The Terminal Stage of Obama Derangement Syndrome

“Here’s your new office, Mr. President. Sen. McConnell picked it out just for you.”

There’s a vacancy on the Supreme Court.    It’s President Obama’s job to send up a nominee to the U.S. Senate to fill it.   Mitch McConnell and his gang of thugs  say, “Hell no, they can’t go!”

The Republicans have made it clear they do not want a moderate, a middle-of-the-roader, a safe choice, or an acceptable alternative. They want Rush Limbaugh or someone further to the Right of him and nothing less than this is acceptable and even that might not be enough. What if Clinton or Sanders wins the presidency? Is McConnell and crew going to say, “Okay, we’ve got a new president. Send over a nominee.

The Republicans have the House and the Senate and hope to sweep the trifecta with taking the White House back too. Their reasons for keeping Scalia’s seat vacant are twofold: they don’t want to foreclose the possibility of a Republican president picking the next nominee or deny themselves the pleasure of sticking it to Obama one more time.

Why would Obama not make a nomination? The President is a scholar of Constitutional law. He knows what his responsibilities are. McConnell knows what his responsibilities are too, but only one player in this game is trying to change the rules.

If Scalia has died in October or November, McConnell might have a point. There are eight months until Election Day and the Senate Republicans can’t claim they’re too overworked to fit in a confirmation hearing. They just don’t want to allow this president to select the next Supreme Court justice.

“Y’know, you’re even uglier in person, Mitch.” “Thanks, Barack and I just farted.”

That, Mr. and Mrs. America, is obstructionism. No finessing or tap-dancing around it and anyone who thinks GOP opposition to replacing Scalia will magically melt away on January 20, 2017 if President Hillary Clinton or President Bernie Sanders takes the Oath of Office is on crack.

Since Republicans don’t understand the Constitution, what else do they want Obama to punt until the next president arrives? If a shooting war breaks out imperiling American interests, does McConnell want Obama to stand down until a Republican replaces him? If the economy starts to crater, should Obama go golfing and leave the mess for the next guy or gal to clean up?

The president may be in the last year of his presidency, but despite the inability of Republicans to read the Constitution or a calendar, he’s still the only president they got.

McConnell is still trying to undo the results of the 2012 election and this is his last chance to do so. He’s misreading the situation. The GOP has more Senate seats to defend in blue states than do the Democrats. Lose control of the Senate as well as the White House going to Clinton or Sanders, and a nominee further to the Left than what Obama might offer up becomes a near-certainty. Say “good-bye” to overturning Roe v. Wade and say “hello” to the end of Citizens United–especially if Hillary Clinton gets the nod.

The stance taken by the Republicans is historical. We’ve never seen anything like it in American politics. Contentious arguments over Supreme Court nominees is nothing new. Refusing to even consider a nominee no matter how qualified they may be out of malice and spite is.   McConnell and his mob really do not seem to grasp we already have a President of the United States and they have NO valid excuse which passes legal, political, or Constitutional muster to deny giving Obama’s nominee a hearing. It’s simply a naked power grab, plain and simple.

I DEMAND you stop the Black guy from replacing me!”

Let’s be honest here: The Republicans don’t want to see their most-favorite Supreme Court justice’s replacement chosen by their least-favorite Chief Executive. This is all about jamming up Barack Obama and denying his legitimacy as the president one more time.

In our hyper-partisan age, it’s no mystery why the Republicans are doing what they are doing. I don’t even really care if they use their numerical superiority in the Senate to vote down Obama’s nominee. That would be fair and every Democrat and/or liberal would have to recognize when you lose an election it has consequences and this is one of them.

But when the Republicans lost the 2008 and 2012 elections that has its consequences too, and one of them it is Barack Obama–not his successor–who has both the duty and Constitutional right to choose a nominee to replace Antonin Scalia and all the rest of this is just noise obscuring the signal

The hatred and disrespect of this president by the Republicans has reached a new low in Obama Derangement Syndrome and it should cost them dearly.

Help Wanted at The Supreme Court

Gone, gone, gone. Done moved on.

It’s an election year and everything that comes out of Washington has political calculation written all over it. Hell, Antonin Scalia wasn’t dead a day before Mitch McConnell proclaimed no nominee of the president would be confirmed no matter how qualified. they may be.

McConnell said, “The American people‎ should have a voice in the selection of their next Supreme Court Justice. Therefore, this vacancy should not be filled until we have a new President.”

The distinguished senior senator from Kentucky is totally full of shit.

The American people expressed their voice in the selection of the next Supreme Court Justice in 2012 when they reelected Barack Hussein Obama as President. We already have a President in place. We don’t have to wait until January 20, 2017 to fill the vacancy left by Antonin Scalia’s demise.

The Senate has no reason not to fill the vacancy expect for political ones.    You know, like the one where the Republicans hate Obama’s guts?

The President should place before the U.S. Senate a nominee on Monday–President’s Day–and DEMAND they give his nominee a hearing and a up-or-down vote by the Senate.

Oh, I know McConnell won’t give a Obama nominee that vote and Obama knows it too. The president can’t make the Senate do anything. But he can make them sweat bullets for stonewalling his nominee. Nothing will prove to the American people how obstructionist the Republicans are than denying President Obama the right to exercise the Constitutional authority that is his and his alone.

Obama should call bullshit on McConnell, roll up his sleeves and go hard for his replacement for Scalia.   In the last months of his presidency pretty much the only thing Obama can do besides the daily ceremonial stuff is unleash hell on a “do-nothing Senate” that is stonewalling a qualified nominee.   This would be an excellent time for Obama to nominate a  Black or Latino jurist with exemplary credentials and dare the GOP to deny them Scalia’s empty seat.

Thus, with Scalia’s death, the vital importance of who gets to choose who sits on the nation’s federal and the Supreme Court, is refocused with laser-beam intensity. Now more than ever “who chooses?” will be a critical consideration for the American voters in November.

"Tony, in about 30 years you'll be dead and a Black guy in this office will pick your replacement."

“Tony, in about 30 years you’ll be dead and a Black guy in this office will pick your replacement.”

If McConnell wants to give Obama and the Democrats the rope to which to hang Kelly Ayotte, Mark Kirk, Rob Portman, and other GOP incumbents facing tough reelections in the fall, they’ll happily accept that gift. It will make sure McConnell’s one term-and-done as the Majority Leader, and passing the gavel over to Chuck Schumer so he can stonewall a President Rubio or Trump’s nominee. We could be looking at a long wait until there are nine Justices on the Supreme Court.

I know he won’t but I wish Obama would nominate a committed, unapologetic, true progressive to replace Scalia.    The question is would Bernie Sanders take the job?

I know he won’t but I wish Obama would nominate a committed, unapologetic, true progressive to replace Scalia. The question is would Bernie Sanders take the job?

Fact is, since there’s nobody Obama can nominate the Senate Republicans won’t block, why half-step with a “confirmable centrist?” There has to be a liberal jurist with impeccable legal credentials, pedigree and accomplishments under their belt, so why not? Send them a nominee who deserves a hearing and when McConnell and company throw up their mealy-mouthed bullshit excuses about “letting the American people have their say” pointedly remind them they had their say in 2012 when Obama won the election despite McConnell’s declaration nothing was more important than making sure Obama was a one-term president.

scalia_racist_credo_lp
There’s nothing much dramatic President Obama can do in these last months of his presidency beyond his daily ceremonial duties. Filling a Supreme Court vacancy is one of the most important jobs any president has and since this one in now in official legacy mode, he should fight like hell and go ballistic on the Republican Senate. Obama can lose and probably will lose this fight, but it’s a fight well worth the waging. Nothing less than the balance of power of the High Court hinges on it.

Passivity and retreat are not an option. President Obama should send a Supreme Court nominee to the Senate and then scorch the earth to fight for their confirmation.

I’m sending this quote to the President from a great progressive, the late Sen. Paul Wellstone, “If we don’t fight hard enough for the things we stand for, at some point we have to recognize that we don’t really stand for them.

I don’t want another squishy centrist or mushy moderate. I want President Obama to nominate someone like Leah Ward Sears, the former Chief Justice of Georgia and the first African-American Chief Justice in the United States. Let him nominate someone like Sears and dare the Republicans to deny her a confirmation vote.

As for the late Antonin Scalia himself, it has been said if you can’t say anything good then say nothing at all and I got nothing to say.

What? Too soon?

What? Too soon?

Don’t Believe the Superhype

"I left my Dab in San Francisco..."

Sorry. There is no dabbing in the Super Bowl.

The only thing we like in America more than celebrating our winners is tearing apart our losers. We wildly cheer them one week when they thrill us and we boo them without mercy the next when they do trip up and do a face plant.

Cam Newton smiled and threw touchdowns and dabbed and danced his way to a Superhype Bowl. Then a funny thing happened. He essentially wet the bed in front of 111 million people.

Superhype Bowl 50 did likewise. Two teams clenching, grappling, and throwing half-hearted pokes at each other (at least both the offenses were pretty anemic) until someone screwed up in a way their defense couldn’t cover for their ineffectual asses.

How bad were the Panthers and Broncos on offense? This bad.

The Panthers had 21 first downs. The Broncos had 11.
The Panthers converted on 3 of 14 third downs. The Broncos on 1 of 14.
Cam Newton and Peyton Manning tasted the tacky, torn-up turf of Levi Stadium a combined 12 times in sacks.
The two teams fumbled seven times losing four of them.
Both quarterbacks threw more interceptions (1 each) than touchdowns (none).
Both quarterbacks combined for slightly over 300 net yards passing which is pretty awful in Roger’s Goodell’s pass-crazy NFL.
The two teams punted 15 times.

That’s some lousy football, folks.

Didn't do much to win it. Just didn't too much to lose it.

Didn’t do much to win it. Just didn’t too much to lose it.

The Panthers lost ugly and the Broncos won ugly and everyone still had to go to work the next day. The game was bad and the commercials were bad and Coldplay was really bad. Where’s so super about that?

Cam Newton led the Carolina Panthers to a 17-1 record going into Super Bowl 50. Then for the next 60 minutes he played like shit and now those 17 wins before that second loss don’t count?

Newton didn’t lose the Super Bowl. Not by himself though it’s his contributions which will be scrutinized without pity or mercy. He fucked up over under sideways down, but the hammering the Panthers took on Sunday night in San Francisco? That was a team loss.

Newton didn’t play well enough but Jonathan Stewart and the running backs didn’t run well enough and Ted Ginn, Jerrico Cothcery, Greg Olsen and the receivers didn’t catch enough passes. Graham Gano shanked a makeable field goal. The offensive tackles couldn’t block a busload of angry nuns let alone DeMarcus War and Von Miller who regularly snatched the jocks of Mike “Turnstile” Remmers and Michael “Don’t Put Me On The Blindside” Oher on their way to smash Newton again.

Head coach Ron Rivera fussed and cussed and wasted his red flag challenges and pretty much stood on the sidelines looking like a man who just knew he had left his wallet in the toilet before the National Anthem. Offensive coordinator Mike Shula had no clue what to do to keep Cam from getting creamed because whoever the offensive line coach is hadn’t told him before leaving the stadium at halftime and was updating his resume on Linkedin in a cab on his way to the airport.

After the game Manning shamelessly plugged Budweiser and denied CBS an announcement that this was indeed his last rodeo which indeed it needs to be because his right arm has all the strength of a wet noodle. For what his contributions were to the Broncos 24-10 win, there are third-string scrubs on 31 other teams who could eke out a limp stat line of 13 completions on 24 attempts for 141 yards, no touchdowns and one interception.

Please retire, Peyton. You got your 200th win and your second Superhype Bow ring. Now go sit down and hum that horrible Nationwide Insurance theme while you pound down some rancid Papa John’s pizza and wash it down with some nasty-ass Bud. See you in five years when you go into the Hall of Fame.

Go away, Peyton.

I repeat: THERE IS NO DABBING IN THE SUPER BOWL.

I repeat: THERE IS NO DABBING IN THE SUPER BOWL.
As for Cam and the crew, there is no dabbing at the Superhype Bowl. For your immediate future there is only an incoming storm of endless condemnation of how immature you are and how you need to grow up and respect the game.   Oh, and you and your team are a bunch of choking dogs.   They’ll probably remind you of that too.

Shake it off, Cam. If they didn’t like you before, they’re loving how much they get to hate on you now. If success has a thousand fathers and failure is an orphan, you’re all alone in the end zone as you gloomily reflect upon how close you came and how far you still have to go.

This was an unsatisfying end to an extremely satisfying season. Winning 17 games and a league MVP does not suck. The Panthers are young and tough and if the front office is smart, they’ll find some more receivers and some offensive tackles that can roadgrade oncoming linebackers. Put that on your “to do” list, and I guarantee the Panthers will be back in the Superhype Bowl before the Broncos are.

But until then, Newton and the Panthers will hear it loud and hear it loud. Hear it good and don’t forget how it made you feel when you heard it. Then next season, remember those names and make them laugh out of the other side of their mouths along with the split lips and broken teeth.

The Panthers aren’t going to sneak up on anyone next season. Good. When they see you coming with blood in your eyes it will make the ass-whupping you’re bringing with you all the worse.   Let their hate be your fuel.

I hope those Panthers are not playing the 49ers next season. That is, unless they get rid of Colin Kapernick and the Niners run Blaine Gabbert out there. Then I want the Panthers to stomp the cowboy shit out of them.

See you at SB100?

See you at SB100?

The Difference Between a Victim and a Villain

Tamir Rice: Armed and dangerous playing with a toy gun. Had to die.

I read a lot of stuff online.  Some of it is smart and most of it is not.  I read something on a website after last week’s FBI shooting of Robert “LaVoy” Finicum, one of the militia militants who have taken over and occupied the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, now dragging into 33 days with no end in sight.

Finicum’s death has given his fellow extremists the martyr for their anti-government rebellion and one of Finicum’s fellow fanatics, Jason Patrick made a totally insane comparison when he likened Finicum’s death to the killing of Tamir Rice, an unarmed 12-year-old African American boy fatally shot by police outside a Cleveland recreation center in 2014.

“The government can kill who they want for whatever reason they want with impunity,” Patrick said.

An anti-government, gun-toting, wannabee revolutionary crazy man is comparable to what happened to Rice? BULLSHIT!  Finicum was armed with a rife with real shells. Rice had a toy pistol. Rice was blown away by the Cleveland cops within three seconds. Finicum wandered around federal property for 27 days before he was shot while toting a weapon.

I forgot how much Americans love their outlaws and there will always be those who take the side of the outlaws even when they bring their fate down on their own head as one poster did in a forum post.

“And now one of them’s dead. Poor dumb bastard. I get the impression he didn’t want to live, and I wonder how his life went so wrong. Was he reaching for a gun? Damned if I know. I’ve watched the slowed-down aerial shots, and maybe he was just flapping his arms around trying to keep his balance in deep snow. People do that. I’ve done that within the last week, my muscles still remember what it feels like. Maybe at that moment he didn’t mean any more harm than Tamir Rice did. Or maybe he did. But he’d created a situation, blustering and posing, where the guy who shot him had no other choice. I hope the guy who shot him comes to understand that.”

It shouldn’t be necessary to explain Robert “LaVoy” Finicum was a 55-year-old White man armed with a rifle who declared he would rather die than surrender who illegally occupied the refuge for nearly a month while Tamir Rice was a 12-year-old Black boy armed with a toy gun who never had a chance to surrender as he died on a Cleveland playground with three seconds of the police arriving.

Like flies to cow pies, this sort of lawlessness contempt and disdain for any authority whatsoever only encourages more contempt and disdain for the law and authority. Wannabees have been emboldened by the Oregon stand-off and some of them are ready to kill for their twisted beliefs.

The cops and the FBI didn’t start this, but they have guns too and if these snack-swallowing “patriots” want to go out in a blaze of glory, that’s their call.

Finicum abandoned his home and family to sit in the snow and give bullshit press conferences railing against the government. Rice was being a boy doing what boys do in playing with a toy gun. Finicum was an armed militia extremist. Rice was a kid. Finicum proclaimed he was a law-abiding citizen who loved, God, family, and freedom. Rice didn’t hold any press conferences to proclaim what he loved. Pizza, maybe?

Rice was a boy who never had a chance to grow any older. Finicum was a grown man who threw away his chance and there’s one less gun-toting nut in the world.

If someone wanted to compare the fate of Mr. Finicum with that of other anti-government radicals like Gordon Kahl, Randy Weaver, and Timothy McVeigh, that would be a valid comparison. Tamir Rice’s killing has nothing to do with what happened to Finicum. One was murdered where he stood while the other reportedly yelled, “Just shoot me!” and the authorities complied.

Agitating to die is not the same thing as being gunned down without so much as a warning.

No matter how many how many of his fellow armed militia extremists or simple-minded sympathizers try to dig up and co-opt Rice’s corpse and try to compare the death of an innocent boy with the death of a radical extremist, there is zero truth to it. It only cheaply devalues the life of an innocent who was murdered before he ever had a chance to live to make a misanthropic hater who chose suicide-by-cop look a little less crazy.

There’s a world of difference between a victim and a villain. Robert Finicum thought he was a hero. Thought he was a patriot. Thought he could overthrow a government with a rifle. He thought wrong and now he’s dead.

Robert Finicum. Sedition. Armed with a rifle. Giving press conferences for nearly a month.

Robert Finicum. Sedition. Armed with a rifle. Giving press conferences for nearly a month.

Tamir was just a kid in the park who crossed the path of a trigger-happy killer cop who had no business whatsoever with a gun and a badge. They aren’t remotely the same sort of death. They aren’t even remotely on the same planet.

It shouldn’t be necessary to explain this but I’m not surprised it is.