Saturday, February 27, 2016

Paul LePage is Worried About Embarrassing the Republican Party







When an insane, racist bigot who does not even know how to properly veto legislation is worried that Donald Trump is going to embarrass the Republican Party, you know that the Chinese curse about living in interesting times has been visited upon you sevenfold:


The scenario Karl Rove outlined was bleak.


Addressing a luncheon of Republican governors and donors in Washington on Feb. 19, he warned that Donald J. Trump’s increasingly likely nomination would be catastrophic, dooming the party in November. But Mr. Rove, the master strategist of George W. Bush’s campaigns, insisted it was not too late for them to stop Mr. Trump, according to three people present.


At a meeting of Republican governors the next morning, Paul R. LePage of Maine called for action. Seated at a long boardroom table at the Willard Hotel, he erupted in frustration over the state of the 2016 race, saying Mr. Trump’s nomination would deeply wound the Republican Party. Mr. LePage urged the governors to draft an open letter “to the people,” disavowing Mr. Trump and his divisive brand of politics.


The suggestion was not taken up. Since then, Mr. Trump has only gotten stronger, winning two more state contests and collecting the endorsement of Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey.


Whoever wrote this story is not aware of the Internet, Paul LePage, or his many, many transgressions against common decency and insightful public discourse. This is the least politically self-aware piece to appear in the New York Times in about an hour or so.

UPDATE: LePage is worried, but not too worried to endorse Trump. (h/t Mark Warren on Facebook).

What a boob.




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Paul LePage is Worried About Embarrassing the Republican Party


When an insane, racist bigot who does not even know how to properly veto legislation is worried that Donald Trump is going to embarrass the Republican Party, you know that the Chinese curse about living in interesting times has been visited upon you sevenfold:
The scenario Karl Rove outlined was bleak.
Addressing a luncheon of Republican governors and donors in Washington on Feb. 19, he warned that Donald J. Trump’s increasingly likely nomination would be catastrophic, dooming the party in November. But Mr. Rove, the master strategist of George W. Bush’s campaigns, insisted it was not too late for them to stop Mr. Trump, according to three people present.
At a meeting of Republican governors the next morning, Paul R. LePage of Maine called for action. Seated at a long boardroom table at the Willard Hotel, he erupted in frustration over the state of the 2016 race, saying Mr. Trump’s nomination would deeply wound the Republican Party. Mr. LePage urged the governors to draft an open letter “to the people,” disavowing Mr. Trump and his divisive brand of politics.
The suggestion was not taken up. Since then, Mr. Trump has only gotten stronger, winning two more state contests and collecting the endorsement of Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey.
Whoever wrote this story is not aware of the Internet, Paul LePage, or his many, many transgressions against common decency and insightful public discourse. This is the least politically self-aware piece to appear in the New York Times in about an hour or so.

UPDATE: LePage is worried, but not too worried to endorse Trump. (h/t Mark Warren on Facebook).

What a boob.





Friday, February 26, 2016

MSNBC Just Blew Up




Melissa Harris-Perry

Holy cow:

MSNBC host Melissa Harris-Perry is going on strike from her eponymous weekend morning talk show over what she alleges to be a loss of editorial control. In an email sent to staff this week, obtained by The New York Times, Harris-Perry said she feels "worthless" to NBC executives because of recent pre-emptions in coverage, adding, "Our show was taken—without comment or discussion or notice—in the midst of an election season." Moreover, she wrote, “After four years of building an audience, developing a brand and developing trust with our viewers, we were effectively and utterly silenced.” Harris-Perry confirmed to the Times that she will not be in the hosting chair this weekend, and that she does not know the fate of her show. The leaked email also contained direct jabs at some of her most high-profile bosses: “I will not be used as a tool for their purposes. I am not a token, mammy, or little brown bobble head. I am not owned by Lack, Griffin or MSNBC. I love our show. I want it back.”

MSNBC has a long, proud history of exactly this kind of chicanery. Remember Phil Donahue? Remember Ashleigh Banfield? I'm sure you remember Keith Olbermann. They have a serious image problem at MSNBC. They're the liberal network that puts the brakes on liberal content whenever it gets too liberal. They might as well hire half of Fox News and pretend to be conservative.

What a worthless, worthless network.



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MSNBC Just Blew Up

Melissa Harris-Perry
Holy cow:
MSNBC host Melissa Harris-Perry is going on strike from her eponymous weekend morning talk show over what she alleges to be a loss of editorial control. In an email sent to staff this week, obtained by The New York Times, Harris-Perry said she feels "worthless" to NBC executives because of recent pre-emptions in coverage, adding, "Our show was taken—without comment or discussion or notice—in the midst of an election season." Moreover, she wrote, “After four years of building an audience, developing a brand and developing trust with our viewers, we were effectively and utterly silenced.” Harris-Perry confirmed to the Times that she will not be in the hosting chair this weekend, and that she does not know the fate of her show. The leaked email also contained direct jabs at some of her most high-profile bosses: “I will not be used as a tool for their purposes. I am not a token, mammy, or little brown bobble head. I am not owned by Lack, Griffin or MSNBC. I love our show. I want it back.”
MSNBC has a long, proud history of exactly this kind of chicanery. Remember Phil Donahue? Remember Ashleigh Banfield? I'm sure you remember Keith Olbermann. They have a serious image problem at MSNBC. They're the liberal network that puts the brakes on liberal content whenever it gets too liberal. They might as well hire half of Fox News and pretend to be conservative.
What a worthless, worthless network.




What Happens When Rubio Loses His Home State?




Last night's debate was an utter shit show, but that's what we've come to expect. You would think that the Republican National Committee would put a halt to these affairs. You would be wrong.

Marco Rubio went on television this morning and, with reality staring him in the face, acted like he won something:

In a television interview with Matt Lauer on Friday morning, following a successful debate performance, Sen. Marco Rubio called fellow GOP presidential contender Donald Trump “a con artist” about five times. Rubio added, “I admit I’m an underdog.” But he implored those watching to “put a stop to this lunacy” by not voting for Trump. He continued, “We’re on the verge of having someone take over the conservative movement and the Republican Party who’s a con artist.... His target audience is working Americans who are really struggling over the last few years in this economy, but he has spent a career sticking it to working Americans.”

It sure would be nice to see if our working media could come up with something to answer Rubio on that last point--who's been sticking it to working Americans? The billionaire who actually employs people or the guy who wants to completely de-regulate Wall Street and cut taxes on the wealthy? That would be a rude thing to do.

This is not the Rubio we will see around March 15th after he loses his home state of Florida to Donald Trump. But it's the Rubio who can't understand why he's losing, badly. The only thing that can save him is a serious movement of all available goalposts.




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What Happens When Rubio Loses His Home State?


Last night's debate was an utter shit show, but that's what we've come to expect. You would think that the Republican National Committee would put a halt to these affairs. You would be wrong.

Marco Rubio went on television this morning and, with reality staring him in the face, acted like he won something:
In a television interview with Matt Lauer on Friday morning, following a successful debate performance, Sen. Marco Rubio called fellow GOP presidential contender Donald Trump “a con artist” about five times. Rubio added, “I admit I’m an underdog.” But he implored those watching to “put a stop to this lunacy” by not voting for Trump. He continued, “We’re on the verge of having someone take over the conservative movement and the Republican Party who’s a con artist.... His target audience is working Americans who are really struggling over the last few years in this economy, but he has spent a career sticking it to working Americans.”
It sure would be nice to see if our working media could come up with something to answer Rubio on that last point--who's been sticking it to working Americans? The billionaire who actually employs people or the guy who wants to completely de-regulate Wall Street and cut taxes on the wealthy? That would be a rude thing to do.

This is not the Rubio we will see around March 15th after he loses his home state of Florida to Donald Trump. But it's the Rubio who can't understand why he's losing, badly. The only thing that can save him is a serious movement of all available goalposts.



Thursday, February 25, 2016

Romney Just Made Rubio's Financial History an Issue




This is a boat that is similar to the one Marco Rubio paid $80,000 for...


Mitt Romney can't help but step on his own junk:

“One thing I’ll mention is that before I would endorse somebody, I’d want to see their past taxes. We’ve got Cruz, Rubio and Trump -- haven’t released their tax returns. And I’d like to know, you know, have they paid taxes? How much money they made. So we haven’t seen that yet. I’d like to see that. But as we go along here, as the field narrows, I may endorse but that’s not anything immediate.”

Yeah, about that:

In an effort to showcase Sen. Marco Rubio's history of financial struggles, The New York Times reported Tuesday that the Florida Republican had spent "$80,000 for a luxury speedboat" even as he faced outstanding debts.


But while Rubio did indeed spend $80,000 on a boat, the vessel in question is not the glamorous "luxury speedboat" the Times article portrayed. It is, in fact, an offshore fishing boat.


On Tuesday, Rubio spokesperson Alex Conant sent POLITICO a link to a website showing the make and model of the boat Rubio owns: an EdgeWater 245CC Deep-V Center Console. The manufacturer, Edgewater, notes that the boat is perfect for "safety-minded family boaters and avid anglers." In a place like Miami, home to billionaires and stars who have multimillion-dollar yachts, an “$80,000 luxury boat” can seem like a contradiction.


Rubio’s campaign said his boat purchase included two new 150-horsepower 4-stroke Yamaha engines, a relatively standard amount of horsepower. According to eBay, each engine could cost as much as $16,000 — making the value of the boat hull itself less than $80,000.


The Times reported that Rubio "splurged" on this "extravagant purchase" after receiving an $800,000 advance on a book deal. "At the time, Mr. Rubio confided to a friend that it was a potentially inadvisable outlay that he could not resist," the article stated. "The 24-foot boat, he said, fulfilled a dream."


The Times reported that this purchase reflected "a series of decisions over the past 15 years that experts called imprudent: significant debts; a penchant to spend heavily on luxury items like the boat and the lease of a $50,000 2015 Audi Q7; a strikingly low savings rate, even when Mr. Rubio was earning large sums; and inattentive accounting that led to years of unpaid local government fees."

If this is how Romney helps the Rubio campaign, it's a safe bet that Marco will be back to not going to Senate hearings in a month or so. One thing you don't want to do when losing to a billionaire is make the fact that your poor-as-hell candidate doesn't have much of a savings account and can't manage his own finances.



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Romney Just Made Rubio's Financial History an Issue

This is a boat that is similar to the one Marco Rubio paid $80,000 for...

Mitt Romney can't help but step on his own junk:
“One thing I’ll mention is that before I would endorse somebody, I’d want to see their past taxes. We’ve got Cruz, Rubio and Trump -- haven’t released their tax returns. And I’d like to know, you know, have they paid taxes? How much money they made. So we haven’t seen that yet. I’d like to see that. But as we go along here, as the field narrows, I may endorse but that’s not anything immediate.”
Yeah, about that:
In an effort to showcase Sen. Marco Rubio's history of financial struggles, The New York Times reported Tuesday that the Florida Republican had spent "$80,000 for a luxury speedboat" even as he faced outstanding debts.
But while Rubio did indeed spend $80,000 on a boat, the vessel in question is not the glamorous "luxury speedboat" the Times article portrayed. It is, in fact, an offshore fishing boat.
On Tuesday, Rubio spokesperson Alex Conant sent POLITICO a link to a website showing the make and model of the boat Rubio owns: an EdgeWater 245CC Deep-V Center Console. The manufacturer, Edgewater, notes that the boat is perfect for "safety-minded family boaters and avid anglers." In a place like Miami, home to billionaires and stars who have multimillion-dollar yachts, an “$80,000 luxury boat” can seem like a contradiction.
Rubio’s campaign said his boat purchase included two new 150-horsepower 4-stroke Yamaha engines, a relatively standard amount of horsepower. According to eBay, each engine could cost as much as $16,000 — making the value of the boat hull itself less than $80,000.
The Times reported that Rubio "splurged" on this "extravagant purchase" after receiving an $800,000 advance on a book deal. "At the time, Mr. Rubio confided to a friend that it was a potentially inadvisable outlay that he could not resist," the article stated. "The 24-foot boat, he said, fulfilled a dream."
The Times reported that this purchase reflected "a series of decisions over the past 15 years that experts called imprudent: significant debts; a penchant to spend heavily on luxury items like the boat and the lease of a $50,000 2015 Audi Q7; a strikingly low savings rate, even when Mr. Rubio was earning large sums; and inattentive accounting that led to years of unpaid local government fees."
If this is how Romney helps the Rubio campaign, it's a safe bet that Marco will be back to not going to Senate hearings in a month or so. One thing you don't want to do when losing to a billionaire is make the fact that your poor-as-hell candidate doesn't have much of a savings account and can't manage his own finances.



Captain Calamities




Incompetence seems to be a way of life now:

A hapless American sailor who has been rescued nine times while trying to cross the Atlantic has admitted he is on the verge of finally quitting his calamitous voyage.


Steve Shapiro, a 71-year-old screenwriter from Pebble Beach, California, bought the 44-foot "Nora" in Norway in July. He planned to sail the yacht all the way to Maine by August.


But the expedition home has been marred by mishap after mishap.


Shapiro, along with his 71-year-old sailing partner Bob Weise, has required help from emergency crews in Norway, Denmark, Ireland and the U.K.


The wayward sailors have been met with particular fury in Britain, where rescues were conducted by the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI), a charity that spends thousands of dollars on each mission and relies on public donations to stay afloat.

There are so many things that people can do nowadays. They can go online, buy a boat, and then go sail it without having to know anything. It's easy! You just type in your credit card. They might make you sign papers, but so what?

As a society, we've done a fabulous job of preventing calamity from killing people. We have first responders, rescuers, planners, observers, monitors, and helpers. We have a whole infrastructure designed to keep people from being their own worst enemy. And yet, we haven't created anything that teaches common sense to idiots. It's as if we assume that bumbling jackasses are there for us to save so we can feel good about ourselves.




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Captain Calamities


Incompetence seems to be a way of life now:
A hapless American sailor who has been rescued nine times while trying to cross the Atlantic has admitted he is on the verge of finally quitting his calamitous voyage.
Steve Shapiro, a 71-year-old screenwriter from Pebble Beach, California, bought the 44-foot "Nora" in Norway in July. He planned to sail the yacht all the way to Maine by August.
But the expedition home has been marred by mishap after mishap.
Shapiro, along with his 71-year-old sailing partner Bob Weise, has required help from emergency crews in Norway, Denmark, Ireland and the U.K.
The wayward sailors have been met with particular fury in Britain, where rescues were conducted by the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI), a charity that spends thousands of dollars on each mission and relies on public donations to stay afloat.
There are so many things that people can do nowadays. They can go online, buy a boat, and then go sail it without having to know anything. It's easy! You just type in your credit card. They might make you sign papers, but so what?

As a society, we've done a fabulous job of preventing calamity from killing people. We have first responders, rescuers, planners, observers, monitors, and helpers. We have a whole infrastructure designed to keep people from being their own worst enemy. And yet, we haven't created anything that teaches common sense to idiots. It's as if we assume that bumbling jackasses are there for us to save so we can feel good about ourselves.



Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Yeah No




Nonsense:

Let me lay down a marker: If either Donald Trump or Ted Cruz is the Republican nominee for president, I predict that John Kasich will jump the GOP ship and agree to run as Hillary Clinton’s vice president. The resulting ticket will virtually sweep the table on election night, create a new generation of “Kasich Democrats” and send the disarrayed and dismayed Trumpublican Party for a long, long walk in the dark, dark woods.


Sound implausible? Maybe. Prognosticating has been a dangerous business this election cycle. I was one of the many pundits laughing off Donald Trump in the early days. I bet that Scott Walker would be the one to thread the needle between establishment appeal and right wing red meat. I was wrong then and I could be now. This election defies description, plausibility, most of the even basic ideals of civility and certainly logic. Nobody knows nothing about how Election Day 2016 will pan out. But keeping that in mind, this is why a Clinton/Kasich team up makes a great deal of sense.

John Kasich is a partisan extremist who has dedicated himself to the destruction of women's rights in Ohio. He opposes everything Hillary Clinton stands for. There's no way she would pick Kasich for anything other than a kick in the nuts. You can only get free of this sort of contrarianism if you swallow this paragraph whole:

After all, no matter how much she tries to pretend otherwise (and she should stop trying!), Hillary Clinton is no progressive. She’s the very definition of liberal centrism—hawkish on foreign policy, protecting big business first and our social safety net second, continuously evolving on social issues but temperamentally favoring triangulation over throwing oneself on a pyre of principles.

Hillary is not a progressive because she has a voting record in the United States Senate? Really? How does that square with the fact that she spent a good amount of that time in the minority and in opposition to George W. Bush's administration? How does that square with the fact that her record on women's issues is better than anyone running for President by a country mile? Instead of a thinkpiece, it's just another smear designed to help Bernie Sanders, nothing more.

Somebody got paid to write this? Unpossible, I would have to say. The art of editing has died.




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Yeah No


Nonsense:
Let me lay down a marker: If either Donald Trump or Ted Cruz is the Republican nominee for president, I predict that John Kasich will jump the GOP ship and agree to run as Hillary Clinton’s vice president. The resulting ticket will virtually sweep the table on election night, create a new generation of “Kasich Democrats” and send the disarrayed and dismayed Trumpublican Party for a long, long walk in the dark, dark woods.
Sound implausible? Maybe. Prognosticating has been a dangerous business this election cycle. I was one of the many pundits laughing off Donald Trump in the early days. I bet that Scott Walker would be the one to thread the needle between establishment appeal and right wing red meat. I was wrong then and I could be now. This election defies description, plausibility, most of the even basic ideals of civility and certainly logic. Nobody knows nothing about how Election Day 2016 will pan out. But keeping that in mind, this is why a Clinton/Kasich team up makes a great deal of sense.
John Kasich is a partisan extremist who has dedicated himself to the destruction of women's rights in Ohio. He opposes everything Hillary Clinton stands for. There's no way she would pick Kasich for anything other than a kick in the nuts. You can only get free of this sort of contrarianism if you swallow this paragraph whole:
After all, no matter how much she tries to pretend otherwise (and she should stop trying!), Hillary Clinton is no progressive. She’s the very definition of liberal centrism—hawkish on foreign policy, protecting big business first and our social safety net second, continuously evolving on social issues but temperamentally favoring triangulation over throwing oneself on a pyre of principles.
Hillary is not a progressive because she has a voting record in the United States Senate? Really? How does that square with the fact that she spent a good amount of that time in the minority and in opposition to George W. Bush's administration? How does that square with the fact that her record on women's issues is better than anyone running for President by a country mile? Instead of a thinkpiece, it's just another smear designed to help Bernie Sanders, nothing more.

Somebody got paid to write this? Unpossible, I would have to say. The art of editing has died.



Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Roger Stone Fired From CNN




Oh, come on. The people who book guests at CNN did not know who Roger Stone really was?

Just a day after Media Matters, and then this website, surfaced new and old sexist and racist tweets written by ex-Donald Trump operative and part-time CNN talking head Roger Stone, the network announced it will stop inviting him on air.

Stone's ratfucking fingerprints are everywhere because he has always been proud of the work he has done. His personal life was national news when the Bob Dole campaign got rid of him. Stone is so well known for being over the top that there's only one explanation for why CNN wanted him on the air in the first place--because everyone else they book is boring as dry toast.

They knew who Stone was. They booked him anyway. Once they got caught, they had to back away from him like the cowards they are.




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Roger Stone Fired From CNN


Oh, come on. The people who book guests at CNN did not know who Roger Stone really was?
Just a day after Media Matters, and then this website, surfaced new and old sexist and racist tweets written by ex-Donald Trump operative and part-time CNN talking head Roger Stone, the network announced it will stop inviting him on air.
Stone's ratfucking fingerprints are everywhere because he has always been proud of the work he has done. His personal life was national news when the Bob Dole campaign got rid of him. Stone is so well known for being over the top that there's only one explanation for why CNN wanted him on the air in the first place--because everyone else they book is boring as dry toast.

They knew who Stone was. They booked him anyway. Once they got caught, they had to back away from him like the cowards they are.





Ben Carson is Still Running For President




This is what a true grifter says to keep his name in the news:

Carson, speaking during a half-hour sit-down with POLITICO’s “Off Message” podcast as he waited for the results of Saturday’s South Carolina primary (he finished sixth out of six), laid out his views on racism – and his belief that his experience as poor black kid in 1960s Detroit represents the real experience of his people in way that Barack Obama could never understand.
“He’s an ‘African’ American. He was, you know, raised white,” said the world-renowned neurosurgeon, whose single mother worked three jobs – and occasionally relied on government aid – to elevate Carson and his older brother from the grinding poverty of ghetto life.
“I mean, like most Americans, I was proud that we broke the color barrier when he was elected, but … he didn’t grow up like I grew up … Many of his formative years were spent in Indonesia. So, for him to, you know, claim that, you know, he identifies with the experience of black Americans, I think, is a bit of a stretch.”


At one point, the President was too "exotic" for the likes of Cokie Roberts and the Washington Beltway crowd. He was foreign, he'd lived in foreign countries, and he vacationed in Hawaii, which no Americans ever do. Now, the problem with the president is he was "raised white." Really? I thought that when he was raised in the Madrassa they made him too Muslim. Then, when Reverend what's-his-ass got his hands on him in Chicago, they made him too radically Black Panther-ish. For the last seven years, the man voted into office has faced every slur and every attempt to take away his legitimacy to lead this country with grace and dignity--the kind of grace and dignity Ben Carson couldn't display while falling asleep standing up in public.





Honestly, when do these people stop hating the president? Why haven't they impeached him already? Will we get to spend the next thirty years hearing this kind of garbage out of people who can't get anyone to believe in their own campaign for higher office?



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Ben Carson is Still Running For President


This is what a true grifter says to keep his name in the news:
Carson, speaking during a half-hour sit-down with POLITICO’s “Off Message” podcast as he waited for the results of Saturday’s South Carolina primary (he finished sixth out of six), laid out his views on racism – and his belief that his experience as poor black kid in 1960s Detroit represents the real experience of his people in way that Barack Obama could never understand.
“He’s an ‘African’ American. He was, you know, raised white,” said the world-renowned neurosurgeon, whose single mother worked three jobs – and occasionally relied on government aid – to elevate Carson and his older brother from the grinding poverty of ghetto life.
“I mean, like most Americans, I was proud that we broke the color barrier when he was elected, but … he didn’t grow up like I grew up … Many of his formative years were spent in Indonesia. So, for him to, you know, claim that, you know, he identifies with the experience of black Americans, I think, is a bit of a stretch.”
At one point, the President was too "exotic" for the likes of Cokie Roberts and the Washington Beltway crowd. He was foreign, he'd lived in foreign countries, and he vacationed in Hawaii, which no Americans ever do. Now, the problem with the president is he was "raised white." Really? I thought that when he was raised in the Madrassa they made him too Muslim. Then, when Reverend what's-his-ass got his hands on him in Chicago, they made him too radically Black Panther-ish. For the last seven years, the man voted into office has faced every slur and every attempt to take away his legitimacy to lead this country with grace and dignity--the kind of grace and dignity Ben Carson couldn't display while falling asleep standing up in public.

Honestly, when do these people stop hating the president? Why haven't they impeached him already? Will we get to spend the next thirty years hearing this kind of garbage out of people who can't get anyone to believe in their own campaign for higher office?



Monday, February 22, 2016

Young People Still Don't Vote




You know, this kind of article just had to be written:

When Bernie Sanders won New Hampshire by a wide margin, he was understandably excited. "Because of a huge voter turnout — and I say huge," he said afterward, drawing out the "u" sound in his distinctive Brooklyn accent, "we won." The turnout overall was not that huge, but Sanders still received more votes than any previous Democrat in the state by a wide margin.


After Nevada, Sanders's worst loss so far, his analysis was different. "What I've said over and over again," he said on "Meet the Press," "we will do well when young people, when working-class people come out. We do not do well when the voter turnout is not large. We did not do as good a job as I had wanted to bring out a large turnout."


Sanders is correct that his campaign comes down to young voters. Less so working class voters, it seems; in Nevada, Clinton won low-income voters and Sanders's margin among those earning less than $50,000 a year in Iowa was under 10 points. But among young voters? Sanders is a runaway favorite, earning multiples of Clinton's support. In Iowa and Nevada, voters under 30 went 6 to 1 for Sanders. In New Hampshire, 5 to 1.


The age split is probably even a more important split than the one on race, in fact. In Nevada entrance polls, younger Hispanic voters backed Sanders heavily, while older Hispanic voters didn't. The Wall Street Journal reports a similar split among African American voters.


In the two states Sanders lost -- Iowa and Nevada -- young voters turned out much less versus their share of the population (as of the most recent Census estimates) than in New Hampshire. Those aged 18 to 30 are a smaller percentage of the population in New Hampshire than they are in Iowa or Nevada, but they turned out about as much in this year's contests. (There are margins of error on these that are not insignificant, but that's not important at this point.)


I'm sure there will be thinkpieces that refute all of this, but what I think has happened is that the Sanders campaign built itself up on a 1960s-styled idealism that is going to resonate for a few more cycles. Nostalgia drives his appeal, and it's an appeal that I can understand. I'd love to have a viable candidate who is as far left as Sanders--who wouldn't if you believe in the Democratic Party and liberalism in general? I just keep running up against a thing called reality.





America is way more ready for Clinton than it is for open socialism. You could say that Sanders is twenty years too early or seventy years too late--take your pick.





Reality dictates that whoever gets elected in November will go up against a divided Congress. The Republicans will control the House until we either solve the problem of Gerrymandering or, duh, solve the problem of Gerrymandering. I don't even think it comes down to money because look what's happening in North Carolina? A state that drifts blue then red then blue again is a state that is probably at home dealing with politicians who game the system. The Democratic Party needs a candidate who is going to be able to control and motivate their base and strike unpopular compromises.





Hillary Clinton's middle name might as well be "unpopular compromise" because that's what her presidency will look like. Surprise! It'll look like Obama's and it will look like her husband's. It would be great if it were otherwise.





Sanders refuses to accept the reality of a presidency that makes unpopular compromises. He used phony pie-in-the-sky numbers to talk up his policy proposals, which are going to be dead on arrival in the House. He tried to game the system and he bet on young people voting. Guess what? They don't vote.




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Young People Still Don't Vote


You know, this kind of article just had to be written:
When Bernie Sanders won New Hampshire by a wide margin, he was understandably excited. "Because of a huge voter turnout — and I say huge," he said afterward, drawing out the "u" sound in his distinctive Brooklyn accent, "we won." The turnout overall was not that huge, but Sanders still received more votes than any previous Democrat in the state by a wide margin.
After Nevada, Sanders's worst loss so far, his analysis was different. "What I've said over and over again," he said on "Meet the Press," "we will do well when young people, when working-class people come out. We do not do well when the voter turnout is not large. We did not do as good a job as I had wanted to bring out a large turnout."
Sanders is correct that his campaign comes down to young voters. Less so working class voters, it seems; in Nevada, Clinton won low-income voters and Sanders's margin among those earning less than $50,000 a year in Iowa was under 10 points. But among young voters? Sanders is a runaway favorite, earning multiples of Clinton's support. In Iowa and Nevada, voters under 30 went 6 to 1 for Sanders. In New Hampshire, 5 to 1.
The age split is probably even a more important split than the one on race, in fact. In Nevada entrance polls, younger Hispanic voters backed Sanders heavily, while older Hispanic voters didn't. The Wall Street Journal reports a similar split among African American voters.
In the two states Sanders lost -- Iowa and Nevada -- young voters turned out much less versus their share of the population (as of the most recent Census estimates) than in New Hampshire. Those aged 18 to 30 are a smaller percentage of the population in New Hampshire than they are in Iowa or Nevada, but they turned out about as much in this year's contests. (There are margins of error on these that are not insignificant, but that's not important at this point.)
I'm sure there will be thinkpieces that refute all of this, but what I think has happened is that the Sanders campaign built itself up on a 1960s-styled idealism that is going to resonate for a few more cycles. Nostalgia drives his appeal, and it's an appeal that I can understand. I'd love to have a viable candidate who is as far left as Sanders--who wouldn't if you believe in the Democratic Party and liberalism in general? I just keep running up against a thing called reality.

America is way more ready for Clinton than it is for open socialism. You could say that Sanders is twenty years too early or seventy years too late--take your pick.

Reality dictates that whoever gets elected in November will go up against a divided Congress. The Republicans will control the House until we either solve the problem of Gerrymandering or, duh, solve the problem of Gerrymandering. I don't even think it comes down to money because look what's happening in North Carolina? A state that drifts blue then red then blue again is a state that is probably at home dealing with politicians who game the system. The Democratic Party needs a candidate who is going to be able to control and motivate their base and strike unpopular compromises.

Hillary Clinton's middle name might as well be "unpopular compromise" because that's what her presidency will look like. Surprise! It'll look like Obama's and it will look like her husband's. It would be great if it were otherwise.

Sanders refuses to accept the reality of a presidency that makes unpopular compromises. He used phony pie-in-the-sky numbers to talk up his policy proposals, which are going to be dead on arrival in the House. He tried to game the system and he bet on young people voting. Guess what? They don't vote.



Sunday, February 21, 2016

No More Bushes Ever




This is the end of them:

Haunted by his famous last name and perpetually stuck in the shadows of his anti-establishment rivals, Jeb Bush repeatedly confronted rejection by voters and frustrating setbacks throughout the 2016 presidential race.


In South Carolina Saturday night Bush suspended his White House campaign and acknowledged a painful reality: The country was not interested in a third President Bush.


Bush's disappointing finish in the Palmetto State became the final straw for his floundering campaign. The end was all the more personal because the former Florida governor had poured his energy into the state, invoking his family's political legacy at one campaign stop after another and facing down voters who questioned his campaign strategy.


America is done with everything named Bush. And the same cannot be said of everything named Clinton because, hell, eight years of peace and prosperity sounds good to me right about now. We could use more of that.



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No More Bushes Ever


This is the end of them:
Haunted by his famous last name and perpetually stuck in the shadows of his anti-establishment rivals, Jeb Bush repeatedly confronted rejection by voters and frustrating setbacks throughout the 2016 presidential race.
In South Carolina Saturday night Bush suspended his White House campaign and acknowledged a painful reality: The country was not interested in a third President Bush.
Bush's disappointing finish in the Palmetto State became the final straw for his floundering campaign. The end was all the more personal because the former Florida governor had poured his energy into the state, invoking his family's political legacy at one campaign stop after another and facing down voters who questioned his campaign strategy.
America is done with everything named Bush. And the same cannot be said of everything named Clinton because, hell, eight years of peace and prosperity sounds good to me right about now. We could use more of that.




Saturday, February 20, 2016

The Joke is On All of Us




If you viewed what's happening in American politics through the prism of the last ten years, there really isn't anything to be outraged about here. Donald Trump is a celebrity running for President. The fact that he says outrageous things is a feature, not a bug with this man. He has to keep saying ridiculous shit because the media will stop paying attention to the horserace if one of the horses has "low energy" and no fire in the belly. When Trump makes up something horrible and racist and says it to cheering crowds, it means that the modern American political arena is operating under normal conditions. Really, that's what it means.

If you viewed what's happening in American politics through the prism of the last fifty years, oh, shit. Yeah, it's bad. It's really, really bad. I mean, awful in all the bad ways.

I want to do a compare and contrast. Here's what Trump reportedly said:

Trump repeated—favorably—an apparent myth about how General John Pershing summarily executed dozens of Muslim prisoners in the Philippines with tainted ammunition during a guerrilla war against the occupying United States. “He took fifty bullets, and he dipped them in pig’s blood,” Trump said. “And he had his men load his rifles and he lined up the fifty people, and they shot 49 of those people. And the fiftieth person he said ‘You go back to your people and you tell them what happened.’ And for 25 years there wasn’t a problem, okay?"


The moral of the tale, according to Trump: “We better start getting tough and we better start getting vigilant, and we better start using our heads or we’re not gonna have a country, folks.”

I've picked a random speech from American political history. This is a sampling of Adlai Stevenson's acceptance speech when he became the nominee in 1952:

It was always accounted a virtue in a man to love his country. With us it is now something more than a virtue. It is a necessity, a condition of survival. When an American says that he loves his country, he means not only that he loves the New England hills, the prairies glistening in the sun, the wide and rising plains, the great mountains, and the sea. He means that he loves an inner air, an inner light in which freedom lives and in which a man can draw the breath of self-respect.


Men who have offered their lives for the country know that patriotism is not the fear of something; it is the love of something. Patriotism with us is not the hatred of Russia; it is the love of this Republic and of the ideal of liberty of man and mind in which it was born, and to which this Republic is dedicated.


With this patriotism—patriotism in its large and wholesome meaning—America can master its power and turn it to the noble cause of peace. We can maintain military power without militarism; political power without oppression; and moral power without compulsion or complacency.


The road we travel is long, but at the end lies the grail of peace. And in the valley of peace we see the faint outlines of a new world, fertile and strong. It is odd that one of the keys to abundance should have been handed to civilization on a platter of destruction. But the power of the atom to work evil give only the merest hint of its power for good.
I believe that man stands on the eve of his greatest day. I know too, that that day is not a gift but a prize—that we shall not reach it until we have won it.

I scratch my head and I know one thing--Trump will only get more popular. Trump will only get stronger. Trump will win the nomination of the Republican Party because there's no one else who wants it more. His campaign would have to get really, really boring and policy oriented to make that happen.

The blood of pigs. Used on bullets. Bullets that killed human beings. Yeah, we've found the basement and it's only going to go lower and get worse. Yay!



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The Joke is On All of Us


If you viewed what's happening in American politics through the prism of the last ten years, there really isn't anything to be outraged about here. Donald Trump is a celebrity running for President. The fact that he says outrageous things is a feature, not a bug with this man. He has to keep saying ridiculous shit because the media will stop paying attention to the horserace if one of the horses has "low energy" and no fire in the belly. When Trump makes up something horrible and racist and says it to cheering crowds, it means that the modern American political arena is operating under normal conditions. Really, that's what it means.

If you viewed what's happening in American politics through the prism of the last fifty years, oh, shit. Yeah, it's bad. It's really, really bad. I mean, awful in all the bad ways.

I want to do a compare and contrast. Here's what Trump reportedly said:
Trump repeated—favorably—an apparent myth about how General John Pershing summarily executed dozens of Muslim prisoners in the Philippines with tainted ammunition during a guerrilla war against the occupying United States. “He took fifty bullets, and he dipped them in pig’s blood,” Trump said. “And he had his men load his rifles and he lined up the fifty people, and they shot 49 of those people. And the fiftieth person he said ‘You go back to your people and you tell them what happened.’ And for 25 years there wasn’t a problem, okay?"
The moral of the tale, according to Trump: “We better start getting tough and we better start getting vigilant, and we better start using our heads or we’re not gonna have a country, folks.”
I've picked a random speech from American political history. This is a sampling of Adlai Stevenson's acceptance speech when he became the nominee in 1952:
It was always accounted a virtue in a man to love his country. With us it is now something more than a virtue. It is a necessity, a condition of survival. When an American says that he loves his country, he means not only that he loves the New England hills, the prairies glistening in the sun, the wide and rising plains, the great mountains, and the sea. He means that he loves an inner air, an inner light in which freedom lives and in which a man can draw the breath of self-respect.
Men who have offered their lives for the country know that patriotism is not the fear of something; it is the love of something. Patriotism with us is not the hatred of Russia; it is the love of this Republic and of the ideal of liberty of man and mind in which it was born, and to which this Republic is dedicated.
With this patriotism—patriotism in its large and wholesome meaning—America can master its power and turn it to the noble cause of peace. We can maintain military power without militarism; political power without oppression; and moral power without compulsion or complacency.
The road we travel is long, but at the end lies the grail of peace. And in the valley of peace we see the faint outlines of a new world, fertile and strong. It is odd that one of the keys to abundance should have been handed to civilization on a platter of destruction. But the power of the atom to work evil give only the merest hint of its power for good.
I believe that man stands on the eve of his greatest day. I know too, that that day is not a gift but a prize—that we shall not reach it until we have won it.
I scratch my head and I know one thing--Trump will only get more popular. Trump will only get stronger. Trump will win the nomination of the Republican Party because there's no one else who wants it more. His campaign would have to get really, really boring and policy oriented to make that happen.

The blood of pigs. Used on bullets. Bullets that killed human beings. Yeah, we've found the basement and it's only going to go lower and get worse. Yay!





Friday, February 19, 2016

Seinfeld is Down and Out




Somehow, Jerry Seinfeld ended up broke and his dog won't even heed his commands:

It's well known that Jerry Seinfeld, host of the web video series "Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee," has a particular fondness for Porsches. In fact, he owns so many that he needs to sell some to make room in his rather capacious garage for more. The auction firm Gooding & Co. will sell off 16 of the Porsches at an event near Jacksonville, Florida, next month.


This is one of the newer ones. Five of these specially equipped cars were made to commemorate Brumos Racing winning the Grand Am Championship in 2011. Each of the cars was equipped to match the Porsche cars that Brumos raced that season. Seinfeld purchased his directly from Brumos. He drove the car for little more than an hour during a private track day at Willow Springs Raceway near Los Angeles.


This is sad. I am starting a Gofundme page to help Seinfeld retain his classic cars and expand his storage facilities. The goal is to raise $4 million dollars so that we can build warehouse space that is climate controlled in or near the Connecticut border. So far, the plans are calling for a two story drive in parking garage that can be expanded to store at least 42 cars or small boats.

In lieu of help, please pay attention to whatever he's doing from now on. Your indifference did this. You can't tell the difference between Jerry and Jeb Bush anymore, can you?


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Seinfeld is Down and Out


Somehow, Jerry Seinfeld ended up broke and his dog won't even heed his commands:
It's well known that Jerry Seinfeld, host of the web video series "Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee," has a particular fondness for Porsches. In fact, he owns so many that he needs to sell some to make room in his rather capacious garage for more. The auction firm Gooding & Co. will sell off 16 of the Porsches at an event near Jacksonville, Florida, next month.
This is one of the newer ones. Five of these specially equipped cars were made to commemorate Brumos Racing winning the Grand Am Championship in 2011. Each of the cars was equipped to match the Porsche cars that Brumos raced that season. Seinfeld purchased his directly from Brumos. He drove the car for little more than an hour during a private track day at Willow Springs Raceway near Los Angeles.
This is sad. I am starting a Gofundme page to help Seinfeld retain his classic cars and expand his storage facilities. The goal is to raise $4 million dollars so that we can build warehouse space that is climate controlled in or near the Connecticut border. So far, the plans are calling for a two story drive in parking garage that can be expanded to store at least 42 cars or small boats.

In lieu of help, please pay attention to whatever he's doing from now on. Your indifference did this. You can't tell the difference between Jerry and Jeb Bush anymore, can you?




They Kicked Him in the Balls




This man is remarkably upright after being kicked in the family jewels


I hate to be crude, but how do you top this?

Some of Jeb Bush’s most steadfast allies think Saturday might be the end.


Donors, who poured millions into his campaign and super PAC, have stopped giving – one refusing a direct request to raise $1 million this week. Bush himself is hitting the phones, pleading for patience with his most influential supporters. And even some of his confidants are suddenly dejected after a dispiriting week capped off by South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley rejecting Bush in favor of Marco Rubio.



“What a kick in the balls,” said one of Bush’s closest supporters and one of the more than a dozen major Bush donors interviewed for this story.


The Bush team had been banking on a strong week, believing their candidate’s first solid debate performance last weekend would move the numbers in South Carolina. They thought bringing in George W. Bush on Monday night would generate more enthusiasm and positive earned media than it did. They held out hope that the former president could convince Haley, who’d hedged on backing Rubio after his slip in New Hampshire, to support a fellow governor.

 This is not the end of Jeb Bush, not by a long shot. This just means he has to figure out how to tap a different donor network the next time around. It might be a bit leaner next time. I don't think he can count on being able to blow through $115 million dollars the next time he decides he maybe wants to get kicked in the balls.





I wonder if there's a magic number for Bush. Once his campaign funds get down to five or ten million dollars, does he fold up his tent and walk away with that money? How many of his overpriced minions are going to be stiffed on their bonuses and paychecks? Will this be like the McCain campaign, where they're left with boxes of phones full of sensitive E-mails at the end of the road that can provide lots of embarrassing details?





That would be cool.




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They Kicked Him in the Balls

This man is remarkably upright after being kicked in the family jewels

I hate to be crude, but how do you top this?
Some of Jeb Bush’s most steadfast allies think Saturday might be the end.
Donors, who poured millions into his campaign and super PAC, have stopped giving – one refusing a direct request to raise $1 million this week. Bush himself is hitting the phones, pleading for patience with his most influential supporters. And even some of his confidants are suddenly dejected after a dispiriting week capped off by South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley rejecting Bush in favor of Marco Rubio.
“What a kick in the balls,” said one of Bush’s closest supporters and one of the more than a dozen major Bush donors interviewed for this story.
The Bush team had been banking on a strong week, believing their candidate’s first solid debate performance last weekend would move the numbers in South Carolina. They thought bringing in George W. Bush on Monday night would generate more enthusiasm and positive earned media than it did. They held out hope that the former president could convince Haley, who’d hedged on backing Rubio after his slip in New Hampshire, to support a fellow governor.
 This is not the end of Jeb Bush, not by a long shot. This just means he has to figure out how to tap a different donor network the next time around. It might be a bit leaner next time. I don't think he can count on being able to blow through $115 million dollars the next time he decides he maybe wants to get kicked in the balls.

I wonder if there's a magic number for Bush. Once his campaign funds get down to five or ten million dollars, does he fold up his tent and walk away with that money? How many of his overpriced minions are going to be stiffed on their bonuses and paychecks? Will this be like the McCain campaign, where they're left with boxes of phones full of sensitive E-mails at the end of the road that can provide lots of embarrassing details?

That would be cool.





Thursday, February 18, 2016

Going to War Against the Pope




It's a Henry VIII kind of a deal:

When Pope Francis announced he would be holding a large Mass on the U.S.-Mexican border as part of his apostolic journey to the region, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump accused the holy man of playing politics and not fully understanding “the danger of the open border we have with Mexico.”

“I think Mexico got him to do it,” Trump said, “because Mexico wants to keep the border just the way it is—because they’re making a fortune and we’re losing.”

Well, Trump may have been right—at least about the Pope’s political intentions. During the flight back from Mexico on Wednesday night, Francis dabbled in the American presidential contest when he told reporters that Trump’s promised immigration policy makes him “un-Christian.”


There's an electoral reason to go to war against the Pope. For one, he's not popular with American conservatives. Two, liberals like this Pope. And, three, Trump erodes the fundamentalist base attracted to Ted Cruz by exploiting the underlying bias that Protestants with a lot of money have against Catholicism.





This has been the 800th piece about how this "dooms" Trump, and it does not mean what it thinks it means. Trump is not doomed. Trump is doom itself. Duh.




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Going to War Against the Pope


It's a Henry VIII kind of a deal:
When Pope Francis announced he would be holding a large Mass on the U.S.-Mexican border as part of his apostolic journey to the region, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump accused the holy man of playing politics and not fully understanding “the danger of the open border we have with Mexico.”

“I think Mexico got him to do it,” Trump said, “because Mexico wants to keep the border just the way it is—because they’re making a fortune and we’re losing.”

Well, Trump may have been right—at least about the Pope’s political intentions. During the flight back from Mexico on Wednesday night, Francis dabbled in the American presidential contest when he told reporters that Trump’s promised immigration policy makes him “un-Christian.”
There's an electoral reason to go to war against the Pope. For one, he's not popular with American conservatives. Two, liberals like this Pope. And, three, Trump erodes the fundamentalist base attracted to Ted Cruz by exploiting the underlying bias that Protestants with a lot of money have against Catholicism.

This has been the 800th piece about how this "dooms" Trump, and it does not mean what it thinks it means. Trump is not doomed. Trump is doom itself. Duh.





Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Republicans in Disarray




I think we can dispense with the notion that Mitch McConnell has any control over the United States Senate:

A crack opened Tuesday in Republican opposition to an Obama appointee filling the Supreme Court vacancy left by recently departed Justice Antonin Scalia. "I would wait until the nominee is made before I would make any decision," Sen. Chuck Grassley, who chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee, told Iowa reporters on Tuesday. While he agrees with Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's insistence that the next president should appoint the Scalia replacement, Grassley admitted he prefers to take this "a step at a time." On whether such openness to an Obama nomination could hurt his own re-election chances, the senator said, "I think I have a responsibility to perform and I can't worry about the election. I've got to do my job as a senator, whatever it is."


Let's focus on one key admission here--Grassley knows he has to "do my job as a senator, whatever that is." If McConnell had control of the Senate, not only would Marco Rubio show up once in a while but Grassley wouldn't be saying anything right now. If McConnell had any command of his caucus, he would be able to delight himself this week while reading stories about his firm leadership and how senators x, y, and z all back him up.





Instead, we see the knife formed from an ear of corn in the shape of Grassley's tacit admission that nobody has a leg to stand on. It's an election year. The president has about 11 months left in office. Of course the party in control gets to name the next Supreme Court Justice. Antonin Scalia didn't have the decency to live until January 20th. How is that the fault of anyone who wants to see a liberal on the court?





Do you really think the Democrats would be allowed any such thing? No. And what Grassley realizes is that we live in a democracy. If we're going to start a new precedent, the one where we ignore the fact that there's a sitting president who was re-elected with a large majority and tell him he can't name justices to the Supreme Court isn't going to fly.


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UPDATE: Senator McConnell can't even keep first term Senator Thom Tillis of North Carolina in line. How is anyone supposed to believe that he has control of the Senate when he can't even keep a junior senator like Tillis in line? And Tillis actually used the term "obstructionists." Unbelievable.



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