The Widdershins

It’s Monday…

Posted on: March 21, 2016

Good afternoon Widdershins.

First things, first.  Where is everyone?  First, MB is traveling – she will be back next week.  Chat has jumped shipped and is sailing the western Caribbean with Captain Jack Sparrow and a band of salty tars.  Finally, Fredster is in the throes of the spring pollen pox.  He reports the air is so thick with pollen he has to carry a machete and breather to go outdoors.

Unfortunately, that leaves you with me.  There are a few things worthy of our notice that you might have missed this fine Monday.

Hillary Doesn’t Need the Men FolkHillary Clinton

Don’t get me wrong, Hillary would gladly take the votes of the menz, but she doesn’t have to have them.  I’m sure you’ve heard the “concern troll pundits” who for lack of a more insightful comment point toward the lagging support by those of the species with dangly things.

That ain’t news and neither is it novel:

The fading of white men as a Democratic bloc is hardly new: The last nominee to carry them was Lyndon Johnson in 1964, and many blue-collar “Reagan Democrats” now steadily vote Republican.

One of these concern troll pundits is Bill Richardson.  You remember him – the guy plucked from obscurity by President Clinton who repaid the Clintons by endorsing Obama in 2008 and subsequently trotted around as a show pony during that cycle.

Here’s the truth about white men and their voting.

Let’s be more specific. Clinton will have the support of tens of millions of white men. But she doesn’t need to do any better among them than any Democrat has, and even if she does worse, she’ll probably be completely fine.

That’s because whites are declining as a proportion of the electorate as the country grows more diverse with each passing year. In 1992, just 24 years ago, whites made up 87 percent of the voters, according to exit polls. By 2012 the figure had declined to 72 percent. Since women vote at slightly higher rates than men, white men made up around 35 percent of the voters.

Those numbers will be lower this year, which means that even if nothing changes in how non-whites vote, Republicans will need to keep increasing their margins among whites to even stay where they are overall — in other words, to keep losing by the same amount.

So the next time you hear a concern troll, just change the channel.


Turnout ain’t no big thing

Speaking of concern trolls, how many times have you heard some giddy Republican say, “Republican turnout is up, Democratic turnout is down – Hillary is in trouble.”

The sages over at 538 have taken a look at this.  Here’s what they say:

But Democrats shouldn’t worry. Republicans shouldn’t celebrate. As others have pointed out, voter turnout is an indication of the competitiveness of a primary contest, not of what will happen in the general election. The GOP presidential primary is more competitive than the Democratic race.

Indeed, history suggests that there is no relationship between primary turnout and the general election outcome.

Check out the article, it is interesting if you are eaten-up with “the wonk” like I am.


What Bernistan would look likeBernie

I grow weary when I hear talk of Bernistan.  Bernie’s America would look something like a cross between Denmark and Sweden.  Both are lovely countries.  Both have lovely citizens.  I have known many Danes and Swedes in my years and they are, to a person, lovely people, but there is a difference.

Both countries are homogenous.  People are similar, needs are similar, and culturally, there is little randomness.  In other words, both countries are much like Comrade Sanders’ Vermont.

Government-provided health insurance. Free college tuition. A $15 minimum wage. Stronger unions. High gas taxes. Guaranteed parental leave. It sounds as though Bernie Sanders wants to turn America into Denmark or Sweden.

“And what’s wrong with that?” the Democratic presidential candidate replied when ABC’s George Stephanopoulos asked that question.

The Wonkblog offers up a great synopsis of the disruption and uncertainty Bernie’s proposal would bring.  In short:

According to economists, however, the question is not whether it is theoretically possible for Americans to adopt Scandinavian policies and still be prosperous. The issue is whether Americans would be willing to accept the trade-offs that go along with such a system — higher taxes and unemployment rates, open trade, slower growth, more income redistribution — and whether Sanders has overestimated the benefits and underestimated the costs of adopting it.

“There’s nothing wrong with it other than that Americans are not Danes,” said Princeton’s Alan Blinder, a top economic adviser to President Bill Clinton.

Feel free to take the conversation in any direction you might want.


96 Responses to "It’s Monday…"

I guess those numbers (dwindling white male) explain Trumps popularity.

I read this last night and it kinda scared me. Why would the House get to choose the prez if Hillary wins the most electorals?

@1, bingo, if he wins all the white vote it only guarantees something short of 200 electoral votes.

@2, a person must win 270 electoral votes. If no one wins that number, it goes to the House of Representatives.

That won’t happen. Before anyone votes, Hillary will have something like 240 electoral votes if people vote in line with their previous voting patterns.

Annie@2: There is a lot of hyperbole in that piece like this:

And Ohio happens to be an open-carry state. Guns are allowed in public places. If gun-toting Trump and Cruz delegates are inside the hall, people could get killed.

Completely ridiculous and besides which the G.O.P. has already stated people will not be allowed to carry guns into the convention. I mean c’mon: didn’t that guy see The Manchurian Candidate? Not gonna happen.

If they have a fracas in Cleveland and Trump goes third party or the establishment Repubs do, they may not be able to make it on the ballot in time and further, the process of write-in candidates differs from state to state. The only thing that might do is just guarantee a Clinton win.

He reports the air is so thick with pollen he has to carry a machete and breather to go outdoors.

Really, its just about that bad. I went out last night and when I got in the SUV, it took 3 separate times with the windshield washer to get the windshield passably clean enough to see and then the same for the back window on the hatch. Right now there’s no point in even trying to run a vehicle through the car wash; it would be a waste of money.

Everyone is just giddy with excitement about the AIPAC speeches especially Trump’s.

A Rabbi is going to lead a walk out during Trump’s speech and supposedly, 1,000 will walk out.

Given the attitude of the news media about Trump, of all Trump all the time, they will start doing the weather and say, “No word yet from the Trump campaign on whether it will rain tomorrow.”

@7: I saw something where the ADL is going to take some money he donated to them and use it for different purposes.

“These undoubtedly were sincere gifts,” said Jonathan Greenblatt, CEO of ADL. “But in light of the recent campaign, we have decided to redirect the total amount of funds that he contributed to ADL over the years specifically into anti-bias education programs that address exactly the kind of stereotyping and scapegoating that have been injected into the political season.”

The donated funds will go toward expanding ADL’s “No Place for Hate” educational program in 10 regions: New York, Philadelphia, Cleveland, Atlanta, Houston, Denver, San Diego, San Francisco, Arizona and Las Vegas.

Gerrymandering using prison populations – who can’t vote and aren’t even residents.

Did any of you see this article about a kid interviewing for a job at a Popeyes chicken place in Nola and he stopped a robbery? He did get the job.

@9: Amazing, just amazing.

@9, prisons have been used in several states to justify and “round out” districts. It is despicable. Once we get a 5th vote on the Supreme Court, that kind of crap will end.

@10, yes, I saw that in the paper. He got the job!

@12: I really hate the entire idea of the gerrymandering stuff and I don’t care which side does it. It’s really time to take the job of redistricting out of the hands of politicians.

@13: The store mgr or assistant said they had already made up their minds to hire the kid but had not told him so and then the robbery occurred. Now I hope he’s able to learn whatever job he was selected for, and finds a way to advance.

Just a nice story.

@9 & 14, if we get a 5th vote on the Supremes, almost assuredly these gerrymandering cases will swing the other way. Kennedy has voted with the pinheads on the issue. Fat Tony was the “intellectual equivocator,” but he was never allowed to write the opinions. He had to write concurring opinions.

Just watched Trump’s AIPAC speech. Here’s my bet. John Bolton wrote it. It was John Bolton’s craziness from top to bottom. Total pander.

Watching Ted “Evil Monster” Cruz now. He just vowed to start a war if he’s elected. No equivocation at all. The “world enders” now have their official candidate — Ted Cruz’s new slogan — Trust Ted to start WWIII.

CNN is having all 5 candidates on tonight. Don’t know if a townhall or an interview but it’s at 8:00.(now)

Well, it’s Monday and Bernie gets his hour of MSNBC free campaign time on Chris Hayes’ show.

This CNN dealio seems like the Miss America questions with the other candidates sequesters off stage in a sound proof booth.

Kasich is first out of the block.

Kasich up first.

This CNN thing is three hours long. I’ll never make it — Better Call Saul is on tonight.

This AIPAC pandering is the equivalent of, “Some of my best friends are Jewish.” Trump actually mentioned that parade as part of his qualifications. Kasich talked about a monument that was built in Ohio. Cruz was just about starting a war.

If that had been Ben Carson in that Popeye’s “organization” he would have pointed at the woman manager and said -that’s the one you need to beat up.

Anderson just said Obama set the timeline to remove troops from Afghanistan. God, what idiots are “informing” our country.

@25: LOL!!! 😆

@20: And that’s why I don’t watch Hayes and really have just about given up on Maddow. They are as bad for Sanders as #socklessdeadintern and #drunkmika are for Trump.

Meh on the town hall.

GAgal we’ll trust you to keep us updated. 😉

There’s a Bogey movie on TCM and then Saul’s new episode later tonight.

@29 well, I’m already falling down on the job because 5 minutes in I decided I’d rather empty and reload the dishwasher than listen to that. Then I went back and there was Ooze. Click!

Here’s a good read. It’s long – might want to save it for later. Also, might want to shield your eyes from the illustration at the top. (WARNING!)

@30: LOL!

Okay then…how ’bout we decided it’s not worth watching. If anything really good happens I’m sure they will have it on a news segment somewhere.

Trump next. Click again. Then Hillary. Bernie must be after her but he’s on the campaign trail somewhere.

OMG! The Easter Bunny at a Jersey Mall gets into a fistfight.


Trump just said he would have to rethink NATO participation. Neocons all over the country just grabbed their hearts and keeled over.

I love how this was listed:

Election Special: The 5 Final Candidates

So, it’s like The Five Tenors or something?

Trump looks like someone has hit him in both eyes. He looks like a raccoon who’s found the makeup jar.

It looks like he has turned into Mr. Low Energy himself.

Trump actually referred to Hillary as “that woman.”

@38: That will go nicely into an ad for her.

Hillary’s up.

Anderson is interviewing Hillary.

Hillary is just light years ahead of these Repub jokers when it comes to foreign relations.

She’s talking about yelling at Bibi.

Oh yeech…Maddow had Frank Rich on her show. Bleh.

Welp, almost time for Saul.

When asked about campaigning being difficult for her, she said, “Having campaigned for my husband, it is difficult for me to move from “he” and “him” to “I” and “me”. That is an excellent answer.

@45 I think Hillary was referring to having campaigned for a lot of different candidates. I thought she said “she” and “him” to “I” and “me”.

@46, yes, but the thought is, it is difficult for her to have the attention and emphasis placed on her. That is the mid-western Methodist showing through. I think that is attractive to voters because it is so unlike ego driven male candidates.

@5, Prolix, yes, that article seemed full of it. Huffpo is really despicable.

@47, good point.

C’mon Kim. Call ’em!!!! (watching Saul)

How western — they are drinking Moscow Mules.

@49, Annie, how’s my bud Laker?

@51: I’ve never had one of those but I saw they did have the copper cups.

@47 yeah I get that. My view was how Hillary (not Bernie) has campaigned her bee-hind off for both women and men candidates for years. She brought in money, votes and got them elected them to office. She was hinting at party loyalty and how many times she’s been on the stage for others.

No spoilers on Saul, please! (major ones anyway) I plan to binge watch in the future.

@54, yes, it is a great answer she gave because it has all those implications. She should be using that answer all the time.

@55: Okay, got it. Prolix and I will have to share conspiracy theories by email. 😉 BTW, I did see that AMC has renewed it for a third season. YAY!

Just listened to a podcast with Hillary “advisor” Joel Benenson (Obama advisor in ’08) and Glenn Thrush. Too bad it was from a week ago before the Tuesday sweep. The conversation would have been a lot different.

But Benenson hit a few points hard. Thrush asked ” Why does Hillary have a problem with young voters?”. Benenson said “Maybe someone should ask Bernie why he has a problem with people over 30”.

Ahh… the good old days when we said we would never trust people over 30. Those were the days my friend… Good on Bernie supporters. You deserve your primaries. Now just stop smearing Hillary with Right Wing bullshit and we’ll all be happy.

@50 fredster, nah. Keep talking about Saul. I’m positive when I finally watch it, I’ll have no idea what you mean by Kim, call ’em – until much, much later.

@59, I saw Vince Gilligan interviewed and he said they thought it would be easier to write “Saul” than write “Breaking Bad,” but it turned out much more difficult. They said this is a much harder program because all the characters have so much more depth given that they have the “Breaking Bad” back story.

I have to say, they are doing a great job with the characters. GAgal, you won’t be disappointed.

@60: Isn’t it interesting that “everything old is new again” ?

@52, Laker is doing well, Prolix, thanks! He’s busy doing our laundry right now. He is expert at it! He’s on Spring Break this week, but has so many essays this semester that he will be working through it.

What is “Saul?”

@58 I was a kid when that song came out, but I remember it. She was a cutie.

@62, tell Laker I said, “Hey and to have some fun on his spring break.”

“Saul” is “Better Call Saul” it is on AMC and it is the prequel to “Breaking Bad.” Saul is the lawyer on “Breaking Bad” and it is how many of the characters of “Breaking Bad” came to be.

Ahh, thanks Prolix!

Geez, am watching breaking news on CNN about a bombing and attack at the Brussels airport.

Maricopa County shifted from 200+ polling places down to 60 to save money (and undoubtedly suppress voting) and the turnout is enormous for this primary. By some reports, the turnout is larger than a general election.

It will be interesting to see if a defamation suit can be won against Twitter users and also media.

@68, Alternet would seem to think so given their actions in taking their own story down.

A famous basketball player was in the Brussels airport, and was just interviewed. It sounded like he was crying. He was describing fleeing the airport terminal.

@67, I wonder if the polling places that were taken away were in minority areas. They should sue.

@68, that is very interesting. It would be nice if twitter was more civil.

@70, God help us!

@70, that would be the same Heritage Foundation run by that racist, money-grubbing, pin-headed, imbecile Jim DeMint, the Heritage Foundation that abandoned any semblance of its research background to pursue a pure political agenda, the Heritage Foundation that embarked on Heritage Action run by a 30-something flame thrower who suckles Roger Ailes, that Heritage Foundation?

@70, by coincidence, Jennifer Rubin, just happened to write a piece today about Heritage and Trump, particularly, DeMint attending Trump’s little masturbation do-si-do soiree yesterday in D.C. Don’t worry, I very rarely, read what Rubin writes. This is the heart of what she said:

DeMint’s conduct is almost inexplicable. At a time movement conservatives are struggling to prevent the implosion of the movement and make the case that Trump is anathema to the principles of the Republican Party, DeMint’s attendance is at best an instance of horrible judgment, and at worst, the sort of political opportunism that conservative thinkers and longtime activists disdain. It is bad enough that a popular gadfly such as Newt Gingrich would offer aid and comfort to Trump, but the Heritage Foundation? It speaks to the intellectual rot at the heart of a movement that is seen as easy pickings by Trump.

Just kill me now. Paul Broun is running for Congress again. Why, God? WHY?!!

@73: Jennifer Rubin has no credibility as a writer. She’s an opinion writer and sticks to it. I generally ignore anything I see with her by-line.

Y’all: Fredster is just sick, sick, sick. This is beyond just pollen and allergies. I’m going to try to get into the doc’s office tomorrow if possible.

With that said i probably won’t be around too much tonight.

@75, agreed that she has no credibility. Agreed that she is an opinion writer. But, she populates the afternoon edition of the WaPo almost by herself with her drivel. She chews paper and craps essays. To ignore her is to empower her. I don’t believe ignoring the crazies is ever a successful strategy.

Writers like her never care if you don’t read them, but I think we should care what they are feeding the livestock.

@76, Fredster, yes, good idea to go to doctor. Hope you’re feeling better soon!

@77: yeah, but as they say I hate giving her the clicks.

Poor Fredster. Hope your allergies haven’t brought on bronchitis or even worse pneumonia. I’ve had what my doc referred to as “walking pneumonia” and I felt horrible.

AZ polls close in half an hour. Utah a half hour after that. No one is saying much about Idaho except incredibly long lines.

Republican caucus in Utah has online voting ’til 1 am.

@80: GAgal, that’s what’s running through my mind – bronchitis. I’ve had that a couple of times before. I think what they gave me was a z-pak and steroid – just not sure.

I’ll call my doc’s office in the a.m. and see if they can get me in. If not, I’ll go to a doc-in-the-box. I’ve already printed out the forms for them just in case. 😉

Mile long line in Idaho. I had no idea there were so many Democrats in Idaho.

Did I understand right when I heard there are a lot of pissed off Independents in AZ who are trying to vote, but can’t because they don’t belong to the D or R or Green party? Don’t independents in such states know this? Many states don’t allow you to change parties on the day of the election.

AZ with 41% in. Hillary 61/36! Go Hillary!!

Hillary to speak in Seattle tonight. Seattle mayor endorsed her today.

AZ called for Hillary!! She’s still 61/36! Woot! Woot!


Tons of provisional ballots being cast in Utah. They will all have to checked to ensure they are registered voters. That’s gonna take some time. Some were predicting a 2:1 win for Bernie.

CNN discussing running out of ballots, long lines, etc. Woman pundit says it really bothers her this is considered a problem – just look at all the people turning out to vote! Well lady, it might be a slight problem for all those people standing in line who have lives and family they need to get home to. Some of them might even work night shift. But, I guess it’s not much of a problem… to you.

@91, maybe if we get a 5th Supreme Court vote, we can reform voting. Of course, as long as Fat Tony was alive, poor people or minorities voting was an inconvenience.

Wow. In AZ, because of early voting, Marco Rubio is actually beating Kasich 17/10 as of right now.

Cspan showing Hillary’s speech again, except you can’t actually hear her. “audio difficulties” Cspan needs more money allocated to them. They have a lot of shaky cameras, audio and streaming problems.

As a liberal, this kind of Republican drivel is something you only dream about:

Donald Trump threatens to ‘spill the beans’ on Ted Cruz’s wife amid naked photo row

Trump and Cruz are in a Twitter spat after a naked GQ picture of Melania was used in a Cruz super pac ad and then Trump threatened to spill the beans on Cruz’s wife.

Good. That is exactly the behavior that will crush them both. How dumb is Stump for not knowing it was a anti-Trump super-pac? If Cruz has any sense – doubtful- he’ll let it go and let Trump bury himself with this.

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