Final Arguments

Sweet Jesus. Four years ago, I neve thought that I would live to see this day. This is what I like to call the afterbirth of the presidential campaign, especially in 2020. There are already 93 million votes in the can, in an almost unbelievably divided populace, with few voters left to sway.. And yet tomorrow, both […]

Trump’s Off Ramp

Jake: You lied to me   Elwood: It wasn’t lies, it was just bullshit   The Blues Brothers First, let ne say this. I have absolutely no reason to doubt that Hope Hicks has contracted the coronavirus. The fact that a reporter had to break it, instead of the White House self disclosing it tells you all […]

Incumbency Is A Jewel. Until…

I’m not going to go into great detail, since we’ve talked about it before, but you know my feelings on incumbency. If you’re a layabout that likes to talk about himself all the time, then politics is the game for you. If you can convince enough people in your district or state that you actually give a shit about them, you’re golden. That’s because the retention rate in congress is about 94.2%. The advantages to incumbency are obvious. Name and face recognition. People voted for you the first time, and your job gives you the chance to say and do things that make voters feel like you’re working hard for them. You already have an up and functioning campaign structure and donor base. And if you’re an incumbent, you also have a nice little Rolodex full of special interest contributors. Little wonder it’s so hard to lose. But there are also a couple of risks in being an incumbent, and interestingly enough, they can be the same thing that constitutes a strength. To become an incumbent, the candidate crafts an image he feels will appeal to voters. And then he crafts his record and personality to match that image, in order to get reelected. Which means that his name and record recognition in the district or state is near universal. If an incumbent suddenly falls out of favor, there is little he can do to change or restore his image. That’s what is killing GOP Senate incumbents in 2020. They spent years carefully crafting their images and records, to remain comfortable with their voters. And then in 2016, along came Donald Trump, the one man wrecking crew. Out of their terror of alienating Trump’s vengeful base, these incumbents prostituted their names, their records, and their images in steadfastly refusing to stand up to Trump. And in doing so, they became Trump to their voters. Here’s a perfect example. A week or so ago, MJ Hegar won the Democratic primary in Texas to oppose John Cornyn for his Senate seat. A poll just afterwards showed Cornyn with an 8 point lead over Hegar, which greatly heartened the campaign, as well it should. Here’s why. A recent popularity poll showed Cornyn well under water with voters in Texas. This is the worst place to be, simply because he is so well knows, and voters opinions of him are so baked in. In the same poll, more than 50% said that they didn’t know enough about Hegar to make an informed opinion. In politics, this is known as room for growth. It may be next to impossible for Cornyn to change minds, but Hegar has every opportunity, with well crafted messaging and effective campaigning, to swing that 50%+ over to her side. This same effect is being felt up and down the lineup for the GOP. With Perdue in Georgia, Graham in south Carolina, Tillis in North Carolina, Collins in Maine, and even Ernst in Iowa. In each case, the incumbent is badly under water in popularity, and the fresh faced challengers have tons of room to grow, because they can make up minds instead of having to try to change them. There are actually two states where this really doesn’t play in, but likely won’t matter. In Colorado, Corey Gardner has been a dead man walking since before the primaries. John Hickenlooper was still running for […]

Is There No TOO Low For The GOP?

Being a lifelong political junkie, I’m no stranger to a politician making some high falutin’ moral statement, and then almost immediately thereafter getting caught doing what he had just ranted and raved against. And when they get caught, rather than getting all red faced and apologizing, they bullshit it away, and keep right on being hypocritical douches on the subject. The example that immediately comes to mind is GOP congressional rockhead Louis DeJarlais. A bombastic right to lifer, he wanted doctors locked up for life for daring to perform an abortion, and their patients could rot in the cell next to them. That was before DeJarlais, a doctor, was exposed for having an affair with a patient, getting said patient pregnant, and then pressuring her to get an abortion, even driving her out of state to try to hide it. His basic response was to almost completely ignore the scandal, run for reelection, and unbelievably enough win, while still running on the identical pro life platform he had just defiled. But in the world of Trump and the McConnell GOP, I keep asking myself, shouldn’t there be some point, at which either a politician or even a party crosses a line that is so low, that the only possible response is abject shame?Not just for obscuring their own personal prejudices and quirks, but when they sink to the level that they show nothing but disdain and even disgust for the very people who voted them into power? Apparently now. I was heartbroken last month when I learned that the demographic with the fastest rising coronavirus explosion per 100,000 people was the Navajo nation. Native nations and indigenous tribes without the cushion of a casino on tribal lands tend to have the deck stacked against them to start with. After all, the US government wasn’t going to cede land to them that was good for much of anything else. But it was still tragic to learn that the situation had deteriorated to the point that Doctors Without Borders had sent a team into temporary housing to help deal with the crisis. That being said, those with a cold enough heart could at least seek to exonerate the US government for the neglect, simply by stating that after all, just like any other tribe, the Navajo are a sovereign nation, with their own laws. Of course, you will come off as a completely heartless prick for even suggesting such a thing, but the argument can be made. Bit not now. Not anymore. Thanks to their Fuck it, let’s see what happens attitude towards reopening their never completely shuttered state, Florida is seeing massive spikes in their reported cases, hospitalizations, and deaths. Even worse, the GOP DeSantis administration is actively doing everything in their power to make things worse, while putting on a cheery public face. For instance, DeSantis fired the state official who was responsible for putting out accurate information on the case numbers. He fired her for putting out accurate information on the case numbers! Rather than go away, the woman has continued to use her sources and access to gain legitimate numbers, and started a public website where Floridians of a mind can get accurate information on how their government is trying to kill them. There is at least one community in Florida that is feeling terribly underserved by their own state government. […]

The Undisputed King Of Cynicism

There’s an old saying that I’ve always been fond of. In its original iteration it spoke rather jokingly about a particular persons affinity for good luck. The phrase goes Bob is so lucky he could fall into a shit house and come out with a box lunch! You could also substitute Tiffany cuff links or a diamond necklace as the lucky trinkets. But in the current political environment, I’ve found a new respect, and a brand new use for that old phrase. There’s no doubt about it, Donald Trump is a shit house. Every time he opens his mouth, a toxic stream of shit erupts, which according to Trump supporters, is a part of his quirky charm. But as in the old saying, if you force yourself to pay attention, every once in a while you’ll see that box lunch or those Tiffany cuff links floating by. It happened again on Sunday. Trump was interviewed by two FUX News stooges, in comfortable surroundings. It went about as you’d expect, except that at one point, the female member of this Frick and Frack combo interrupted Trump to call him out. Trump was bellowing on about an expected death toll of 80,000 when she interrupted him to say, But isn’t that a direct contradiction Mr President? You we’re originally projecting 40,000 and now you’re talking about 80,000. What happened?  At which point Trump’s oral Fleet enema kicked in; That’s right, I did say 40,000 and now it’s going up, and it’s terrible, but it’s up to 80,000 now, which is terrible, and it could go higher. But even if it does go higher, that would still be at the low end of the range they predicted if we had just shut the whole country down. It’s hard to know exactly where to start with a vein of pure cynicism this rich. I mean, we’re talking about the King Solomon’s Mine of bullshit here. For instance, Trump’s response to being called out on his bait-and-switch on the numbers was appallingly flippant in its cynicism. Basically it amounts to That was then, and this is now, so go sue me. But it’s the second part of his statement where the cynicism hits truly epic proportions. Trump uses the higher numbers, in a twisted way, to justify his not taking federal action to shut down the country and issue emergency stay-at-home orders. His excuse is that even if 135,000 people die, that would still be in the lower end margin of what the death toll was projected to be even if he had shut down the country. This is not only cynicism of the highest order, it is incredibly callous as well. And worst of all, it’s blatantly false on two different counts! First count. There was a study released recently that stated that if the federal government had taken control, issued and enforced nationwide stay-at-home orders, then the fatality count would have plateaued at 40,000-45,000 people. That would have not only saved 30,000 American souls minimum, it would also have spared front line responders a major portion of the horrors they have endured, as well as mitigating the shortages in person protection equipment and ventilators. Also, the University of Washington model that Trump is referencing makes it crystal clear in their introduction that one of the major reasons that they are revising the death toll estimates […]

You Have A Congresscritter. USE THEM!

Hola my padawan learners! I’m going to impart a brief horror story here. This horror story is going to sound familiar to a whole lot of you good and gentle readers, if not the precise situation itself, then the similarities to a situation you might personally be going through right now. And at the end is a possible fix for your conundrum. Y’all know that Teri is on furlough. She filed her claim with unemployment online on March 31st. Six days later, she got an envelope in the mail with her BofA debit card from the unemployment office, for her use once she started receiving payments. The next week she filed her first weekly claim online. Wow! Think of it, a government program that actually works as designed, what a concept! Except not. The last thing we heard from unemployment was getting that debit card. It is now three pay cycles later, and not a penny has been deposited in the account. Not only that, but we have received no communication regarding any issues with her account. So much for efficient governmental processing. Last Friday we started calling then directly to the unemployment office to try to resolve the situation. Since Friday, we have logged a combined 8000 attempts to talk to someone, without even being able to get into a hold queue for a representative. It’s always either a “all circuits busy” signal, or a “your call cannot be completed at this time.” Kind of hard to correct a problem without making contact. Today, out of desperation, I called the district office for my representative, Dina Titus. The staffer who answered the phone was polite, energetic, and helpful. She advised me that as of last week, their offices had begun actively assisting constituents with there unemployment issues. Teri gave her the necessary information, and she assured us that they would call us back with either a resolution, or more information. It was that simple. The title of this article says it all. With the disruption of the pandemic, people are running into roadblocks for all kinds of things. And because of the crushing influx of contacts due to the conditions, both state and federal response systems are being overwhelmed. But you know who’s not being overwhelmed right now? Your duly elected member of congress. At its base, this is exactly what your MOC is there for. You elected these ballot mice to look after your interests, and now you need help. And you’ll get action too. This isn’t an “opinion” call, where you’re just making your voice heard to your representative, this is a call for action. And what is a United States Representative if not a customer service agent for their constituents? People have friends, neighbors, family and colleagues. And if they don’t get a respectful response from their congressional office when they have a legitimate problem, their representative may be updating their resume come next November. That’s my advice to you all. Lots of people have lots of problems right now, brought on by the coronavirus, and most likely they will be state based problems. But you have a US House member, and they can force action at the state level if you just turn the loose! Try solving the problem through the normal, accepted channels, but if you end up banging your head against […]

For The GOP, Trump Just Blew Up EVERYTHING!

Everything you know is wrong. Up is down, left is right, and short is long   Weird Al Yankovic Right now, if there is one person in all of Washington DC who is huddled in a corner, shaking like a leaf, jumping at every noise, and pissing his pants every five seconds, it’s Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. Because all he can do is to look at fellow Republican Brian Kemp, and mutter There but for the grace of God do I. Republican Georgia Governor Brian Kemp is a fully fledged, card carrying Trombie Scout. He proudly wears his Trump Toady merit badge, and wears his purple Royal Ass Kisser sash to bed every night. He has consistently championed every hare brained Trump scheme, and recently went to war with the Mayor of Atlanta over overriding her objections, and in compliance with His Lowness’ wishes. And a couple of hours ago, Trump repaid Kemp’s abject loyalty by hitting him over the head with a 2X4. As I wrote earlier today, Georgia is stirring national controversy because Kemp wants to open the throttle while the rate of new coronavirus cases in the state is still rising. When asked by a reporter about the issue earlier today, Trump had this to say;  So do I agree with him? No. But I respect him and I’ll let him make his decision. Would I do that? No. I want to protect people’s lives. But I’m going to let him to make his decision. But I told him I totally disagree.” Oh, sweet Jesus. Here Kemp is, trying to play ball with Trump, and Trump whacks him on the head with the bat. Trump not only disagrees with Kemp’s decision, but he cavalierly throws in that nugget about I want to protect people, like Kemp could give a shit less about his own constituents. Sorry Doofus Grande, I don’t think your “respect” was what Kemp was looking for, rather your support and approval. This is the true Doomsday scenario for the GOP. God knows that every last man jackin’ one of them tied their lead lines to Trump’s bumper a long time ago. But how do they follow him when even he doesn’t seem to know where the hell he’s going? What next? Does he call the governor of South Dakota a nasty woman for not closing down the meat packing plants, and blowing a chunk of state change testing Trump’s favorite snake oil cure? Does he tell Ron DeSantis to go take a swim in the ocean he just opened up, and hopefully a shark will swim along and finish him off? How do they back Trump’s play, when Trump himself has no coherent play? And nowhere in the entire GOP is there anyone more at risk than Yertl the Turtle. By necessity Trump’s main legislative henchman in the Senate, McConnell has cheer leaded, as well as rammed through with brute force, almost every boneheaded plan that Brutus Cheesecake has pulled out of his toolkit. Which means that he’s open and exposed  Earlier today, in order to gin up Trump’s EEG flat line base, McConnell proposed that failing states declare bankruptcy rather than have the federal government bail them out. One would think that Glorious Bleater would be well pleased. Except that it has been reported that in this last round of negotiations, Trump agreed with bipartisan leaders that […]

Super Sunday!

Because if it’s Sunday, it’s Meet The Press I was 12 years old a half a century ago, the last time my Kansas City Chiefs played in a Super Bowl, so you know where I’m going to be at 3:30 PST tomorrow. But I’m going to be just as glued to the set tomorrow morning for the Sunday morning blatherfests, because as Teri likes to say, Dis gwan be sum fun, choo bet! See, the GOP’s shit is all fucked up, and it’s fucked up for every right reason that I can think of. It’s fucked up because the Democratic House vase managers did their job. They put on an airtight case over three days painting a masterpiece of evidence, testimony, logic, and timelines that chained Trump to the crime the way that you chain a pit bull out in the back yard so he can’t get at the kids. And the Republican defense knew it too. Why do you think that they kept sending Patrick Philbin out there to answer every question. None of them wanted their names, voices, and faces tied to this steaming pile of shit. The old rule is if the law is against you, argue the facts. If the facts are against you, argue the law. And if the law and the facts are against you, yell and pound the table. But the Republican lawyers couldn’t argue at all, because they had another rule cast upon them by Emperor Numbus Nuttus. Thou shalt not doubt! No, it was a perfect call, under perfect circumstances, by a perfect President, and we’re in a perfect world. Only Alan Dirtyshitz dared to try that on the floor, and he came off looking like a perfect fucking idiot. We’ve all known all along that the GOP Senates defense, if not His Lowness, was that maybe it wasn’t a perfect call, but the result didn’t reach the level of a high crime or misdemeanor. And we all kept waiting for somebody to make that argument, but it never came. And so it fell to poor old Lamar Alexander, addled, fed up, and on his way out the door to finally say what needed to be said, although maybe a wee more succinctly than the GOP might have hoped, I don’t need to see or hear anymore, cuz it’s obvious. We Republicans have another Nixon on our hands, just another cheap crook! But don’t look to me to do anything about it, I ain’t that stupid! See, this is a problem for the Republican Senate. It was bad enough when they knew that everybody on the planet who isn’t named Trump knows that he’s guilty. But up to a certain point they could plod along, blaming the process, and avoiding the 600 lb orangutan in the room. But once Alexander came right out and said it, that time was over. After all, if everybody already knew it, and Alexander said it, they’d look pretty fucking stupid saying that Alexander was full of shit, even for Republican Senators. We’ve already seen the first fallout. Li’l Marco from Florida, remember him? Yeah, the one who drinks water like your two year old with his Tommee Tippee cup. He said something along the lines that even if Trump did it, that didn’t necessarily mean that he should be removed from office. No, actually shit-for-brains, […]

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