The Widdershins

Posts Tagged ‘Obama

Good morning Widdershins. Happy Friday.

Times are tough for the MAGA gear crowd. Did you know now you can get MAGA overalls? Who knew? I figure they might also start test marketing MAGA Opioids to take the edge off all this bad news. Of course the only way the Trumpkinites would hear about it is if Fox has to shut down in order to focus on their primary business – pimping sex for old men.

Over the past few days, I’ve been noticing how consistent the Trumquats are when it comes to things they care about passionately. Percentage feeling “proud” that Trump is Presidenting – 26%. Percentage wanting The Mooch to stay after his profane rant – 26%. Percentage who think the Sun orbits the Earth – 26%. Such consistency even puts a twinkle in the dead eyes of Baby Goebbels as he dreams of being a roadie on an American Apartheid tour.  (That guy is only 31-years old and unless he’s Benjamin Button he was taken to the cleaners in his deal with the Devil.)

Last night Dolt went to “wild, wooly, wonderful West Virginia”. That used to be the official tourism slogan. I know that because I did a 5th grade report on the state with an obligatory refrigerator box diorama complete with a papier mache map.

This week has been difficult for the Trumpkin menagerie. Just imagine their consternation last Friday when they got up and discovered they still had health care. Big Daddy Orange, McTurtle, and Paul “Fountainhead” Ryan weren’t able to keep their promise to the faithful MAGA-heads that “they have the right to die penniless due to health care bankruptcy.”

Just imagine the righteous Trumpkinesque anger over not keeping two womenzie-Senatorettes and a guy with brain cancer in line to vote for a simple thing like depriving 32-million people health care. Honestly, the shelf-life of bought politicians ain’t what it used to be.

To heap another insult on the orange loyalists, that cute little pocket-sized Pomade Pez dispenser, The Mooch, got the boot this week. How unfair! He is really the first person who spoke Oranganese in a manner the tried and true Trumpkins could understand – no words over four letters and always screeching like a howler monkey ordering peanuts from the cheap seats at a ballpark.

The Mooch was retired by that new Dolt “Chief-of-Staph”. General Kelly seems like a good choice to the Trumpkin hordes because he tried to outlaw the Mooselimbs. He was in charge of keeping us safe for a whole 27 minutes on that January Friday night way back when before those librul judicial buttinskies got their thobes in a wad.

When it comes to a pedigree, there’s not much wrong with General Kelly. Everyone talks about him like he is a half-priced golden doodle, but that kind of talk makes Trumpkins suspicious. If someone was that good, why in the hell would they work for a two-legged cantaloupe with liver spots?

The Trumquats all have a turd sideways about Gen. Kelly trying to take away Don Il Dumb’s tweeter machine. All the Trumquats agree it is the only way to reliably hear from their dear leader outside of the voices in their heads. If you asked the Trumquats how many people are on Don Il Dumb’s twitter list, they’d say it is between 20-30 Billion give or take a few Mooselimb Kenyans named Obama.

Speaking for myself, I want Gen. Kelly to leave the Mango Macaque alone when it comes to the tweeter machine. Let him tweet. First, it’s additional evidence for the competency hearing; and two, I sleep a little better thinking he might have opposable thumbs.

If that wasn’t enough, the Trumpkins then got all torqued up by the efforts to besmirch the hallowed name of Fox News reporters. It seems as though there was a little problem with a story about a murder in Washington, D.C. and Fox reported about it. It now appears they got some aspects of the story wrong. Like all of it.

That nice man Sean Spicer tried to help Fox with the story by editing it or spell checking it or something like that. He had them come over to the White House and sit with him because he’s always been so very helpful to reporters. Just like his suit coats, Spicey just wasn’t a good fit for his job. You know what they say, “If it don’t fit, that’s another SNL skit.”

Then yesterday the Trumquats had a “come to Mueller” moment when it was revealed he is throwing a grand jury party in D.C. and lots of Trumpies are going to be invited. The Trumquats shouldn’t get their catheters clogged over this because a grand jury is a natural progression in this Coen brothers movie, No Country for Old Sin.

What should worry the Trumquats is that Mueller, like a big cat, is playing with his food. Great prosecutors and let there be no doubt, Mueller is a great prosecutor, like to mess with the minds of potential defendants and their attorneys. No one is talking about this on the teevee, but why would this grand jury information be conveniently leaked the day before Dolt goes on vacay? As they say, “Nothing so wonderfully focuses one’s mind as a hanging.”

Finally, the Trumpbots are most heartened by a Commander-in-Chief, who despite his disability of Vietnam disqualifying bone spurs (the bestest bone spurs the world has ever known), roughing it in a real dump like the White House. The Trumpbots naturally feel sorry for Don Il Dumb or anyone who has to live in a house without the mobility wheels provide.

Now that I’ve insulted everyone with this feeble attempt at satire, I want to leave you with a personal note. I’m taking a step back from contributing here. When I first started writing it was never meant to be in perpetuity. After well over 400 posts it is time to step back and give it a rest.

Thanks to everyone for their patience with my pedantic ways, thanks to MB with affording me this opportunity, and Fredster for all his support and technical expertise.

Good things are on the horizon.

Take care and what’s on your mind today?

 

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Good morning Widdershins.  I truly hope your weekend was a great one.  If you are wondering, our friend MB is on a much deserved vacay.  She will be enjoying some R&R through next week.

Something much different for today.  Almost finished with a post, I ran across this awesome and most righteous Twitter thread from yesterday afternoon.  If ever there is a Nobel Prize for Twitterature, this gentleman will win it.

Eric Garland

Eric Garland

The author’s name is Eric Garland, @ericgarland. His profile says he’s a strategic analyst for businesses and government agencies. A linguist and a bassist.

Imagine for a moment, this is over 240 tweets, back-to-back over a couple of hours yesterday afternoon.  To get them in a form acceptable to WordPress, I copied, pasted, by the ones went through them, and put them in an acceptable form. The substance of the tweets remain original to Mr. Garland.

As to what you would call this, I don’t know.  This is a call to arms.  A call of patriotic resistance.  The climatic speech of every science fiction movie president. A Fox Mulder long-stare soliloquy.  Whatever it is, it is worth the read.

Eric Garland‏@ericgarland

<THREAD> I’m now hearing this meme that says Obama, Clinton, et al. are doing nothing, just gave up. Guys. It’s time for some game theory.

ACTOR ANALYSIS: The Russians enter the Game with a broad objective, flexible tactics, and several acceptable outcomes.

Russian interests have been, for many years now, the subversion of Western institutions, principally NATO, but any will do.

This subversion can take many forms: driving wedges between US-Commonwealth-Euro intel cooperation, break up NATO, create chaos.

This game has been developing for many years, is asymmetrical, and much cheaper than building a decent aircraft carrier.

Plus, the Russians f**king rule at covert shit. Always have. Ask a cold warrior. Mucho respect for our adversaries. They do clever work!

Post-communism, they’re reduced to Drunk Uncle status in the global balance of power. Mouthy, smart, degraded, much reduced in stature.

Russians as *people* are civilized, artistic, enamored of brilliance and tragedy, and generally proud. And should be. They do not like this.

From this position launches an initiative from an old hand at the KGB, now solidified in influence: Subvert for the throat. Go big. Go hard.

While the West is frivolous and lazy and “Post-History,” the clever take advantage. And here begins our present story.

Let’s skip ahead to “Wikileaks.” BRILLIANT. Ingratiate the Left into this anti-establishment distrust of Western intel.

The Dubya Years

George W Bush and Dick Cheney being slovenly, reckless idiots, the moral authority of Iraq and US intel is nil. In step “journalists.

Stealing hard drives from US intel and dumping them to foreign agents? That’s *snicker* “journalism!” FREE SPEECH! ROFLMAO.

Oh, and such grand characters, so well run: Manning, Greenwald. So righteous, yet fragile! And feisty! Try a Twitter war with Glenn!

OH YOU PHILISTINE, YOU JUST HATE JOURNALISM! *sigh* *swigs something strong* And Moscow must have been doubling over.

Putting Snowden and his mole in context

THEN, OMG, that worked so well that the pièce de résistance was next: SNOWDEN!!! BOOYAH! THE BIG GAME! NSA! PRISM! SPASM!

(incidentally, the NSA was about the only agency the Russians took seriously) But then this EARNEST young man. He tells THE TROOTH!

DID YOU KNOW YOUR TOASTER IS SPYING ON YOU? THE GUBMINT! IT IS EVERYWHERE! THEY SPY ON (*controls snickering*) ALLIES! ALL BAD!

And still hungover from the rotten venality of the Iraq War and Bush’s perversion of the Intelligence Community as reliable, Wikileaks journalisms the NSA!

DON’T YOU CALL IT SOMETHING ELSE. HARD DRIVES FROM THE NSA IZ JOURNALISM! Even when you take the files to Brazil! Honest! Ask Glenn!

And then, automagically, our man Ed ends up…what’s this now? In Russia? Well, they are such welcoming folks! How…nice!

Langley and Fort Meade run out of bourbon in about three hours, and every intel guy in Russia is drunk, dancing on the desks, and LAFFING.

AND THE LEFT! HOLY F**KING ADORABLE BATMAN! Honi soit qui mal y pense! How dare you suggest untoward Russian involvement! Journamalisms!!!!

US intel snorts all of the Robotussin in the DC/MD/VA area. Putin calls Snowden “A weird guy.” LOLZ. Moving on to the current chapter.

MEANWHILE, AT THE FOX NATION FORUMS: The other part of this impressive op is percolating – the buttress of the Alt-Right.

ONCE UPON A TIME, Dan Rather chased Nixon around a room asking him questions VERY HARSHLY and the notion of the Evil Media Elite was born.

See, because Nixon got impeached, that meant the media was in on it! WaPo! NYT! Traitors! We look bad! And the media hate begins.

Never mind that to know something in Topeka, somebody’s gotta send you a newspaper or a radio signal or whatevs: The Media Is Lying.

Now, it’s true, high level journalists and editors don’t always see the world like Johnny Lunchpail in Missouri. True facts. But. Trouble.

Republicans decide to create a whole new layer of think tanks and media outlets in the 1980s dedicated to The Other Side.

The think tanks have a POV, but some are quite good, Cato in particular. Heritage came up with what’s now Obamacare. AEI…ehhh. 2 outta 3.

But then the media play comes in. The cranky insane tent pastors on AM radio get…a makeover. They become Legitimate. Embraced.

Magnates start investing in outlets. Brand new pundits get huge audiences yelling about The Way Things Ought to Be (for White People).

And it’s more successful than free chicken and beer. The money flows, the ratings swell. An Australian starts a TV network in the US.

What develops is an attractive, well-produced alternate universe. You no longer need an alternate take. You have alternate facts.

Al Gore mutters and bores his way out of a presidency in a race against a guy who spoke English like he learned it from Rosetta Stone.

And now, the stage is set for a metastasis of batshit nuttery, jingoism, and irrational autocratic fervor. A party becomes a cult.

9/11 and our Response in Context

September 11, 2001 occurs. A buncha guys are in DC who couldn’t wait to go to Iraq. And the right wing media is shiny and tuned-up.

We go kick a bunch of barbarian ass in Afghanistan, as well we should have. They were beating women and destroying Buddhas. F**k ’em.

But then, The Axis of Evil Speech. And all the analysts in DC I know collectively go, “Oh, fuuuuu…they’re not serious, are they?”

Bill Clinton spent most of his years pounding the living snot out of Hussein. Dude built anything funny lookin’, in came the rockets.

There was one concerning nation-state for most, and – hint – it’s in Asia. The other threat was non-state actors. *ahem* Which played out.

And now – *headdesk* – they’re going to Iraq. With bullshit intel. Goddamn it. GODDAMN IT. This is going to suck, said smart people.

And there’s the entire right-wing think tank and media machine blaring, careening, gloating. From the gov’t itself, and from every outlet.

HOW DARE YOU BE SKEPTICAL? WE HAVE AGENCIES! INTEL! IT’S SECRET! DO YOU WANT MORE PLANES IN YOUR NOSTRILS, UP YOUR BUTTS? BE PATRIOTIC!

And goddamn, did those media outlets sell a lot of ads for trucks, pain killers, pharmaceuticals and financial services. $$$$$$

Many earnest patriots also pointed out, hey, um, there apparently are no weapons that could have blown up Cleveland, so…

But now, this whole thing has morphed into tribalism. YES THEY DID TOO FIND WEAPONS OF MASS DEPRESSION AND YOU SUCK BUSH ROCKS PUSSY

Ann Coulter comes on TV to talk over B-roll of rusty munitions WE SOLD HUSSEIN and said, well look, there they are. Total. Propaganda.

America looks like shit. Our intel services take a helluva beating. Iraq’s invasion – which was basically unplanned – results in chaos.

Katrina. Bush. Looking out the window. Confused. Hey, but in intel news, the National Geospatial-Intel Agency helps critically.

2008.  The housing Ponzi we used to get out of the DotComBust-9/11-era recession has now gone pear-shaped. Utterly nuclear.

America’s banks, the one thing other than movies and video games we do reliably, all shit the bed simultaneously.

The Obama Administration

We then elect a cappuccino-colored president whose middle name is Hussein. The Right goes completely over the f**king cliff into insane.

They start the TEA PARTY! YO REMEMBER BOSTON! PAAAATRIOTS SOMETHING SOMETHING! TEA PARTY! NOTHING MATTERS TAKE IT ALL BACK YAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!

This political movement happens when the only thing Obama has really said with conviction is “Fired up! Ready to go!” In late November 2008.

But ON GEORGE WASHINGTON’S GRAVE THIS HAS GONE TOO FAR!!! And the entire right-wing media gets its next several years of revenue LOCKED.

Now, we’ve got a really, reaaaally fertile field in which former KGB agents can make a long play. And Moscow gets to work.

America’s at this weird nihilistic place, which is one thing for France and Russia, but NOT for earnest midwesterners who are agape.

Now the American Left has got some juice back again. But the Right is just apoplectic from pure suffering. Both are ripe for subversion.

The Left is out of love with American business and military-industrial, the Right foams at the mouth against legitimate government.

And the guys who have been twisting minds from Vladivostok to Havana and back get to work building an “alt” media structure.

We’ve already covered the genius of that who Wikileaks op on the Left. SCORE! Now for the perversion of the formerly nationalist Right.

JESUS TAPDANCING CHRIST THERE’S A BLACK DUDE IN THE WHITE HOUSE! LIVING THERE! It’s not hard to convince Southerners this is insane.

But put a little elbow grease in on some internet forums, and pretty soon you can have Northern John Adams-type conservatives, too.

A whole generation of disaffect Rush Limbaugh fans (WE LISTENED AND DITTOED SO HARD WHY IS THERE A BLACK DUDE THERE?) is ripe for picking.

In addition to alt-finance sites and “Russia Today” a new TV network, they start infiltrating “social media.”

Disclosure: Because I’m mouthy all the time like this, RT had me on as a guest. They prop up US “subversives.” And they don’t edit you!

Fun fact: Al Jazeera and RT just let me talk. US media almost always wants some hand in your final product before booking you. Ironic, no?

But from about 2009 to the 2016 election, a madness is being brewed and slowly poured down the throats of increasingly hysterical Americans.

When you imbibe from this potion, everything is awful and everyone official is lying to you. Only other members of the cult are with you!

US media, which is complicit in many of our problems, is portrayed for the extremists as conspiratorial liars. All the time.

Formerly sane members of US society start sounding like my schizophrenic grandfather, who said Government was keeping him from His Mission.

Only the Gubmint knew the Archangel Gabriel was sending him to find the next Jesus. So, cut it out, CIA! Stop it, Giant Conspiracy!

And then people you knew from Functional Daily Life started talking that way. People with car dealerships. Dentists. Regular folk.

They started with CONSPIRACY, especially after 2012, because DAMMIT NO THERE SHOULDN’T BE A BLACK DUDE TWO TERMS NOOOO! NO NO NO NO NO NO

THEY ARE ALL IN ON IT. THE CORPORATIONS. THE MEDIA WHORES. THE GOVERNMENT! (except for my Medicare, don’t touch that) ALL OF THEM!

A CABAL CALLED The Pentaveret: The Queen. The Pope. The Gettys. The Rothschilds. AND COLONEL SANDERS, BEFORE HE WENT TITS UP!

If you haven’t unfollowed by now, 1. You’re nuts and 2. Thank you for indulging my So I Married an Axe Murderer reference.

The 2016 Election

MOVING ON. The conspiratorial fever at about 108, we begin the 2016 election – AGAINST EVERYTHING HOLY – in 2015.

The Republicans debate over 712 times, discussing topics such as who hated Obamacare more, and who had a large penis. Jesus, that happened.

The Democrats all debate who’s going to get out of Hillary’s way first, except for VERMONT’S OWN BERNIE SANDERS, who…gets popular?

I’m from Vermont and have known Bernie forever, so I’m very surprised, but everyone kinda likes it. Hillary wins anyhow.

And now, the target for electoral mischief is enormous. Hillary is the most known quantity in America, with huge backstory.

Creating a conspiracy narrative around the Clintons is like creating a “southern” narrative around NASCAR and grits.

Now – with Trump as the non-conformist, not-like-all-the-other-rotten-conspiratorial-assholes paragon, the Russians go into overdrive.

The Russians didn’t create Trump – only New York City and American gullibility could have done that. But they’ve got a SWEETHEART outcome.

Trump – a moron – is probably unlikely to take the whole enchilada, but that’s perfect. If he gets close enough, he can cry UNFAIR! forever.

Amazing scenario for Russia – instead of RT, they get an institutional nihilist chowderhead with American credentials. They butter him up.

Hell, to hear many tell of it, the have kompromat on him. But anyhow, they invest in his stuff. He was there in 2013. They have a lever.

IF on the off chance, Trump actually (and who could guess this) wins, then…wow, they’ve got quite an opening.

Either way, on the run-up to Nov 2016, Russian involvement was as subtle as a fart in a spacesuit. Scroll down my TL for details.

The U.S. IC had its hair on fire. This situation was incredibly dangerous. A paranoid U.S. faction backing a rogue with ties to Russia.

Back to Present Day

OK, Jesus, at LONG LAST, back to my initial premise. Why didn’t Obama and Clinton “do something?” JESUS, WHAT CAN YOU DO?

You come out and have the CIA enter the goddamn race for Clinton? True or not, we look like some weird cryptofascist state.

Or, you let the Russkis laugh and taunt and infiltrate Facebook with majillions of propaganda tales for idiots? Just let them run around?

Do you come out the day after this totally weird-smelling abomination of an election with all its technical difficulties?

Do you tell America the day after the election that Russia spearfished all of our think tanks in brazen fashion?

Hillary, for her part, gives a brief and all-too-calm speech and goes hiking. Probably the best move on the board.

Obama WELCOMES! Mr. Trump in an intense, welcoming welcome. To the White House. Mr. Big Winner Guy! Welcome! Fellow American!

Trump looks like he swallowed a goldfish and stares at the floor a bit too long. As if maybe a joke has gone too far.

In the next month, a small band of propagandists run in a circle and try to look like they’re forming a government. It’s ungainly.

And now, it’s December 11th. Trump says he don’t need no stinkin’ intel agencies. Russia (BWA HAHAHAHAAAA) blames Ukraine! LOLOLOLOLZZZ

A lot of Republicans stare into the middle distance, except for McCain and Graham who are NOT HAVING THIS SHIT. (I salute you, gentlemen.)

And here we are. Americans. Hopefully soon united. This isn’t a partisan issue. Obama isn’t late to the party. People are doing their jobs.

If you think any of this is easy, you’re ignorant and delusional. Tonight, though, I write to you with great hope.

Music Working Up to Crescendo and Aliens are about to get Whooped

This may be America’s finest hour, as we act together with unshakable resolve to deal with enemies foreign and domestic.

We have done so in the past and come out a stronger, more just, more pluralistic nation. We will do so now. And for me? Or die trying.

America is the steward of a genius system entrusted to flawed stewards whose descendants seem to act on the right side of history.

This system is not rotten, not beyond repair, not exiled from the future. We have been infiltrated by agents who would drive us mad.

This is a nation built on civilization, humanity, and reason, rejecting the febrile superstitions of the past. It must stand. And will.

We are at present in a place of danger where some of our fellow citizens have forgotten our most cherished values. We’ve been here before.

America, reluctantly but dutifully, recognizes its internal contradictions and failings. Slavery. Racism. Internment. Classism.

The genius documents that gave rise to noble American sentiments were themselves authored by those who failed them. (h/t @ Mr. Jefferson)

We spilled the blood of our brothers to resolve the contradictions of slavery and then abandoned the project while killing Indians.

Americans proclaimed the equality of all men while treating women as chattel and all non-whites as lesser. We are indeed hypocrites.

But to be American is to accept that unflinchingly and to soldier forth for future generations, and DO BETTER, GODDAMN IT.

There are those who would mire us in worldly cynicism, to anchor us in a world where our institutions betray forever, where values perish.

And to be American is to face that intellectual, moral, and spiritual assault with the unshakeable devotion to something more lofty.

And when that loftiness fails, as it so often does, to be American is to seize it again and again, knowing that our Creator desire Progress.

Progress can come from Traditionalists or Labor Unionists or mystics or musicians or doctors or Senators or journalists. All are exhorted.

The Progress demanded by our Creator can be achieved by immigrants and natives, skeptics and believers, the elite and the humble alike.

That is America. That is the promise that Americans oft ignore and which more cynical nations would defile for their own gain.

That America will last long after I have died, long after new people have picked the torch. Long after we betray it again, as we will.

But America will go on, even if by another name, unless all who have heard her name are extinguished. This is just the locus of promise.

America came from the olive groves of Italy and the shipyard of Plymouth and the islands of the Philippines. Indivisible.

America came from the Torah and Voltaire’s Candide and Adam Smith and zen koans and Greek mathematics and Rumi’s poetry.

America is all these things, and should yet another absolutist demagogue, foreign or domestic seize her, it will be far from the end.

Now is a time for patriots. It’s also Sunday afternoon. I’m gonna get a beer and watch football. God Bless America, and all nations.

 

What’s on your mind today?

trump-putin

Where to start?  How about cold-cocking a rambunctious 69-year-old oxygen-dependent woman who dared not genuflect at a Donnie Deplorable donnybrook?  Or how about starting World War III by blowing Iranian boats out of the water if they make ugly gestures offending the tender sensibilities of our sailors?  What about discussing the clamorous Yam going on Russian T.V. and declaring his enduring homoerotic fascination with Vladie Dearest?

Or we could just dwell on Hillary’s pneumonia.

Then there is the all important transparency.  Transparency is last week’s “optics” that was the prior week’s “lack of access”.  Luckily all three collided last Sunday in the iPhone clip that has been played and replayed as if it were the Zapruder film showing the infamous second stumble into the campaign van.  Of course it doesn’t stop there since the dark cauldron of internet rumors knows no end.

We could spend our time exploring just how deplorable the marauding hordes of angry Trump phobia-phobic phobes are, but we started that discussion back in May.  That’s when we discovered Trumpkins consider “white discrimination” to be as large a problem as discrimination against minorities.  We could talk about the Alt-Right not considering themselves racist, since they just hate Jews, but that is merely the beginning when talking about the parade of deplorables.

trump-poll-discrimination

Nearly half of Trump’s supporters described African-Americans as more ‘violent’ than whites. The same proportion described African-Americans as more ‘criminal’ than whites, while 40 percent described them as more ‘lazy’ than whites.”

A Pew poll released in February found that 65 percent of Republicans believe the next president should “speak bluntly even if critical of Islam as a whole” when talking about Islamic extremists.

Another Reuters/Ipsos online poll in July found that 58 percent of Trump supporters have a “somewhat unfavorable” view of Islam and 78 percent believe Islam was more likely to encourage acts of terrorism.

The deplorable remark brought with it the Right’s professional victimization.  The victimhood kicked-in with all its righteous fury and so did the Right’s selective amnesia.  It seems they conveniently forgot that Deplorable Donnie called half the country losers.

Just last night former Secretary of State Colin Powell reluctantly joined the fray by way of purloined emails.  Secretary Powell has little good to say about the Yam, his orange-tinted acolytes, or their racist ways.  The Powell emails have lovely pet names to describe the Yam like “national disgrace,” “international pariah,” and “racist”.trump-deplorables

In keeping with what is the equivalent of muscle memory, our attention could just return to Hillary’s email which is the trusty stand-in for every false equivalency story for the past two years.  The Washington Post summed it up quite nicely by pointing out how good news about Hillary’s email doesn’t seem to find its way to the front page or into Matt Lauer’s “Moderating for Dummies” textbook.

First is a memo FBI Director James B. Comey sent to his staff explaining that the decision not to recommend charging Ms. Clinton was “not a cliff-hanger” and that people “chest-beating” and second-guessing the FBI do not know what they are talking about. Anyone who claims that Ms. Clinton should be in prison accuses, without evidence, the FBI of corruption or flagrant incompetence.

Second is the emergence of an email exchange between Ms. Clinton and former secretary of state Colin Powell in which he explained that he used a private computer and bypassed State Department servers while he ran the agency, even when communicating with foreign leaders and top officials. Mr. Powell attempted last month to distance himself from Ms. Clinton’s practices, which is one of the many factors that made the email story look worse. Now, it seems, Mr. Powell engaged in similar behavior.trump-putin-bromance

Last is a finding that 30 Benghazi-related emails that were recovered during the FBI email investigation and recently attracted big headlines had nothing significant in them. Only one, in fact, was previously undisclosed, and it contained nothing but a compliment from a diplomat. But the damage of the “30 deleted Benghazi emails” story has already been done.

Since it is pretty much accepted fact that there is a double standard in the coverage of the two candidates, there are now compilations of questions the media has refused to ask the whirling Cheeto.  There is even convoluted excuses for engaging in false equivalencies.

For a moment and contrary to the ephemeral nature of optics, let’s talk facts – as boring as that might be. When it comes to policy, the Mango Meerkat has cobbled together 9,000 words on his website while Hillary weighs in at around 113,000.  The Orangealope has a grand total of seven, that’s seven whole policies, while Hillary has thirty-three.

In addition, national unemployment is down to around full-employment numbers.  Inflation is non-existent.  Gas is $2.00 a gallon.  And only announced yesterday, the median income for U.S. households jumped 5.2% from 2014 to 2015.  That represents the biggest one-year increase since the Census Bureau started tracking this data in 1968.  As a result, over 3 million Americans rose out of poverty in 2015.  It’s hard to overstate just how big a deal this is.hillary-flag

Remember the last time this happened? A Clinton was in the White House who likewise had spent seven years cleaning up the mess of prior Republican administrations.  History might not repeat itself, but it sure does rhyme.  So yes, please, another term of this would be nice.

What’s on your mind today?

 

Happy Wednesday Widdershinners. I hope your day is a good one.

Just a short post to move us along.

Yesterday’s speech by President Obama was exceptional.  It was a Consoler-in-Chief, inspirational, experiential, and spiritual masterpiece. I’ve not been a fan of Obama for the most part, but yesterday’s valediction in Dallas was extraordinary. For a Kenyan Muslim, he sure knows a lot of scripture.Hillary Bernie endorsement

Bernie Sanders finally endorsed Hillary. It was a full-throated endorsement.  Even prior to yesterday, 85% of Bernie’s voters have already seen the light on the road to Damascus and climbed aboard the “H Express”. My only criticism of the event: Bernie needed hugging lessons.

The great Bogey Yam is continuing his auditions for the new Fox show, “So You Think You Can Vice President.” Yesterday he was in Indiana kicking the tires on Gov. Mike Pensive. It seems as if Pence has mainlined some serious carotene – he appeared as pumpkinesque as the Bogey Yam.

Congress is leaving on vacay early. It’s an abbreviated vacay of just seven weeks so, of course, they would leave early. It appears Paul Ryan didn’t want to vote on terrorists getting guns because, well, summertime is fun time for terrorists. Funding for Zika, opioid addiction, veterans – all that stuff can wait – the NRA (Non-Reasonable Americans) said so.

It’s not like Congress hasn’t been doing important stuff.  Jason Chaffetz, Chairman of the Congressional Overreach and Reach-Around Committee, figures what the country needs is another investigation of Hillary.  He’s written a letter to the D.C. U.S. Attorney asking him to make Hillary stop being mean to the Republicans still recovering from their DIY lobotomies.AM hands up

That’s pretty much the news, but I’ve meaning to mention another subject for a couple of weeks. Today’s a good day. If you have watched any of the cable shows, particularly NBC or MSNBC (motto: Our anchors canoodle, but never on air) you have been bombarded with the “Hillary Trust Deficit”. Mrs. Greenspan gets cross-eyed and her toes scrunch each and every time she gets to blather on about the Bogey Yam being more “trusted” than Hillary.

Here’s why I bring this up.  The Wall Street Journal/NBC poll on that question is bogus. Totally worthless and contrived. I can go into the reasons in the comments, but suffice it to say, survey instrument construction is central to serviceable data.

The WSJ/NBC poll asks the question as, “Being honest and straightforward.” Using straightforward as the modifier to honesty is a ruse to drive down Hillary’s numbers to follow the preordained narrative. Even though 76% of everything the Bogey Yam says has been fact checked as a lie, he is perceived to have no filter on his pie hole, despise “political correctness,” and believes insulting others is his right under the “13th Article” in the Constitution.Pew Research on Qualifications

If you pair “honest” with “truthful”, as the Pew Research Center survey did, the results were within the margin of error even during the height of emailgate and gategate (scandals yet to materialize from Republican fever dreams).

The other issue is this, and it’s not limited to just NBC/MSNBC as they troll for addled Fox viewers, if there isn’t an issue upon which to drive a wedge, how can they sell time based on viewership?  In other words, there has to be something to make a horse race a race – no one wants to watch Secretariat matched up against a three-legged mule with a limp.

Not that Chuckles Todd and his poll-baking, elfin friends would ever admit to this, but they don’t really have to.  Here’s the proof:

Issues Research from Pew

On each and every issue other than “Reducing Special Interests Influence” Hillary trounces the Bogey Yam or is within the margin of error. So be not in despair my friends.  Be not troubled when the yakkers wax prolific on Hillary’s deficiencies and der Drumpf’s strengths. Given the Republican primary, the yakkers are just trying to dress up a three-legged mule that outdistanced sixteen other asses.

What’s on your mind today?

 

Donald Trump

With Mitch McConnell’s merry band of Kabuki cross dressers refusing to bring up Judge Merrick Garland for confirmation, refusing to hold hearings on his nomination, and even refusing to meet with the man, in The Godfather speak, this is what the Republicans are going to the mattresses for:

 

To ensure Donald Trump has the ability to make a lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court.

Think about that.

 

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Sanders and Hillary

Bernie Sanders believes it would be “outrageously undemocratic” not to continue running for President.  He says, “Our progressive agenda has enormous support.  For anyone to rule us out is making a mistake.”

Three things:

  1. I wonder if “outrageously undemocratic” includes calling oneself a Democrat in order to gain access to and glom onto a fundraising list.
  2. Like most all men, Sanders has a problem judging size. When he contends his agenda has enormous support obviously it isn’t quite so “enormous” since Hillary has somewhere in the neighborhood of 1.8 million more votes than he does — so far.
  3. Finally, count me in as a proud mistake-maker because I ruled him out about 100 miles back.  To paraphrase The Godfather, “Leave the Bernie stickers, take the cannolis.”

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Before it was Donald Trump, before it was Morning Schmoe, and before it was Tweety, it was this guy giving Hillary advice:

 

 

While the sexist double standard didn’t start with him, it sure didn’t end with him either.  This kind of thing along with refusing to speak up are permission slips.

Feel free to discuss anything at all.

 

For those tuning in for the sustenance provided by MB, she is surfing atop an avalanche of work.  She will return next week, but for those who need a more immediate fix, this post shares more than a few genetic markers with her post from last Monday – There Went the Judge.Standing

With Justice Scalia’s death and Mitch McConnell’s recalcitrance toward his constitutional responsibility of “advice and consent” in the confirmation process of a new Associate Justice, we will hear lots of talk about a “constitutional crisis”.  Quite honestly, most of this clamor will come from those on “our” side of the issue – so let’s get something out-of-the-way.

The Republican abdication of their responsibilities is not a constitutional crisis – no more than a single off ramp is the most momentous, make-it-or-break-it, part of a cross-country trip.  On such a trip, there are many off ramps, one no more significant than the next – they are all part of the same journey.

The real constitutional crisis has been festering for the past thirty years.  The Right has successfully steered us on a journey where there is contempt, not just for government, but for the act of governance itself.  There is a general despisement for not just regulation, but for being regulated in any fashion.  There is an equally fanatical and fantastic notion that lawlessness will somehow breed spontaneous libertarian legality.  In furtherance of this inanity there is a toolbox of tricks for delegitimizing opponents as dishonest and immoral traitors to the Constitution.

This Court vacancy gives the country an opportunity to correct its course from a smoke and mirrors scheme of constitutional interpretation founded in 1980s political sloganeering – Scalia’s originalism and textualism – back to.  It is time to return to legal interpretation founded in a fact-based world.

In addition, there is the opportunity to once again bring dignity and civility to oral arguments unlike Scalia’s preference for an hour resembling acerbic Jerry Springer wannabes.  Finally, there’s every reason to believe the newly appointed Justice will respect the canons of judicial ethics meaning hunting and political trips with litigants are verboten.

Supreme CourtFortunately, we have two opportunities to save the Court and return it to the normalcy contemplated by the Framers.  The first is the “normal order” of a nomination by President Obama.  This opportunity depends upon Republicans being shamed into giving the nominee a confirmation hearing and a floor vote.  While karma has seen to it that Donald Trump is what the RNC deserves, I would be amazed if Mitch McConnell spontaneously grew a conscience.

The other opportunity is what most of us have been working toward for almost a decade now – the election of Hillary as President with pantsuit tails durable enough to retake the Senate.  Such a turn of events would allow McConnell to continue to stew in his brew of acerbic antagonism without fear of interruption.

This second turn of events would, in all likelihood, result in a more progressive appointment leading to the unceremonious euthanasia of at least seven miscreant legal monstrosities so adored by the oligarchs of the Right.  Here is a brief rundown:

Starting with Citizens United v. F.E.C., which amplified the role of money in politics by declaring money is speech (a career long project of the gaping maw of amorality calling itself Mitch McConnell); then there’s District of Columbia v. Heller, which miraculously found a personal Second Amendment right to keep firearms after just 230 years of examining the Constitution; Shelby County v. Holder, which struck down a key provision of the Voting Rights Act (that meddlesome process so antithetical to Conservative heterodoxy); Glossip v. Gross, which upheld a lethal-injection protocol used in executions (nothing a good vet couldn’t accomplish at a much more reasonable rate); Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, which allowed some corporations a religious exemption from a requirement to provide insurance coverage for contraception (if only you could macramé an I.U.D. Hobby Lobby would sell the kits);  Walmart Stores v. Dukes, which limited the availability of class actions, thereby, causing individual litigants to defy economics by incurring thousands of dollars in legal fees to recover nominal sums; and a personal favorite, the Chamber of Commerce wet dream known as AT&T Mobility v. Concepcion, which upheld ant-scribbled fine-print contracts requiring consumers to arbitrate their cases one-by-one especially after Walmart v. Duke.Sitting

If there were ever a call to action requiring activism, it is this turn of events.  Lady Justice has been a victim of abuse for the past 30 years.  Through activism and good fortune she will be freed from political sloganeering charlatans putting their thumbs on her scales.

Enjoy your day and take the conversation in any direction you might be interested in discussing.

Good Friday morning Widdershins.Hillary Blue background

Ashes to ashes,

Dust to dust,

People are scared,

The GOP’s gone bust.

This was the prayer of commitment delivered as we watched the Republican Party cannibalize itself last night.  There is little wonder why the alarm bells are ringing in the ever diminishing circle of thinkers in this country.  People are finally realizing no matter who the Republicans nominate from this Rogues Gallery of Know-nothings, the result is the same – a future navigated through a rearview mirror.

The alarm is being sounded in editorials like the one in The Washington Post excoriating Bernie Sanders.  Here are just a few sentences:

Sen. Sanders is a politician selling his own brand of fiction to a slice of the country that eagerly wants to buy it…Mr. Sanders is a lot like many other politicians. Strong ideological preferences guide his thinking, except when politics does…When reality is ideologically or politically inconvenient, he and his campaign talk around it. Mr. Sanders’s success so far does not show that the country is ready for a political revolution. It merely proves that many progressives like being told everything they want to hear.

Hard ChoicesThat last sentence, “[P]rogressives like being told everything they want to hear,” should send a shock wave to the subterranean crowd of keyboard jockeys.  If the tune sounds familiar, we last heard it in 2008 from the “hope and change” chorus as they lip-synced it to every song in the top 100.

The only discordant voice in that choir was Hillary’s.  She dared to be realistic.  She challenged that hopey/changey thinking with the words:

The skies will open, the light will come down, celestial choirs will be singing and everyone will know we should do the right thing and the world will be perfect.  Maybe I’ve just lived a little long, but I have no illusions about how hard this is going to be.  You are not going to wave a magic wand to make special interests disappear.

Even now, Obama is conceding Hillary was right in 2008:

Obama, for all his political optimism, is on Clinton’s side of this debate. He doesn’t just seem frustrated by Sanders’s theory of political revolution — he seems, at times, regretful about the high expectations he created for liberals in 2008, and the fury with which his campaign assailed Clinton for the narrowness of her political vision.

So now the same organizations, run by the same young men swilling Red Bull, who maraud over the internet throwing keyboard tantrums, are again preaching pie-in-the-sky.  Doing the same thing over and over again doesn’t seem to indicate insanity to them, it is their only playbook.I'm on my way

To this I say, “Reality is the price you pay when the propofol runs out.”  We can ill-afford to be huffing fantasy juice when at least three seats on the Supreme Court are at risk.

Let’s do a quick reality check:  Where were the hopey/changey boyz in the 2010 or 2014 mid-terms?  This lack of attention, lack of enthusiasm, and laziness toward the hard work of politics has resulted in Republican control of the House.  This is due to gerrymandering courtesy of 32 Republican governors and 25 state legislatures fully controlled by Republicans.

There are 211 safe Republican House seats, just 7 short of a working majority.  Of these safe seats, only 16 were won by fewer than 10 percentage points.  Toss-up seats are an endangered species.

Hillary Campaign SignsWhat this means is simple – these safe Republicans don’t fear general elections — they only fear primaries!  The fear is that someone will run farther to their right and out “conservative” them in the primary.

When you place this lens on Bernie’s call for a political revolution, ask this one question:  Just how many Republicans are going to proclaim in a primary their new-found love for turning the nation into the United States of Sweden?

For those believing that force of personality can incite a political revolution, there is detox waiting.  This was the same stuff the Obamabots were trafficking in 2008.  Political reality had a little something to say about that.

Opinion leaders are beginning to understand what most of us around these parts have known for a decade or more:  While pragmatism doesn’t lend itself to fancy four-color stylized “Hope” posters, realistic pragmatism does have a concrete goal and a plan to get there.  As Hillary said to BLM activists:Bumper Sticker

I don’t believe you change hearts.  I believe you change laws, you change allocation of resources, you change the way systems operate.

Hillary is the only person on both sides of this race who understands superior knowledge and diligence can be tools of power.  She is the only person certified in the operation of such power tools.  We would be fortunate to benefit from her craftsmanship.

Take this conversation in any direction you might like.  Enjoy your Friday.

 

 

 

 


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Blog Archive

October 2017
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Kellyanne Conway’s new job

So similar

Take the kids to work? NO!

3 turds control fate of healthcare for millions

That moment when *your* pussy gets grabbed

You go gurl! h/t Adam Joseph

***Disaster Donations***

Quick links for donations.

Donations for our furry, and other critter friends:

Texas SPCA Donate Page

Houston TX SPCA Donation Page

Red Rover Group

For the Virgin Islands (Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands)
CFVI.net

All Hands Disaster Relief:
https://www.hands.org/

Puerto Rico’s First Lady’s organization:
http://unidosporpuertorico.com/en/

Americares (provides medical/health support)
http://www.americares.org/en/

“The” Book

Nice picture of our gal

Time till the Grifter in Chief is Gone

Hopefully soonerJanuary 21st, 2021
3.3 years to go.