The Widdershins

Courtesy of Pittsburgh Magazine

As DYB said on Saturday, everything is terrible. But if we elect the right people in November, we may finally get some action on issues the U.S. has recently been lagging behind on – even when Democrats were entirely in charge from 2008-2010.

My complaints as a liberal with regard to elected Democrats in those days:

  1. Our actions on climate change were not aggressive enough – even the Paris Accords were weak sauce given the state of emergency.
  2. We failed to address economic and social justice with the urgency they required. Indeed, under Obama, economic inequality soared, and deportation and cruelty towards immigrants grew. (As we know, the main differences between Hillary and Obama were domestic issues, not foreign policy issues.)

The problem I always had with Obama was that he did not differentiate, policy-wise, between Republicans and Democrats. His messaging was great for campaigning, but not for governing. “We’re all one” doesn’t win the liberal arguments that government solutions are required for complex problems  like the environment; taxation to solve those problems can be reasonably accomplished without pain to the middle and lower classes; and that economic justice and social justice are intertwined.

There are many things we can do to drive these three liberal messages home. The coronavirus, as horrific as it is, may provide an opportunity to do so.

“A crisis like this brings to people’s minds that maybe the risk we’ve been talking about with climate change is not so far fetched; that actually all these extreme weather episodes of the last five years add up to something,” he says. “So we may see an expectation that government should respond accordingly.”

That, says Barbara Buchner, is one reason why efforts at rebuilding in the wake of the pandemic must take into account longer-term strategies, and incorporate sustainability at their core.

“Obviously the first priority here must be to protect the public health,” Buchner says. But there is no greater second priority than using this crisis to really accelerate the low-carbon transition that is already ongoing, because climate change is threatening our very civilization.”

Buchner believes that any economic stimulus plan ought to be geared not only to jump-start the global economy but to invest further in post-hydrocarbon infrastructure.

“This in turn will create new economic opportunities and also address a set of challenges—including making businesses more sustainable,” she says. “I think ultimately the real question is: do we lock ourselves into the use of fossil fuels in our infrastructure choices today, or do we instead use this crisis as a moment to accelerate the transition that is already on its way?”

In my heart, I truly do understand where some people who vote for Bernie Sanders are coming from – but it’s what they choose to do about it that makes me crazy. Why would they waste their passion on a destructive, do-nothing old crank like Bernie? And why don’t they understand that, as imperfect as the Democrats are, they get us further than Republicans, who hurtle us into fascism and war, and tank the economy,!!!?!?!?!?!

Whatever happens, one thing is clear: we must, MUST vote blue all the way down the ballot in November. A true draining of the swamp is needed before any forward progress can be made.

Open thread, bien sur. (Oldie but goodie below…)

Welcome to the weekend Widdershins!

What a mess everything is. I mean…everything is terrible. And our Orange Leader is, well, you know. So – let’s try to lift each other’s spirits up a bit! Post something – a song, a clip from a movie, a poem, whatever – that makes you smile!

This is an open thread.


Bernie Sanders has always been clear about his contempt for the Democratic Party and his desire to destroy it to make way for his socialist Revolution. (How some people still see him as benign is truly beyond my capacity to understand.) As Douglas Perry wrote in May of 2016:

So Sanders is not continuing his presidential campaign at this late date because he really believes he can overcome former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s delegate lead and nab the nomination at July’s Democratic National Convention. He’s doing it because, as he’s said in countless speeches over the past year, he’s trying to gin up a “political revolution.” He decries the Democratic Party’s move to the center (led by Bill Clinton in the 1990s), its embrace of the internet economy and its entrepreneurs over traditional Democratic constituencies such as labor unions.


…Sanders and his dedicated supporters will be fighting on the convention floor in July, for a party platform that meets their ideals — and simply for the catharsis of fighting one last time with the cameras trained on them. They might change the party in the process — and the outcome of the general election, too.

Unfortunately, Perry was prescient at a time when most pundits were massively underestimating the disaster that a Trump Presidency would bring. But prominent Bernie supporters like Susan Sarandon convinced themselves that “burn it down” was an acceptable answer as long as they got their privileged itches scratched.

Sarandon appeared on Chris Hayes’s MSNBC show Tuesday night, where she made her case for Sanders, citing his record on free trade, prisons, genetically modified foods, and more. Hayes pointed out that elections are choices, and asked whether she would vote for Clinton in a general election matchup against Donald Trump.

“I think Bernie would probably encourage people [to vote Clinton], because he doesn’t have a lot of ego in this,” she said. “But I think a lot of people are, ‘Sorry, I just can’t bring myself to do that.’” As for herself, “I don’t know. I’m going to see what happens.”

“Really?” an incredulous Hayes asked.

“Some people feel Donald Trump will bring the revolution immediately,” she replied.

Well, it took three years and the Covid-19 virus for people to start talking about shoring up the social safety. So in a sense, Susan Sarandon and her fellow travelers were right.

But there was one thing they forgot: if you don’t vote for Democrats, you don’t get the social safety net. We are likely to see some temporary relief for those impacted by the virus, but I doubt meaningful change will happen. Why? Because Trump is President and Mitch McConnell is in charge of the Senate.

I guess they didn’t think this through very well, now, did they?

Open thread, etc.

Stay 6 feet apart

Good weekend Widdershins

So, here we are with a leaderless, rudderless, federal government that consists of a man who is the purported President*, who just reels off untruths and lies at a daily “briefing”, and then attacks a reporter for giving him a softball question.  I believe I agree with Rachel.  Don’t broadcast this bullshit live.  Tape those and show later if you must show them.

Currently we have seventy million Americans who have been told to stay home.  Illinois was the latest to do so but it surely won’t be the last one.  I expect Louisiana’s governor to do the same soon since we have one of the highest rates of infection on a per capita basis.

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Because why not a saxophone group called Nuclear Whales?


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Take the discussion wherever you wish to go with it.

Hi Widdershins!

I see our last post is getting long and is probably taking time to load, so I’m starting a new place-holder for continued, uninterrupted chatting.

Bernie got his ass kicked again; Biden won Florida and Illinois by huge margins. Ironically Bernie’s awful campaign first tried to suppress the vote by telling people that if they vote they will get Coronavirus and die. And now that they lost BIGLY, they argue that low turnout makes the results not acceptable. They are the biggest hypocrites currently alive.

How is everybody doing? Are you staying in the house? Working remotely? Avoiding crowds? NYC is a ghost town after all restaurants were closed last night. (Only delivery and take-out are allowed.) Gyms are closed, even electronic stores are closed. There are rumors that they will shut down the subways too… Only food stores and pharmacies are open now…

That old Chinese curse: “May you live in interesting times.” Well, how much more interesting can the times get?

This is an open thread.

Good Weekend Widdershins

So is it a good weekend so far?  For me, dunno yet.  I’m doing my best to ignore the pandemic at least for the weekend.  I’ve put the tv on one of the music channels tuned to “light classical”.  I just don’t want to hear anything more about Covid 19 or the blatherings of El Caudillo del Mar-a-Lago nor his butt-kissing Surgeon General.  So let’s just enjoy some toe-tapping St. Paddy’s Day or other Irish songs.

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Today, my friends, let’s take a moment to acknowledge that the Bernie Sanders “revolution” has died, not with a bang, but with a whimper.

The polls tell the story: Joe Biden is trouncing Bernie in almost every state. It’s 2016 redux, but now, people have gotten wise to Bernie and are abandoning him much earlier on. And of course, there are a lot fewer caucuses; in 2016, some people saw Bernie running the table in the Midwest and thought, well hey, maybe he could get some of those WWC voters to switch back to Democrats. But no, it turned out that Bernie’s bullying, toxic supporters are just really great at winning caucuses. Nonetheless, even with the illusion of Midwestern love in 2016, Hillary beat him by 4 million votes.

It will be even worse this year, according to

March 10th:

The rest of March:

The data is clear: there is absolutely no path to the nomination for Bernie, and humiliatingly, very little relief ahead from the massive walloping that Biden is going to deliver.

Requiescat in pace, oh fake Revolution. You will most assuredly NOT be missed.

Oh and PS, Trump may have Coronavirus. Dare we hope Karma would be this kind?


Keep Up

Atrocities Documented:

What the F*ck Just Happened?!

Victories Won:

Your Victories Against Drumpf!


WHAT:  Joe Biden CNN Town Hall on coronavirus pandemic.

When:  Friday March 27th 8 pm Eastern

Where: CNN

Host/moderator: Anderson Cooper


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