Not Ready Yet to Feel the Bern.

Elect me and GET EVERYTHING FREE!

I keep hearing some rumor about Bernie Sanders as the Democratic nominee for president.  So can someone tell me what that’s about? The Bernie Sanders I know isn’t a Democrat and never has been.

Sanders has definitely over promised and will undeliver as president. If a moderate Democratic president gets nothing from a far-Right Congress a Democratic Socialist will get less than nothing.

Bernie jump starts the heart of dissatisfied liberals in way Hillary Clinton never could, but the idealism has to be offset by the practical in a purely practical sense I do not see a way Sanders gets anything done with a Republican Congress which would be even more hostile to his Democratic socialism than they were to his predecessor President Obama whom Republicans accused of being a socialist.

Politics does not care about “possible” and “impossible.” Politics cares about do you have enough votes? A President Sanders would enter office with not enough reliable votes among the Dems and none among the Repubs.

Optimism is one thing Sanders supporters have in spades. What they don’t have are policy initiatives which can be turned into the law of the land. I said Sanders has over promised. He has. I said politics is about how many votes you have and Sanders doesn’t have enough: not in the popular vote, not in the Electoral College, and certainly not in the House and Senate.

No..I'm not interested in being your vice-president, Hillary.

No..I’m not interested in being your vice-president, Hillary.

Look at history and see what happened the Democrats nominated a candidate as liberal as Sanders. That would be George McGovern in 1972 and he lost all but two states to Richard Nixon and got slaughtered in the Electoral College 520-17.

I hate to tell my fellow progressives this hard, but salient truth: the majority of Americans are not as far to the Left as we are, but if you’re going to be on one political extreme than the other, it works better to be on the far Right. Just ask Trump and Cruz. Moderates on both sides far better than the fringes.

For a Bernie Sanders presidency to work, you would first need to have Democratic Socialists in prominent positions as U.S. governors, senators, and representatives. There would have to be a established, entrenched and vibrant base already securely in place for a President Sanders to succeed with his ambitious agenda. Without that support system, electing Sanders would make him nothing but a figurehead with no legislative clout whatsoever.

I don’t dislike Sen. Sanders in the least. If anything I’m far closer to Sanders in terms of my personal philosophy than I am a mushy moderate like Clinton. However, I don’t believe Sanders can win the general election and that is what I’m most concerned about.

If you can’t beat your own local Republican representative it doesn’t matter if Sanders wins (which I don’t believe he can because they never would LET him win and I don’t see a snowball’s chance of him getting 270 electoral votes), so if you don’t want to deal with more gridlock, start by voting against EVERY Republican on the ballot because little ones grow up to become big ones, start running and supporting progressives and real liberals locally and groom them to become national ones.

That’s how the other side is doing it and they’re winning. We’re just whining and losing.   You have to play a long game to win the game of politics unless you have Koch and Adelson bucks when you can just buy all the whores you want and get them elected.

I don’t give a shit about progressives/centrists/liberals/moderates/conservatives or any of these manufactured, made-up terms designed to divide and conquer people. Everybody needs clean water, fresh air, edible food and a safe place to live. Tell me who’s got the best PLAN to get Black folks there and I’m all-in.

No permanent friends, no permanent enemies. Only permanent interests. I do not discern a significant difference in how a Republican or Democratic lights the streets and picks up the garbage. If Bernie Sanders is the best choice to advance my interests, I’ll support him.

But first Sanders has to convince me he can win in November.  I want the strongest candidate in the general election who can keep the White House from falling into the hands of the Republicans.  I know how Clinton can win.  I’m waiting for Sanders to show me how a Socialist can win in Red State America.

I’m still kicking the tires on the Bernie Bus and the Clinton Cruiser and haven’t decided which one I’m ready to ride on.   It would be nice if if the Sanders supporters weren’t on my ass to choose a side or questioning whether I’ve taken leave of my senses because I haven’t signed on yet.   Back up and give a brutha room to breathe, okay?

Prayers Are Not Enough

There have been thousands more memorials for the dead since Sandy Hook.

As opposed to the slow-to-no response from the 2016 Republican presidential candidates to the Colorado Springs shootings less than a week ago, following this week’s  the shooting spree in San Bernadino that left 14 dead, most of them reacted  quickly to get out their expressions of shock and sympathy for public consumption.

Notice any differences between the Democratic and Republicans?

“Our prayers are with the victims, their families, and the first responders in San Bernardino who willingly go into harm’s way to save others,” Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) tweeted.

It was remarkably similar to the response from Cruz following the shooting at a Planned Parenthood office in Colorado Springs last week.

“Praying for the loved ones of those killed, those injured & first responders who bravely got the situation under control in Colorado Springs,” Cruz tweeted at the time.

“Praying for all those victimized by the shootings in San Bernardino, California today,” tweeted New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.

Jeb Bush’s message was nearly identical.

“Praying for the victims, their families & the San Bernardino first responders in the wake of this tragic shooting,” he tweeted.

“My thoughts and prayers are with the shooting victims and their families in San Bernardino,” wrote Ben Carson.

Donald Trump, not surprisingly, offered a response with a bit more attitude — but it still said nothing about guns.

“California shooting looks very bad. Good luck to law enforcement and God bless. This is when our police are so appreciated!” Trump tweeted.

The Democratic hopefuls struck a strikingly different tone.

“I refuse to accept this as normal. We must take action to stop gun violence now,” Hillary Clinton tweeted.

“Mass shootings are becoming an almost everyday occurrence in this country,” Bernie Sanders tweeted. “This sickening and senseless gun violence must stop.”

Martin O’Malley called out the National Rifle Association by name.

“Horrifying news out of #SanBernardino. Enough is enough: it’s time to stand up to the @NRA and enact meaningful gun safety laws.”
Prayers are no substitute for taking action. The Democrats say something must be done but lack the will or votes to do anything. The Republicans say a prayer and do nothing.

My reply? God helps those who help themselves.

Not sure which “meaningful gun safety laws” could be enacted to address rampant gun violence in America, but one thing clear to me is prayers aren’t working.

Prayers are no substitute for action.

obama grief

There may be value in prayer and I’m not knocking it, but if God is busy at a football game or something, I don’t leave it all in His hands. More has to be done than sending up prayers to a God who may not be there or may not be interested in getting involved.

I prayed for change.
I prayed after Sandy Hook.
I prayed after Charleston.
I prayed after Paris.
I prayed after Colorado Springs.
I prayed time and time again after senseless acts of violence here in America, in Europe, Africa, the Middle East and around this troubled globe.

I pray and nothing changes.   If we have learned nothing from Sandy Hook, Virginia Tech, Columbine, Aurora, Colorado,  and now San Bernardino it’s that grief is not enough, tears are not enough, prayers are not enough.

This says to me maybe I should pray less and do more.

Republican Enablers Make Attacks on Abortion Providers Possible. Democratic Wimps Make It Inevitable.

Colorado Springs shooting suspect Robert Lewis Dear of North Carolina is seen in undated photos provided by the El Paso County Sheriff's Office. A gunman burst into a Planned Parenthood clinic Friday, Nov. 27, 2015 and opened fire, launching several gunbattles and an hourslong standoff with police as patients and staff took cover. By the time the shooter surrendered, at least three people were killed, including a police officer and at least nine others were wounded, authorities said. (El Paso County Sheriff's Office via AP)

Colorado Springs shooting suspect Robert Lewis Dear of North Carolina: the latest American Psycho

“We can’t let it become normal. If we truly care about this — if we’re going to offer up our thoughts and prayers again, for God knows how many times, with a truly clean conscience — then we have to do something about the easy accessibility of weapons of war on our streets to people who have no business wielding them. Period. Enough is enough.”
~ President Obama in response to the shootings at a Planned Parenthood clinic

I’m going to engage in speculation here, but I feel certain it isn’t reckless or irresponsible speculation.   The motives and motivations of Robert Dear, the suspect in the Colorado Springs shooting spree  which left three dead and nine wounded, are yet unknown.   What his political leanings were or party affiliation was is also still in doubt, but here’s what I believe isn’t in doubt:  this one is on the Republicans.

I’m not going to lay the blame on conservatism as a whole, but specifically the fault goes to the Republicans. Between Fox News, right-wing radio and opportunistic G.O.P. politicians in cheap suits making Planned Parenthood part of their Axis of Evil, it was only a matter of time before some asshole got their grubby mitts on a gun and started shooting up a clinic. “I’m going to kill cops, patients, nurses and doctors to save the babies because I’m Pro-Life!”

It wasn’t just Carly Fiorina lying her Botoxed face off with a phony video slamming Planned Parenthood as a baby body parts merchant. Fiorina was the one to lie and keep lying after she got caught lying. Fuck the truth and fuck the facts. ARE YOU NOT OUTRAGED?

It’s a goddamn travesty it is even necessary to have police guarding clinics for a woman to undergo a medical procedure.

That’s the Republicans for you. They light the fire, throw gasoline on it, push you in and claim you were clumsy and fell in, then demand an apology for being accused. There is always a chance this Angry White Man could turn out to be a Pro-Choicer who staged a false flag covert op to gin up sympathy for abortion clinics and the movement. We know that’s bullshit, right?

Dr. George Tiller: murdered by an anti-abortion terrorist in 2009.

It is completely acceptable to blame the Republican Party for an abortion clinic terrorist when they have created the political climate in the U.S. that emboldens and then sympathizes with this sort of domestic terrorist action. If wasn’t for the fact a cop was among the slain the GOP would be as sympathetic as they were when Dr. George Tiller was murdered in Kansas by another Angry White Man with a gun.

Dr. Tiller had been singled out by Bill O’ Reilly as “Tiller the Baby Killer” and mentioned him 28 times on his top-rated program. After Tiller was gunned down by Scott Roeder, O’Reilly expressed his sympathy–for his own demagoguery and Fox News’ demonetization of Tiller:

When I heard about Tiller’s murder, I knew pro-abortion zealots and Fox News haters would attempt to blame us for the crime, and that’s exactly what has happened. […]

No backpedaling here, madam [Mary Mapes]. Unlike you, I report honestly. Every single thing we said about Tiller was true, and my analysis was based on those facts. […]

Now, it’s clear that the far left is exploiting — exploiting — the death of the doctor. Those vicious individuals want to stifle any criticism of people like Tiller. That — and hating Fox News — is the real agenda here. Finally, if these people are soooo compassionate — so very compassionate, so concerned for the rights and welfare of others — maybe they might have written something, one thing, about the 60,000 fetuses that will never become American citizens. Or am I wrong?

O’Reilly was wrong but no high-profile Republican calling him out for being wrong.

Be clear on this: I am blaming the far-Right, the right-wing noise machine and the Republican Party’s craven opportunism and pandering to the anti-abortion zealots in general and the mendacity of Carly Fiorina specifically. So-called “Democrats” and “liberals” who had nothing to say about the GOP’s propaganda then are useless enabling dupes with nothing of relevance to say now that people are dead.

You can’t play footsie with sort of fanaticism the way Republicans have and then claim it has nothing to do with anything when some nut takes fighting words and turns them into bloody action.

Denial of the pro-life militancy poison the Republicans have injected into the American body politics supersedes any claim of supposed liberal bona fides. Is it polarizing and impolitic to say the Republican Party has enabled and all but abetted this sort of bloody violence against abortion providers and Planned Parenthood? Sure it is, but so is the rhetoric spewed by the GOP for a long time now and if that didn’t honk off these so-called “liberals”, I could not care less if they don’t like it being said.

The Republicans love to bang on President Obama for not using the term “Radical Islam” in response to international terrorism. When the Republicans call what Robert Dear did in Colorado Springs an act of domestic terrorism, they’ll have a point instead of just a talking point.

The timidity of politicians and the refusal of citizens to call this act of violence by its rightful name: domestic terrorism is denying what happens here in the United States is the same damned thing as what happens on distant shores. A day has passed since the attack in Colorado Springs and only two out of 14 GOP presidential candidates have responded to the shootings, so if before gets offended I’ve namechecked the Republican Party, save some of that righteous wrath on the men and woman who want to be your next Commander-in-Chief yet have nothing to say when yet another city becomes a killing field.

Chances Robert Dear was part of some armed anti-abortion resistance like The Army of God are small, but even if he was the latest in a never-ending series of “lone wolves” hard to detect and harder to stop that should be worrisome to all sides of the abortion argument.

As a writer and journalist, I know how much words mean.  Words matter and words like “baby-killer” and “abortion mill” only polarize.  They can’t facilitate reasoned discussion, but they can push an already mentally unstable person to pick up a gun and go off on a mission to kill the baby killers and when one political party specializes in that sort of hate speech they own the consequences of the chaos it creates.

The passivity of consensus-seeing liberals in the face of concerted conservative enabling of ferocious anti-abortion extremism has not and will not elevate the debate to a higher plane of civility. It’s only abandoning women–and mostly poor women–to the non-existent mercies of maniacs like Robert Dear.

Another city. Another rampage. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

Another city. Another rampage. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

The reproductive rights of women are literally under attack from anti-abortion fanatics enabled and abetted by the Republican Party. That may not pleasant to read, but it’s far less harmful to the ego than a crazed gunman’s bullets are to the body of a cop, client or staff of an abortion clinic. Republican lawmakers have done all they can to limit, prohibit, restrict and legislate abortion out of existence until they get another Supreme Court justice in place to outlaw it entirely. By this time next year they may well be in position to do just that.

The ramifications of a Republican president returning to the Oval Office is too slow and uncertain for the domestic terrorists who don’t want to wait. The radical extremists targeting abortion providers are hoping their atrocities will be minimized and marginalized as nothing more than one nut’s unhinged act of violence. The Left loves to pin a Good Conduct medal on their shirt for being on the “right” side of women’s issues, but when it comes to putting any teeth to the talk, they opt not to offend the Republicans who have fed this Frankenstein monster since Roe v. Wade.

Liberals and Democrats are selling women out under the vain hope by not being blunt about the enablers Republicans have been to abortion extremist they are going to move them to a more moderate middle ground on abortion and all that is doing is getting people killed. This is the flip side of the argument conservatives have so successfully made against the Left over international terrorism but they aren’t anywhere as reticent about hurting the feelings of liberals and Democrats.

If You’re Ready for Hillary She’s Ready for You.

Give a big hand for the little lady.

 

Having lived in the public spotlight for so many years and being accused of being everything from a closeted lesbian to a murderer, taking swings at the Hillary Punching Bag has a fun activity for her opponents since the early Nineties. That is not to say there isn’t more to know about Clinton including more stuff she doesn’t want us to know, but there isn’t a candidate living who hasn’t had her past scrutinized as closely as Hillary Rodham Clinton and the opposition research folders runneth over already.

She wouldn’t bother running if she wasn’t ready for all the guns that will be trained on her, but that’s nothing new.  Even if there’s no one like Barack Obama in 2008 waiting in the wings to deny her the party nomination (and there isn’t), Clinton is the most formidable candidate in either party running.  She’s setting the pace and everyone is trying to keep up with it.

There’s a chance Jim Webb, Joe Biden, Marty O’Malley, Bernie Sanders or Lincoln Chafee steps up to the mic and throws down with Hillary in an epic rap battle. Not much of a chance, mind you.   As for Jeb Bush, Rand Paul, Macro Rubio and all the rest of the crew in the Republican Clown Car, they have to fight it out among themselves first before they can step up to take down Clinton.

In some ways it works  to the benefit of the Republicans all the buzz is on their side with the scrum they’re about to engage in. After all, they are the ones whom have been out of the White House for eight years.   They need to convince the American people to step on the lot and test drive all the shiny new models on display in the showroom and their best sales pitch is do you really want the 2016 Hillary that hasn’t changed a thing besides swapping out the CD player for an iPod?

The front-runner is 19 months away from the finish line.

 

Already Clinton is being beaten up because she’s not the warmest woman in the world.  Likability is an overrated trait in politics.  It’s more important to have a president who can handle the forest fires big and small that come across their desk every day instead of whether  they’re a good guy to tip back a beer with.   If Clinton comes off as stiff and unapproachable, that’s not a deal-breaker for me.   An aloof Hillary is better than a friendly Ted Cruz.

As far as not being tested if she doesn’t receive a credible primary challenger, the only bad aspect for Hillary is it allows the Republicans to  attack relentlessly.   While they are all taking free shots at Clinton, she has to choose between reacting and responding or try to ignore it until the GOP finds their hitman to send after her.   It’s the Republicans who will get to set the parameters of the debate in the general election if Clinton sits back and plays defense.

In the 19 months between now and November 2016, the men and women running for president will be asked many questions. Some smart ones, some silly ones, some stupid ones.   Here is one anybody who wants the job should have to answer.

We have Osama bin Laden’s home address. We know he’s going to be there, but we can’t send in the Navy Seals, Delta Force or The Expendables. It’s too dangerous. We need to take him out with a drone, but there are women and children in the house with bin Laden and if we take him out we’re going to take them out too.

We’ve waited for years for this opportunity. We miss him now and we might have to wait years more before we get this opportunity again.

Mr. (or Mrs.) President, what are your orders?

Anyone who wants the job of being the President of the United States who isn’t ready to say, “Take him out,” is instantly disqualified and should be kept as far away from the Oval Office as possible.

Peek-a-boo! Hillary sees you!

Every man who’s ever been president has had to choose those whom get to live and those who have to die then deal with the consequences of their actions.   It’s cool if want your president to be someone could borrow your lawn mower and you wouldn’t have to bang on their door to get it back, but be sure you choose one who can also be the biggest, coldest bastard in the world if the situation calls for it.

There is little doubt Hillary Clinton could give the order.  She and Bill might have looked like peace and love hippies in the day, but on the global stage, she’s no latte-slurping Lefty.

It’s not that’s she is too old, or overly aggressive/ambitious, or entitled or too scandal-plagued, or electing her would effectively be Obama’s third term.  The best argument to be made against another Clinton as president is “What’s so different about Hillary in 2016 than 2008?”

If Hillary can’t win that argument she loses.

The Last Democrat Standing

Down? Yep. Out? Nope.

 

Hey, Democrats! Let this be a lesson to you. If you run like a coward don’t cry when you get shot in the back. Run away from Barack Obama. Refuse to say whether you even voted for him like Alison Lundgren Grimes before Mitch McConnell turned her into so much yard waste. Deny, dodge, and fake it all the way to Election Day, but it won’t save an extraordinary putrid crop of nominal Democratic candidates from humiliation. The waxing the Democrats received from the Republicans was the voters saying, “We see through your act.”

Grimes lost to McConnell which is fine by me.  Better a committed enemy like McConnell in your face than a sometime ally like Grimes quivering behind your back.

It’s hard to see it now crawling from the wreckage, but this doesn’t have to be a bad thing for the Dems. This should be a teachable moment. Whatever your strategy was, whatever the consultants and the pollsters and the experts told you would work but clearly didn’t, whatever delusion you labored under telling a dude who won two presidential elections to stay the hell away from you because he’s suddenly a loser, it’s over now.

Say what you want about the Republicans. Say they hate science and reason and logic and plain ol’ common sense. Say what they’re for anyone with an I.Q. higher than a cold glass of water should be able to see is nothing but rank bullshit designed with only helping the wealthy and corporations. Say they deep french kiss extremists, racists, homophobes, rape advocates, environmental terrorists, war monger, dictators, arms merchants, tax cheats, vigilantes, xenophobes, gun nuts, and religious fanatics.

Say whatever you want but don’t say the Republicans don’t stand for something even if that something is horrible.

I hate your guts and you hate mine but we both hate Obama.

Mr. Cruz and Mr. McCain don’t like each other, but both despise Obama.

 

What do the Democrats believe in? Besides believing they just got their asses kicked?   Act like swine and you get butchered with the hogs.

At some point after another of these Democratic debacles, liberals and progressives (no, they are not the same) are going to wise up to what conservatives already know: political parties are a vehicle and it’s not the masses but the ideologues who offer the direction it goes in. If you want some real Left-wing politicians whom really believe in liberal politics, then you’re going to have to fight your way in, kick the party bosses and detached from reality dinosaurs out and stop being afraid of calling yourself an upper-case “L” for “Liberal” because its going to piss off talk radio and Fox News.

As long as your enemy defines you and you don’t define yourself, you’re playing their game and its a game that can’t be won. They hold all the cards and all the Democrats are doing is gasping for air like a beached whale.

Ma Pelosi and Pa Reid have got to go!

 

Now the Republicans are the dominant force in American politics, I’d like to take this opportunity to both extend both a “congratulations” as well as “welcome back.” Welcome back to the role of participating in the political process, a role the GOP abdicated on January 20, 2009 when Barack Hussein Obama was sworn in as the 44th President of the United States.

The Republicans opted out of their historic role as the opposition party and instead opted in for aggressive open hostility toward the newly elected president as they denied him both respect and cooperation as they ignored Obama’s initiatives, blocked his nominees, sniped, sneered and took every cheap shot they could at every turn.

The lesson for the Republicans is to hide how far to the Right you really are. Talk about how much you love your family while soft music plays real pretty in the background and how you’re committed to building strong communities, safe schools, being a watchdog for the middle class and their money while hiding you’re a sock puppet for money and power and just how deeply up your ass the hand of the Koch Brothers goes. And it works! Being bastards pays off.
But that’s politics. Don’t play if you can’t stand losing. The GOP has had six years of sitting on the sidelines, but that doesn’t mean they’ve done nothing. They laid back in the cut hatching schemes and making plans. There’s a reason the stock market soared today. For Big Business happy days are here again, Whatever nominal resistance Obama and the Democrats offered to their plans has been brushed aside.

The Republicans have a window of opportunity and it will only be open for a short time before the 2016 presidential elections. With a solid grip on the House (because gerrymandering works too!) and the Democrats in the Senate reduced to trying the same foot-dragging cockblocking tactics Mitch McConnell and company pulled off so successfully, they are going to ram so much legislation thru and on President Obama’s desk he’s going to be swamped under a series of bad bills he won’t possibly be able to veto them all.

Oh, for sure, Obama’s going to need a shitload of Bics to put his “HELL TO THE NAW!” on the trash McConnell and John “Agent Orange” Boehner are going to send up 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, but he’s got no allies, no good will build up and no help coming.

McConnell meeting with President Barack Obama.

“Nothing personal Mr. President, but I’m going to make your life hell for the next two years.”

Obama is The Last Democrat Standing. He’s marginalized, surrounded by enemies and all empty on friends. Now might be a good time to start working on his post-presidency memoirs and he might want to skip the State of the Union address for the next two years. It’s not as though he’s gonna get anything done.

Still, there’s no reason for Obama to act as though the GOP has a national mandate.   As the president pointed out  in his post-election press conference only two-thirds of voters bothered going to the polls.   Obama’s refusal to bow down to the Republicans was pounced upon by the pundits as proof that the president still wasn’t getting how discontented the American people are with him.   Despite the overwhelming losses, the side effect of Republicans taking control of Congress may free Obama to be more bold and less passive as his presidency winds down.

Going forward, the Democratic brain trust (is there such a thing?) will try to shake off the shellacking they took and try in 2016 to rally around a presidential candidate not named Obama. Good luck with that. While Hillary Clinton is the preemptive front-runner because neither Elizabeth Warren (too green) or Joe Biden (too goofy) can win, the evil mind of Karl Rove and other Republican mad geniuses are already preparing traps for her even Jigsaw from the Saw movies couldn’t dream up.

I want the Republicans to do well.  Not because they’re going to do anything for me, but if  they enjoy some success, maybe that would frighten the Democrats to rebuilds, reinvents, reinvigorate and revitalizes itself  and finds a way to winning  in non -presidential years

One more thing: Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi should both be voted out of their leadership roles by their shriveled caucuses and immediately resign from Congress They’re old, obsolete and in the way.   For the Dems to move into the future they need to shake off the dead hand of the past.

Related articles

 

 

Here Comes the Pain

If you ain’t one of Us, you must be one of Them and we don’t like Them.

I was in the lunchroom trying to eat my soup before it got cold.   A pretty young woman who is a political junkie as much as I am smiled an even prettier smile and asked me oh-so-sweetly, “Jeff, do you think there’s any chance the Democrats can win in Ohio in November?”

I could have gone into the gory details at excruciating length, but I kept it short.  “Not a hope in hell.”   Her smile flipped over into a frown.   I didn’t want to dash her hopes, but I couldn’t lie either.

The  suffering is nearly over for the Democrats.  They knew going into 2014 with the sour mood of the voters and the uncanny ability of the Republicans to successfully make all the Democrats fault, they are  standing on the eve of a major wipe-out in November.   The pain is coming and blood will flow with the President and his party on the receiving end of most of it.

Though I’m on the Do Not Call registry, I get hit up by the Democrats for campaign cash because I’ve given in the past.  I get a call tonight for some kid trying to support Democratic candidates for governor and he starts reading from his script.

“Good evening sir, there’s good news for Democrats.  Our candidates for governor are up or close in several states.  Charlie Crist is leading Rick Scott in Florida.   Mary So-and-So is tied with Scott Walker in Wisconsin.   Democrats are on the move, but we need your generous support.”

“That’s GOVERNOR Douche to you!”

I interrupted the kid’s feel-good, happy talk before he could get to the part where I’m supposed to drag out my credit card and send him $50 bucks.  “Well, that’s great for you guys in Florida and Wisconsin, but I live in Ohio and here in Ohio the zombie running for governor is losing to John Kasich by 20 points.   If Kasich died between now and November, they could run Kasich’s dog against Ed FitzGerald and still win by double-digits.”  You could melt steel with the acidic disdain dripping from my lips.

Dead silence.  Sadly for this poor kid nobody prepped him in dealing with an irritated contributor.  He tried to regroup and continue the sales pitch of fairy dust and unicorns pooping rainbows, but I wasn’t trying to hear any of that noise and shut him down quick.”

“Look, I know you’re just trying to do you job and raise some money for the Democrats, but you’re not going to get me to believe things are all sweetness and light,” I said.   “The Democrats aren’t even trying in my state and when FitzGerald goes down in flames next month he’s going to take the whole ticket of other candidates down with him.  They are going to go down hard and lose big.”

It didn’t have to be this way.

Two years ago when President Obama was running for reelection,  I couldn’t go more than a day or so without somebody from the campaign calling, emailing or knocking on the door making sure they got out the vote and more importantly got the base fired up to vote.   Now here we stand less than a month away from an election that will decide the balance of power in Congress as well as statehouses across the nation and the blase indifference of the Democrats is frankly stunning to behold.  Nobody’s knocked on my door.  I barely see any yard signs.  Only the Republicans seem to have bought any commercial time to tell me how wonderful life is since Kasich became governor.   What’s the response from the other side?   Damned if I know.   They aren’t even making enough of an effort to even be considered embarrassing.

It’s as though the Dems have resigned themselves to getting worked by the Repubs.  Yeah, we’re gonna get bitch-slapped.   Going over the cliff.   Driving down a dark country road at midnight with no headlights.  Playing Russian Roulette with five bullets in the chamber.  No sense trying to fight fate.

There’s no shame in losing.  The shame is in not even trying to win.  If the Democrats have a plan to avoid being humbled and humiliated  it will take a far better political prognosticator than I to figure out what it is.

I don’t see any effort.  I don’t feel any sense of urgency.   I don’t have any feeling the Democrats are going to pull off a last minute save and deny the Republicans almost complete control.

The Republicans moved me out of the White House into a warehouse.

And they have plans for you and you and me too.   Lots of plans, and all of you who didn’t care today will care a lot tomorrow and tomorrow and the tomorrow after that.    If you’re a woman they have plans for your reproductive organs.  If you’re in a labor union they got plans to bust unions.   If you’re unemployed don’t look for any extensions of benefits.   If you’re a college student you’ve got no relief coming from those student loans.   If you’re Black there’s more prisons and less affirmative action coming your way.   If you’re gay they’re coming to shut down that marriage equality stuff.   There are lots of folks who are going to get what’s coming to them and the GOP is going to give it to them good and hard.

Sometimes shit has to get really bad before it can get any better and trust me when I say this:  when there’s nothing between the plans of the Koch Brothers and ALEC and all those other incredibly wealthy, incredibly greedy and incredibly vindictive bastards whom have been patiently waiting and plotting and planning for this moment, oh, what you got coming!

Just you wait…

Bow Down Before the One You Serve

You don’t see President Obama publicly lose his famous cool, but there was no mistaking his anger at the stinging defeat handed to him and the majority of the public who wanted to see even a watered down bill mandating stronger background checks for guns.    Unfortunately, 46 Senators chose to heed the call of their NRA masters over preventing more Newtown, Aurora and Tuscon shooting sprees.

And Obama was appropriately pissed off about it.

“Families that know unspeakable grief summoned the courage to petition their elected leaders not just to honor the memory of their children but to protect the lives of all of our children,” the president said,  A few minutes ago a minority in the United States Senate decided it wasn’t worth it.”

“All in all this was a pretty shameful day for Washington,”  a frustrated Obama said.

Among those shameful cowards were four gutless wonders laughingly called Democrats, all from conservative red states and three up for reelection next year.   The Senate voted 54-46 to scrap a proposal by Senators Joe Manchin (D-W.VA) and Pat Toomey (R-PA), that was both modest and somewhat watered down, but even that was too much for the gun lobby.   They pulled the chain and four Democrats (Max Baucus, Mark Pryor, Mark Begich and Heidi Heitkamp) side with the majority of Republicans to send the bill down to defeat.   This was a tough vote for Democrats running for reelection in conservatives states, but Sen. Kay Hagen and Sen. Mary Landrieu found a way to get behind the Manchin-Toomey compromise.

Trying to do something in a do-nothing Congress.

Trying to do something in a do-nothing Congress.

Even if the four Democrats found the balls to join with the president and their party, the vote would have still fallen short by two votes of the margin needed to get to the stupid 60-vote super majority necessary to pass it.    But the defection of the four Democrats still stung.

I placed calls to five of the U.S. Senators who bowed down to their NRA masters and stood against the will of the American people by opposing gun background checks.

Senator Portman’s office (R-OH) took my call and so did Sen. Heidi Heitkamp, one of the four Democrats that voted with the GOP. Senators Max Baucus and Mark Beigich’s phone lines were either jammed or their voice mails full. I left a message for Sen. Mark Pryor expressing my disappointment and disgust. All three are up for reelection in 2014 and not a one of them will see a dime from me in campaign contributions.

Profiles in Cowardice

Profiles in Cowardice

Collectively,  all four of them  can go to hell but first they can fail next year in their reelection bids.   What’s that you say?   Am I going to support Republicans over Democrats in 2014.   Highly unlikely.  I would  simply prefer to have these cowards  go down in  flames.  I would rather have a Republican I know I can’t trust than a cowardly Democrat with no spine, no heart and no balls.

I will only make my campaign contributions directly to the campaigns of the candidate.   The DSCC can go screw and when they ask me why Baucus, Begich and Pryor are dead to me i won’t hesitate to tell them my reasons.

I would prefer to deal with a real Republican than a fake Democrat.  I will not compromise my principles any longer for the sake of political expediency or misplaced party loyalty.   When it serves their purposes the Democrats use fear of Republican extremism as a scare tactic for ignoring the wishes of their constituents.   While I’m lining up asses to kick, I can’t forget most useless politician in Washington,  the craven Harry Reid,  who rejected the opportunity for filibuster reform out of a deluded sense of Senate congeniality.  Yeah, Harry,  weak and wimpy Democrats in Name Only like you do not deserve my support  either.

They won’t get it any longer. The Democratic Party is simply a vehicle for liberalism. It is not liberalism and we need all to get over the notion liberalism lives and dies based on the fortunes of the Democratic Party.

As for Heidi Heitkamp, I  invite her to go ahead and cross the aisle and caucus with Ted Cruz if she’s going to vote with him.

There is a lesson to be learned here and it’s that the fear of defeat moves more votes than the courage to do the right thing and most senators are more cautious than they are brave.   This should remind the Left what they shouldn’t forget:  The Democrats Need Liberals More Than Liberals Need the Democrats.    What Baucus, Begich, Pryor and Heitkamp  understand is fear and they need to have the fear of God put into their empty little hearts.

When the DINOs fear their own constituents more than the lobbies and possible challengers that’s when they will really start voting to protect their interests.    We are not at the day yet.

Boosting Barack: Yeah, They Built That.

Game recognizes Game.

Going into their convention, Democrats had a disadvantage the Republicans did not.   The GOP base is fired up to vote against Obama.  The Democrats need to get theirs fired up to vote for Obama.    The advantage Democrats have  is it is easier to get people to vote for someone than against them.   But too much of the Democratic base hasn’t been engaged thus far in the president’s reelection and that could imperil it.

Michelle Obama and Bill Clinton delivered show-stopping speeches to set it up for  President Obama to make the case  he deserves four more years.   The speculation was which Clinton would show up in Charlotte.  Would it be Bad Bill looking to stick a shiv in the back of the guy who blocked his wife’s bid for his old job or Good Bill rallying the faithful to help Obama join him and Harry Truman as the only  Democratic incumbents to win a second term since FDR?

It  took 48 minutes for him to say it,  but Clinton left no doubt he’s all in with Team Obama and squash any speculation he wasn’t.   Obama and Clinton have had a prickly relationship, but with his ringing endorsement of the embattled president and shredding of the Republicans,  Clinton is poised to become a significant asset to Obama’s campaign.

Michelle Obama’s job was tougher than the one Clinton had.  He had to say the things about the opposition in the way a former president can that a current one can’t.   Bill had to draw the distinctions between Obama and the Republicans.   Michelle had to reach out to disillusioned and disappointed Democrats to remind them, yes, there is are good reasons to show up and vote for her husband.

The Big Dog and the First Mom share a moment.

More than a few amateur psychologists such as D’nesh D’Souza have attempted to put the president on the couch trying to figure out why he hates America so much.  He doesn’t, but they are too full of hate for him to realize it.   With the First Lady, they can’t question her “Americaness” so they hit on her as being “angry.”   The go-to move for right-wingers too lazy or too stupid (or both) to understand the Obamas is to write him off as uppity and her as angry.

Stereotyping Michelle is a way to minimize her intellect and beauty.  She has been hammered by her critics as snobbish, materialistic, bossy and nosing into the dietary habits of American’s children.   It’s amazing how low they will go not to take Michelle seriously.   She has more grace, charm and smarts in one finger than most of the haters do in their entire flabby bodies.

She is also thought of as being the true liberal in the marriage or at least more than her husband.  That’s a sentiment shared by Salon’s Joan Walsh:

 There are Democrats who believe Michelle Obama carries the torch for liberalism, and reminds her husband what he came to Washington to do, when his Beltway advisers may be telling him something different. Tuesday night she spoke to those Democrats, who may not be as enthusiastic or optimistic as they were in 2008. She told them she loves her husband even more than she did four years ago, because of all that he’s done for the country – and maybe helped them to love him a little more, too.

All the professional and amateur “fact-checkers” will comb through every last word of their speeches looking for exaggerations, half-truths, and outright lies of a Paul Ryan level, but a fact is not the same as the truth and what Michelle Obama  said about character and what Bill Clinton said about the economy Obama inherited was the gospel truth.

The First Lady said, “I have seen firsthand that being president doesn’t change who you are – it reveals who you are.”

President Clinton said“President Obama started with a much weaker economy than I did. No President – not me or any of my predecessors could have repaired all the damage in just four years.

Today is the last night of the Democratic National Convention with Joe Biden and Obama himself ringing down the curtain with perhaps the two most important speeches of their political lives.  What they say doesn’t have to be as good as what Bill and Michelle said,  but it would go a long ways to waking up the base if it’s every bit as good

If the Democrats don’t come out of their convention energized and mobilized to send Mitt back to one of his six homes it won’t be because the Big Dog and the First Lady didn’t do their part.

Motivation?  Yeah.  They built that.

The First Lady killed in Charlotte.