only go on the intelligence known at the time, similarly - the intelligence known when the incompetent President and  Secretary of State Hilllary Clinton failed to negotiate a status of forces agreement; was that the power vacuum left by a US withdrawal would lead to the rise of a militant force like ISIS. It is hard to foresee that a US administration could act so irresponsibly - but knowing that now - of course I wouldn't have authorized the invasion of Iraq.

After about three rounds of this - the question will never be asked again.

Isn't one of our guys smart enough to figure this out?

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Was Romney Talking about Nikki Haley ?

Last week Mitt Romney issued a statement that he would not seek the nomination for President in 2016. In that statement made the following peculiar statement:

... I believe that one of our next generation of Republican leaders, one who may not be as well known as I am today, one who has not yet taken their message across the country, one who is just getting started, may well emerge as being better able to defeat the Democrat nominee. In fact, I expect and hope that to be the case.


Many have perceived the comment to be a swipe at Jeb Bush. Perhaps it is.

I believe it's possible, however, that he may be hinting that a  plan to help organize a campaign for a lessor known candidate. I'm going to speculate that it might be South Carolina Governor, Nikki Haley. The two have a bit of a history, and her endorsement in the South Carolina primary went a long way to diminish Newt Gingrich - who was the "Anti-Romney" candidate of the moment - at the time.

Honestly, I'm a bit surprised that her name hasn't been mentioned more frequently with respect to the 2016 nomination - especially since Hillary Clinton is the presumed Democrat nominee.

  You have to admit - she looks good by comparison....

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