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Friday Talking Points [402] -- A Warning For Complacent Democrats

[ Posted Friday, August 5th, 2016 – 15:28 PDT ]

Friday Talking Points is back! Woo hoo! Well, kind of....

We've spent the past two weeks travelling to and from the Democratic National Convention, but due to the three-week period we've got to cover, we're not even going to attempt to adequately revisit everything that's happened in the political world since our last column.

In fact, we're not even going to write our talking points this week, and we're only briefly going to touch on what's going on and quickly hand out the awards, before we get to a rather extraordinary (and extensive) essay at the end, by guest author Eric Varela.

While attending the Democratic National Convention, it was pretty plain to see that party unity has not quite yet been achieved. Oh, sure, the Republicans are divided as well, but the Democrats still have a lot of dissent and restlessness in their own ranks. Or perhaps "leaving their ranks" might be more accurate. To put this another way, Democrats shouldn't be complacent right now about how all the Bernie Sanders voters will eventually come around and vote for Hillary Clinton. Clinton's up in the polls, but turnout is still a very big question. Which is why Eric's essay is an important message the Clinton campaign needs to hear right now.

But we're getting ahead of ourselves, so let's instead make an attempt to summarize the past few weeks. The best wrapup we've read, from Salon, started off:


In the last two weeks, Donald Trump has slandered the family of a dead soldier, committed treason by inviting Russia to hack Hillary Clinton's email account, admitted he lied about receiving a letter from the N.F.L., saw an Air Force mother get booed at one of his rallies, claimed Russia wouldn't invade Ukraine even though they already have, refused to endorse House Speaker Paul Ryan's candidacy, falsely accused a fire marshal of limiting his crowd for political reasons, tossed a baby out of a rally, and called Hillary Clinton "the devil."

Although admittedly a Herculean attempt to get everything in, astonishingly this even left out some of the Trump-related news. What it missed: Trump accepted a Purple Heart with the tone-deaf statement: "I always wanted to get the Purple Heart. This was much easier." Trump received five draft deferments during the Vietnam War, just for context. Trump also began darkly hinting that if he loses, the election was obviously rigged -- a theme we venture he's going to revisit often in the coming weeks. Also, a Trump crowd booed protesters who were doing nothing more than silently standing holding copies of the Constitution. Republicans booing the Constitution! Who could have ever predicted such a spectacle? Oh, and to top it all off, Trump "saw" another video that doesn't actually exist.

Understandably, many Republicans have now entered full-blown panic mode, as Trump's poll numbers head south not only in the national polls but in most key swing states as well. Hillary Clinton is even beating Donald Trump in a poll from Georgia. That is downright stunning, folks.

Newt Gingrich probably summed up Trump's biggest problem, in one of the many "GOP Is Panicking!" articles which ran last week:

Gingrich said Trump is continuing to operate on instincts that helped him in business and in the primaries but said the GOP nominee doesn't realize that those skills are not adequate for a general election.

"He can't learn what he doesn't know because he doesn't know he doesn't know it," Gingrich said.

That's a positively Rumsfeldian way to put things, but it is entirely accurate. Gingrich hasn't un-endorsed Trump yet, but plenty of others are streaming for the exits. One of the co-authors of the famed "autopsy report" (written by the GOP after Romney's 2012 loss) just quit the Republican Party, in protest of Trump. A Republican House member started running campaign ads promising he'd "stand up to Trump," if it came down to that. Another Republican congressman just went ahead and endorsed Hillary Clinton. So did Marc Racicot, former chair of the Republican National Committee. And the most stunning blow yet, Meg Whitman announced she's not only endorsing Hillary Clinton, she will actually fundraise for Hillary, stating unequivocally: "I will vote for Hillary, I will talk to my Republican friends about helping her, and I will donate to her campaign and try to raise money for her." Reports surfaced during the week of Reince Priebus making an "apoplectic" phone call to Trump (after Trump pointedly refused to endorse Paul Ryan, John McCain, and Kelly Ayotte for re-election). Also there were rumors of a possible "intervention" to be held with Trump, led by Rudy Giuliani, Priebus, and Gingrich. Trump's campaign manager is also rumored to be feeling mighty down in the dumps about his candidate (and the impossibility of controlling Trump's mouth).

So, welcome to the general election season, Republicans! Having second thoughts on your nominee yet? To quote Jedi Master Yoda: "You will be... you will be."

Democrats, during this period, have mostly been lying low and watching the three-ring GOP circus unfold. Some journalists and even members of Congress on the left are now openly questioning Donald Trump's sanity, but for the most part this cake needs no icing from Democrats. It really needs no icing at all, but for those who don't care about their metaphorical blood-sugar level, here you go: Tim Huelskamp, Tea Party House member from Kansas, just got primaried out of a job. Sweet! He even wrote an article whining about his loss in the Washington Post, which is even sweeter (especially if you read the comments to it).

We really only have one more news item to draw attention to, one that hasn't been getting nearly the attention it deserves. In state after state, federal judges have been having a field day throwing out voter restriction laws that were enacted purely to suppress Democratic votes. In fact, every single case that was recently decided was decided against Draconian voter-suppression laws. What this means, in an era with a 4-4 divided Supreme Court, is that even if the highest court takes a look at any of these cases before the election, at worst they'd have a tie vote -- which means that all of the voter-suppression laws will be thrown out for this election cycle. That is good news for minority and senior voters, and it's good news for those who care about not taking even baby steps back towards the era of Jim Crow.

 

Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week

We're stretching the definitions of the awards this week, since they will be covering not "this week," but (much more accurately) "the previous week." Since Democrats have mostly been standing back and watching the fireworks spewing from the Republican campaign this particular week, we instead decided to give the awards based on the performances from last week's Democratic National Convention.

The most impressive speaker at the convention was a pretty easy choice. First Lady Michelle Obama's speech was delivered early, on Monday night, but she set such a high standard that nobody else for the rest of the convention managed to top her. And that's really saying something, because the Democrats (unlike the Republicans) had a solid lineup of people known for the quality of their oratory (such as Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, to name just two).

Three other speakers did get close to hitting the gold standard Michelle set. Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, and Hillary Clinton all gave what we felt were the best speeches of their political careers (and all deserve at least Honorable Mentions for their performances). But we wrote about the primetime speeches in detail earlier, so check that out if you'd like to see how we ranked all the primetime speakers (behind Michelle Obama, that is).

Michelle Obama covered pretty much all the ground a convention speech is supposed to. She covered her own work as First Lady, her husband's legacy, how unqualified and unthinkable the opposite side's candidate is, and why Hillary Clinton is the only possible choice. She checked off all of those boxes in fine style, and more. In fact, she knocked it out of the park in a manner unsurpassed for the entire rest of the convention. If you haven't seen her speech, search it out and watch it -- it is definitely worth your time to do so.

Will Michelle Obama follow in Hillary's footsteps and eventually run for the Senate in Illinois? We certainly hope so. She outdid a whole bunch of professional politicians with the effortless and rousing nature of her speech last week. So it really wasn't even close -- Michelle Obama was hands-down the Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week.

[Congratulate First Lady Michelle Obama via the White House contact page, to let her know you appreciate her efforts.]

 

Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week

There are a number of candidates for the Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week, depending on how you want to define the term.

Senator Elizabeth Warren probably personally disappointed us the most during the convention, because she gave a rather low-energy speech. Granted, she had a very tough speaking slot -- sandwiched between Michelle Obama and Bernie Sanders. Even so, we've heard Warren get a lot feistier before, so her relative calmness was somewhat of a disappointment. She is capable of far better, in other words.

Defined differently, Senator Bernie Sanders probably disappointed the largest number of people during the convention. When he formally moved to have the convention accept Hillary Clinton as its nominee, he broke a lot of hearts in the ranks of his supporters. Sanders is in the difficult position now of campaigning for Hillary on the basis of "she's better than Trump," which is a serious letdown to millions of his fans. So on sheer volume alone, Bernie probably disappointed the most during convention week.

But the biggest disappointment was, of course, Debbie Wasserman Schultz. D.W.S, as I like to call her (which saves so much typing time), had to step down from chairing the Democratic National Committee on the eve of the national convention's start. She strongly resisted this move, if behind-the-scenes reports are to be believed, and even still wanted to still personally gavel the proceedings into order (which would have surely resulted in some rather deafening booing from the crowd). The WikiLeaks document dump proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that the D.N.C. had been acting as an extension of Hillary Clinton's campaign team all along -- confirming precisely what Bernie supporters have been saying for almost a year, now. After the convention ended, three more high-ranking D.N.C. staffers also had to resign as well.

Now, to be somewhat fair, D.W.S. didn't know the WikiLeaks bombshell was about to hit. She had no idea she was about to be exposed right before the convention started. However, she already knew what the D.N.C. had been up to, and had resisted strong entreaties (from the Bernie camp) for her to step down, for weeks and weeks before the convention started. When she finally did step down, she tried to do so in a fashion that would still allow her to take the convention stage -- which, at that point, could only have hurt her party and her candidate.

Of course, Hillary Clinton deserves her own (Dis-)Honorable Mention for immediately hiring D.W.S. for her campaign team (think for a minute about the message that sent to Bernie voters). But there really was no competition -- Debbie Wasserman Schultz was clearly the Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week during the convention.

[Contact Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz on her House contact page, to let her know what you think of her actions.]

 

Friday Talking Points

Volume 402 (8/5/16)

Before we begin, forgive me if I now slip out of my usual editorial "we" for this introduction, because I felt it needed more of a personal personal pronoun (if that makes any sense).

When I was at the convention, I decided to contact a young author that I've published here before, just to hear his take on things. His name is Eric Varela, and he previously wrote a piece for my site six-and-a-half years ago, on the one-year anniversary of Barack Obama's first Inauguration. When I asked him to update his bio information, he sent me this:

Eric Varela is an artist, a technologist, and an activist in the Baltimore, Maryland region. He is a graduate of the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) where he spent his time studying video, sculpture, fibers, and painting. He currently spends his days working as a Technical Artist for an E-Learning company and spends his nights tending to the every whim of his kittens Bombadil and Goldberry.

I had heard through the grapevine that Eric was a big supporter of Bernie Sanders, so I thought his take on the convention would be an interesting one. The essay I got back absolutely blew me away, both because it was so well-written and because it was so comprehensive. Eric recounts every step of the journey he's followed over the course of this election so far, in insightful detail.

As he points out, he doesn't speak for all young voters and he's not even attempting to sway anyone else's vote or anything. He is where he is, and he tells you how he got there. But this should be required reading for those now getting way too complacent about Hillary Clinton's chances in November. Which is why we're pre-empting our regular talking points section this week to bring it to you. If any influential Democratic Party folks actually read these amateurish attempts at talking points each week, then they should really pay heed to what this particular young Bernie supporter has to say.

-- Chris Weigant

 

How Did We Get Here? The Democratic Primary From Ignition To Bernout.

By Eric Varela

The Democratic primaries are officially over. After a year of investing the totality of my energy and passion into choosing the next leader of our country, I am finally laying down my saber and starting to breathe.

I went into this election season relatively unenthused. I was displeased with government. Not necessarily with the outcomes (although I was upset with my fair share of decisions in the past eight years) but more with the structure and the process, and primarily with the only parties we allow in charge of it.

I was fed up with the partisanship, the childish bickering, and the propensity of both parties to put their own interests before the interests of the country as a whole. I was fed up with their strangleholds on power, and was utterly tepid at the prospects of voting to prop either of them up any further. When my driver's license came up for renewal I changed my party affiliation to "Unaffiliated" to disassociate myself from the entire mess.

And then Hillary Clinton announced she was running for president, and I was slightly more energized. The woman who I had wanted to win so badly in 2008, who on multiple occasions had said she wasn't going to run again, was again reigniting my dreams. In 2008 it was time for a strong capable woman to be president. In 2016 it was overdue. She had no real competitors of note and changing my affiliation was a hassle, so I decided to sit back and eagerly await voting for her in the general.

And then I heard an interview on NPR with a senator from Vermont. He spoke with passion and with heart and he spoke about the things I was frustrated with. The things that seemed as plain as daylight about what was broken in this country, the things nobody else in politics seemed to either notice or want to discuss. And I thought: "Good for you! You'll never get anywhere, but I'm glad there's someone in the race talking about these things."

That night I brought up the interview with some friends who also regularly listened to NPR.

"Ugh can you believe him? He was so rude, so arrogant!" was the first thing I remembered hearing. Also: "I can't believe they gave him that much air time. He better be thankful for what he got."

I didn't press it much further, I assumed they'd heard a different interview, and really I was there to drink and play board games, so why spoil the fun?

And then the Democratic debates started, which in contrast to the GOP debates were shining beacons of civility and respect, and an example of how leaders of a nation should conduct themselves. I finally got a chance to hear the candidates' stances on the issues in their own words, and I was thrilled that we had two strong candidates to choose from.

I started talking with people I knew -- my friends, my coworkers, my family -- and people would start saying things like: "I really like Bernie Sanders but there's no way he's going to win, so I'm just going to vote for Hillary." And I agreed, and we moved on.

And then Bernie Sanders started doing good. His poll numbers were rising. He was raising money. He was energizing a base, bringing new people into politics, bringing people back into politics. He had a simple message, a clear vision of the future, and the passion and energy to get us there. It looked like he actually had a shot and I was finally on board. I switched my party registration back to "Democrat," and for the first time in my life I sent in $25 to a political candidate. It felt good.

More debates followed and I was beginning to look more critically at Hillary's positions, and more favorably on Bernie's. There were fundamental differences in the way they spoke and the visions they had for the country. Hillary positioned herself as the only candidate to be able to take on the Republicans, while Bernie talked about creating a movement to create real change. The way Hillary talked reminded me of the way Coke and Pepsi aligned themselves in the early days of soda advertising; codependent rivals mutually aligned to eliminate all other competitors. Bernie talked like someone ready to get his hands dirty and make the future he wanted to see a reality.

Hillary's campaign started using the slogan "I'm With Her," and Bernie started using the slogan "Not Me, Us." More than anything else these slogans summed up their campaigns. Hillary was pitching a dispassionate brand of politics that required a lack of involvement as long as you had faith in your leaders. So as long as you were "with her" she was going to take care of you. Bernie wanted to make a revolution, it wasn't about him, it was about getting people involved in politics, and working to fix the glaring issues in the system so that everyone would be better off.

The weeks and months went on. I was seeing amazing things happen. People I'd been trying to get involved in politics for the past decade were waking up and getting excited about politics and getting involved with Bernie Sanders' campaign. Friends and family not yet old enough to vote were asking what they could do to get involved and asking me to pick them up buttons and stickers from local events. He was doing incredibly. His polls were continuing to climb, he was continually out-raising Hillary in campaign contributions, he was winning states.

There's a big middle portion here between the start of the campaign and today, that gets a little fuzzy and I'm having a little trouble piecing it all together in hindsight. It's difficult because things didn't change all at once, but they did start changing, and they started pilling on little by little.

With such an incredible movement growing one would expect to see that narrative reflected in the news, but every month the same articles would come out. Headlines proclaiming Bernie was finished, and his political rise was over. Headlines proclaiming that Bernie had had his fun, but it was time for him to drop out.

At some point the "artful smears" started coming out: Bernie's health is failing, Bernie is a sexist, Bernie is a racist, Bernie is a liar. At some point the "artful smears" started being turned on his supporters. After a year of watching a diverse, multicultural, multigenerational group of people organically grow together, bringing together people that spanned ages, genders, races, faiths, and sexualities, all of a sudden we were all "Bernie Bros." The only ones voting for him were white male Millennials who wanted "Free Shit."

This was the one that stuck, and the one that hurt the most. Thousands of voices were suddenly silenced. I knew feminists who were told by their heroes they were only voting for Bernie "for the boys". I knew women being shut down in arguments because they were mansplaining Bernie Bros. Black, Mexican, Korean, Peruvian friends being told they didn't understand the needs of minorities. Jewish friends told they didn't understand what was happening in Israel. Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer friends being told Hillary Clinton was the greatest queer activist since Harvey Milk and chided for not accepting the Reagans as heroes in the movement.

Somewhere in this middle portion, we lost our rights to speak and to be heard.

Somewhere in here the campaign switched to not being against Bernie, but against his supporters.

The attacks were coming harder and more frequently, from Hillary's campaign, from Hillary's supporters, from Hillary herself. Hillary especially seemed to take a personal interest in dismantling the youth vote. In one debate she was asked about her low poll numbers among young voters and her response included the phrase: "But if you're new to politics and this is the first time you've really paid attention...." Shortly after that an interviewer asked about her donations from the fossil fuels industry and she responded: "I feel sorry sometimes for the young people who believe this, they don't do their own research."

She told the generation of "digital natives" who grew up with instant access to the entire summation of human knowledge that they did not do their research. She readily dismissed the notion that you could be young and informed, or young and involved, or young and have an opinion that mattered. It was clear from her answers that she didn't understand or respect the youth voters. Her supporters, convinced of the homogeneity of her opponent's supporters, started saying things like, "It's OK, young people don't vote anyways."

Bernie and his supporters were actively drawing in and engaging with youth voters and Hillary and her supporters were actively alienating and perpetuating the stereotype of their noninvolvement.

Somewhere in here was the shift to the heavy condescension that would follow Bernie supporters through the rest of the campaign. From here we started being told that we should be ashamed to "dream", that we were cultists following a desperate messiah, that we were naive, that we were not real Democrats, even that we were Republicans (or that we were easily influenced by their propaganda), that we were traitors for not supporting Hillary. Fellow Millennials started using the language that had regularly been used to put us down by the Boomers and the Gen-Xers -- that we were lazy and entitled and uninformed and childish. We were called sexists, racists, privileged, elitists, apathetic, overly-energetic, incapable of critical thought. We were told we weren't going to vote anyways, and that they didn't need our votes even if we did. We were told we wanted everything all at once, that we were fighting for an impossible Utopia -- and that we needed to stop trying.

Somewhere in this transitional period we started seeing very real institutional pressures actively working against us. We saw a low number of debates scheduled at odd times when we were backing a candidate whose greatest weakness was name recognition. We saw the D.N.C. change their rules to exclude Lawrence Lessig from participating in the debates with his single-issue platform of campaign finance reform. We saw the D.N.C. rolling back Obama-era campaign finance rules to benefit Hillary. We saw Super PACs lining up to support Hillary, while Bernie passionately decried them and vowed to not use them in his campaign. We saw the national media proclaim every half-a-point victory of Hillary's painted as a crushing defeat for Bernie and every double-digit lead he had as the end of his campaign. We saw journalists coming out saying they had traded access to Clinton in the past in exchange for letting her team dictate language and structure in their articles.

We saw irregularities in voter registration and polling numbers, and silence from the D.N.C. and Hillary's camp. We saw polling centers closed down, blocked, disorganized, understaffed, undertrained, underprepared, and understocked on ballots. We saw this disproportionately in areas favoring Bernie. We saw manufactured stories of violence and suddenly we were all brutish troublemakers who were impossible to work with.

At some point in this transitionary period Correct The Record appeared, having spent a cool $6 million to date (in a proud and public fashion) with their Orwellian Ministry-of-Truth-esque goals of astroturfing the internet to make support of Hillary seem stronger online. I am reminded of the scene in Thank You For Smoking where the main character explains to his son: "I didn't have to [prove I'm the best]. I proved that you're wrong, and if you're wrong, I'm right."

During this entire campaign I experienced first-hand the Bernie Sanders campaign encouraging new voices, energizing voters, and bringing people into the political process, and I experienced the Hillary Clinton campaign attacking, silencing, and marginalizing voices. I saw silence on issues that brought questions of integrity into the process of the campaign with a candidate who has the lowest integrity ratings a presidential candidate has ever seen. I saw people who were hurting and struggling being told they needed to wait to get what they wanted, that they couldn't get it all at once. I saw Bernie Sanders ridiculed in the debates for "diagnosing problems" that nobody else was talking about. I saw Hillary Clinton make promises to the Sanders camp when it was in her best interest and walk back on her part of the bargain when it no longer was.

I have seen a troubling relationship with media from the Clinton camp, and an incredible erosion of trust in the news from my generation. I am troubled by the fact that at the end of July she hasn't held a press conference in 210 days, and that when they are held the questions are prescreened. I am troubled by her use of white noise machines to keep out journalists, and to silence her opposition. I am most troubled of all that this comes from the candidate who has called herself the "most transparent public official in modern times."

After the D.N.C. email leaks came out, depending on your reading of them there was either irrefutable proof that the D.N.C. had worked to put Clinton in power, or at the very least you acknowledged that there was some preferential treatment by the D.N.C. for Clinton. Again, the more troubling issues came in the forms of the responses of her supporters. It was: "obvious that they would have a preference since Sanders wasn't a real Democrat," and: "the D.N.C. is a private organization, they can do whatever they want." And I was reminded of why I was fed up with the two parties in the first place.

I went into the conventions with the smallest sliver of hope that the leaked emails would force about some change in the party, and potentially even see a Bernie ballot come out of it all. If not, I was expecting to see bridge-building, working for unity, and active work to bring Bernie's supporters back into the party.

On the first day Debbie Wasserman Schultz was removed as the chair of the party and it looked like this was the first step in the right direction. Within the hour it was announced that she was now an honorary chair on Hillary's campaign and it was clear the direction the party was headed.

We wanted humility, compassion, and remorse, and instead we got further condescension, aggression, and scorn. The party that had been actively campaigning against us was now simultaneously demanding our silence and our submission.

The night Hillary was officially announced the nominee was devastating. Hillary had run a worse campaign and she had won. Even though she had been dropping in polls among her own party since the start of the campaign, even though her national polls were at an all-time low. Even though she had been dividing the party, and dismantling the single largest block of youth voters that the Democrats had ever seen thanks to Obama. Even though she had turned away a flood of new blood into the party. Even though she was polling lower against Trump. Even though she had turned the most vocal and passionate supporters of liberal causes into the fiercest critics of the party. Having been insulated by the media and boosted by her celebrity, she somehow came out on top.

So as Bernie supporters, we were upset. We saw a party that had spent the past year pushing its newest and most passionate people away to elect a weaker candidate, who was riddled with scandals, who unified the Republican Party in their hatred of her, who had spent the past year telling us how naive our ideas were. Guaranteeing this election would be one spent battling personalities and not ideologies. And we saw a party that was now demanding the fruits of our labor and our unwavering subservience.

So when the D.N.C. unveiled "the most progressive Democratic platform ever" it didn't feel like they were finally listening to our ideas. It felt like they had mugged us for those ideas. It felt like they had been ripped from us and put in the hands of someone who had a history of misrepresenting her intentions to take advantage of our support, and someone who had no intention of following through on them.

We started hearing all the arguments we were shut down for using for Bernie being used against us. Our ideas that were once impossible fantasies of delusional youth were now necessary crusades in the battle of evil against the GOP. We were accused of wanting purity when we only wanted a destination. The privilege we decried it took to be satisfied with the current state of affairs of the country was now the privilege we were flaunting by not being enthused by Hillary. Minorities who were saying in unequivocal terms that they had already suffered under a Clinton presidency -- and would suffer again under another one -- were being silenced in favor of the feel-good "white savior" narrative being built around the threat of Trump. We had the opportunity to campaign on hope and unity and instead we got division and fear.

We traded directed passion for aimless incrementalism that exists without critique of the state we are in. We traded a passionate base for a passionless leader. We traded a candidate who was opening borders and possibilities for one who is entrenching current parties and systems that are fundamentally broken. One who was amplifying voices that didn't know they had a right to speak for one who asked only your loyalty and your silence. We are running the two most hated people in America against each other at a time it is more important than ever to come together as a nation.

So while I am upset that my favorite candidate did not win, I am more bothered by the aggressive apathy the one who did inspires in people. I am worried at the reluctant support prevalent in my social networks of people who are mostly voting for her out of obligation to not make Trump president. I am troubled by the lack of any semblance of accountability for the elections and the dismissive attitudes of the people who benefited from supposed improprieties. I am terrified we are sending a candidate against Trump who cannot win in a contest that should have been the most easily-won in the history of American politics.

I feel ostracized from the only party I am supposed to be able to count on as allies, and pushed further away by its members when they find out I'm not toeing the line. I feel conflicted as a feminist for wanting so badly for more women to be in politics, and for not agreeing with Hillary's ideals, positions, or tactics. I feel deeply saddened that Bernie and his supporters are being set up as the inevitable scapegoats in the case of a Democratic loss in November, and that the attacks we've experienced until now are only going to be darker and more violent then.

So the primaries are over now. I have nothing left to fight for. Bernie Sanders made me want to be a Democrat and Hillary Clinton made me want to get out of politics forever. Now I have to decide what I want to do. When I first started voting someone older and wiser than me told me that every election he had ever participated in had been billed as: "The Most Important Election Of All Time." I try to keep that in mind when people tell me the same thing today. This year we have the Supreme Court, and in four years we have redistricting. There will always be crucial battles "Our Side" cannot lose.

I only get one vote, and I've been doing my best to convince everyone I know, for as long as I've been able to vote that it is an incredible privilege, and a profound duty, and that no matter how small it seems, that "Every Vote Counts". But at this point voting seems little more than a tacit endorsement of a broken political process that is wholly incapable of producing competent leaders or of providing a voice to an increasingly disillusioned citizenry.

In the primaries I would have walked barefoot 20 miles uphill in the snow to get to a polling center to vote for Bernie. In the general, if the lines aren't too long, I'll go in -- but I'll be voting for someone other than Hillary and someone other than Trump.

I won't presume to tell anyone else how to vote, but I can no longer support the two-party system, and I especially cannot support these two parties as the only options. We deserve better candidates. We deserve better parties. We deserve better elections. We deserve a better system. And if we can't vote for that at a time when the most hated candidates to ever run for office are running against each other, then when can we vote for it?

-- Eric Varela

 

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Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisWeigant

Cross-posted at: Democratic Underground
Cross-posted at: The Huffington Post

 

161 Comments on “Friday Talking Points [402] -- A Warning For Complacent Democrats”

  1. [1] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    8 Trump doesn't need an intervention - the Grifty Old Parasites do.

  2. [2] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    What goes on in Detox Mansion
    Outside the rubber room
    We get therapy and lectures
    We play golf in the afternoon
    Well, it's tough to be somebody
    And it's hard not to fall apart
    Up here on Rehab Mountain
    We gonna learn these things by heart

    - Warren Zevon

  3. [3] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    "astonishingly this even left out some of the Trump-related news"

    You've gotta love that Liberal Media employee Speaker Newt "if you quote me, you're lying" Blingrich is on Team Outsider Orange. I was channel surfing the other day and stopped on MSLSD just in time to see Mark Sanford! He didn't seem to be on board Trump's crazy train. He said "old dogs don't learn new tricks". Presumably, Mark is still a hiker or maybe Jesus has forgiven him or something. Anyway, he also said "if he would just shut up". Sad!

  4. [4] 
    Osborne Ink wrote:

    I am really sick and tired of whiny little crybabies who didn't get all the cookies they demanded. Oh, the DNC was engaged in general election planning with Clinton as the presumptive nominee? In MAY, a full TWO WEEKS AFTER Sanders had been all but mathematically eliminated, when it would have been political malpractice to do otherwise? HORRORS!!!! RIGGED SYSTEM!!! BURN IT ALL DOWN!!!

    There is a strong cohort of Berniacs who came from the fringe, and to there they shall now return, wailing and gnashing their teeth in the outer darkness of total irrelevance with Jill Stein. They are not needed, they are not missed.

    They came in without basic civics knowledge, not understanding the rules or the process, and screeched CONSPIRACY!!! at every turn because that is easier than admitting to ignorance.

    They smeared and harassed civil rights icons, ganged up and chased anyone they disagreed with off social media, formed gantlets at the exits of Clinton events to curse and berate families with children, then have the GALL to act like they are martyrs of oppression.

    Frankly, I'm done with them.

    They eschewed good advice from strong progressives -- winnable people like me, who wanted a strong alternative to Clinton -- choosing to argue and attack rather than adjust and learn.

    When their candidate utterly failed in California through the worst mess of a GOTV effort, they shrilly cried SABOTAGE!!! just like they did in Puerto Rico, and New York, and every state where they were SHOCKED to find that Clinton is actually popular in places where their hero-saint is not.

    Basically, anyone who doesn't want to take part in the MOST PROGRESSIVE DEMORATIC PARTY OF MY LIFETIME has no grounds to accuse me, or any Democrat, of excluding them. They have excluded themselves, and well may it profit them on the margins, with their antivaxx crusader friends.

    Which I think is what they actually want, because it is far easier to preen in your moral superiority than to risk being tainted by compromise and negotiation over matters that impact the lives of real people.

  5. [5] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    The Donald just backed down and endorsed Ryan and McCain. The puppet has started dancing on those strings. Weak!

  6. [6] 
    Michale wrote:

    While attending the Democratic National Convention, it was pretty plain to see that party unity has not quite yet been achieved.

    Ya think?? :D

    o, welcome to the general election season, Republicans! Having second thoughts on your nominee yet? To quote Jedi Master Yoda: "You will be... you will be."

    OR..... Or the same failed advice that was given during the primaries is the same failed advice that will not work in the general.. :D

    Of course, Hillary Clinton deserves her own (Dis-)Honorable Mention for immediately hiring D.W.S. for her campaign team (think for a minute about the message that sent to Bernie voters). But there really was no competition -- Debbie Wasserman Schultz was clearly the Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week during the convention.

    Can't argue with that MDDOTW award..

    Well deserved... :D

    I'll get to the guest author's commentary later in the day.. But from what I glanced over, it looks awesome.. :D

    Michale

  7. [7] 
    Michale wrote:

    I'll get to the guest author's commentary later in the day.. But from what I glanced over, it looks awesome.. :D

    And anything that can get Oink so riled up has GOT to be a really good read.. :D

    Michale

  8. [8] 
    Michale wrote:

    The Donald just backed down and endorsed Ryan and McCain. The puppet has started dancing on those strings. Weak!

    And the inherent hypocrisy of the Left Wingery shines thru...

    According to JFC, Trump is wrong when he DOESN'T support Ryan or McCain..

    When Trump DOES support Ryan & McCain, Trump is STILL wrong...

    Honestly, Liz..

    THIS is what passes for "serious" discussions in your world?? These incoherent rants (not my words)??

    Michale

  9. [9] 
    Michale wrote:

    As he points out, he doesn't speak for all young voters and he's not even attempting to sway anyone else's vote or anything. He is where he is, and he tells you how he got there

    And THAT is refreshing to read.... Especially in light of all the Hillary-bots around who just mouth useless platitudes about glass ceilings and garbage like that...

    Well, now I just HAVE to read Mr Varela's commentary... :D

    Michale

  10. [10] 
    Michale wrote:

    I was fed up with the partisanship, the childish bickering, and the propensity of both parties to put their own interests before the interests of the country as a whole. I was fed up with their strangleholds on power, and was utterly tepid at the prospects of voting to prop either of them up any further. When my driver's license came up for renewal I changed my party affiliation to "Unaffiliated" to disassociate myself from the entire mess.

    A man after my own heart!! I followed a similar process that lead me to registering as an NPA (No Political Affiliation)

    "Ugh can you believe him? He was so rude, so arrogant!" was the first thing I remembered hearing. Also: "I can't believe they gave him that much air time. He better be thankful for what he got."

    Yep.. Yep... Can't upset the status quo.. The Establishment is all.. And all is for the Establishment...

    And then the Democratic debates started, which in contrast to the GOP debates were shining beacons of civility and respect, and an example of how leaders of a nation should conduct themselves.

    Well, it's easy to be civil when the only two candidates are expected to play their required roles.. QUEEN IN WAITING and COURT JESTER... :^/

    I maintain that you find out more about a person's REAL character in a knock-down drag-out rather than tea and crumpets...

    Hillary's campaign started using the slogan "I'm With Her," and Bernie started using the slogan "Not Me, Us." More than anything else these slogans summed up their campaigns.

    I know, right!?? That's it EXACTLY... With Hillary, it's ALL about Hillary...

    So as long as you were "with her" she was going to take care of you.

    See Debbie Wasserman Schultz... :D

    At some point the "artful smears" started coming out: Bernie's health is failing, Bernie is a sexist, Bernie is a racist, Bernie is a liar. At some point the "artful smears" started being turned on his supporters.

    Yep, that's the Political Party way... Protect the Party at all costs.. ALL must be slammed down until they submit to the will of the Party..

    That is a large source of my frustrations with my fellow Weigantians..

    DO NOT QUESTION THE PARTY. SUBMIT... SUBMIT..

    It's nauseating...

    During this entire campaign I experienced first-hand the Bernie Sanders campaign encouraging new voices, energizing voters, and bringing people into the political process, and I experienced the Hillary Clinton campaign attacking, silencing, and marginalizing voices. I saw silence on issues that brought questions of integrity into the process of the campaign with a candidate who has the lowest integrity ratings a presidential candidate has ever seen. I saw people who were hurting and struggling being told they needed to wait to get what they wanted, that they couldn't get it all at once. I saw Bernie Sanders ridiculed in the debates for "diagnosing problems" that nobody else was talking about. I saw Hillary Clinton make promises to the Sanders camp when it was in her best interest and walk back on her part of the bargain when it no longer was.

    Yep, yep, yep and yep....

    Hillary is the consummate politician...

    Which is about the worst insult I can conjur up.. :D

    More later.. Got ta get SOME work down.. :D

    Michale

  11. [11] 
    Michale wrote:

    AND SHOOTING takes the gold for the US!!!

    How ironic!! :D Heh

    Michale

  12. [12] 
    neilm wrote:

    IO [3] Spot on.

    I still have my FB feed filled with "true progressives" who call Hillary disgusting names and announce (like anybody cares) that they are going to support Jill Stein. They all live in a very blue state, so, just like their pathetic rants, their voting intentions are meaningless.

    I've nothing against Jill Stein and the Green Party (I used to support Greenpeace back in the day), but the whole "Hillary is worse the Trump" nonsense is pathetic.

  13. [13] 
    neilm wrote:

    @CW:

    Thanks for the tip to read the comments for the Tim Huelskamp op-ed in the Washington Post.

    He doesn't have many friends in KS any more.

    Maybe Trump has done the country a favor and reminded us that we need adults in politics. Sad day for the Republicans if they have to appeal to an informed and critical electorate.

  14. [14] 
    Michale wrote:

    Hillary Clinton's post-convention bounce runs into a familiar wall: Emails

    Friday could have marked the end of what has been arguably the best week of Hillary Clinton’s campaign.

    Coming off a successful Democratic convention, combined with some of the most pronounced Republican infighting to date, Clinton took a commanding lead over GOP rival Donald Trump, both in national and many swing state polls.

    But instead of capitalizing on the momentum, she tripped up again on her political Achilles’ heel — emails — before an audience she has kept at arm’s length over the last 16 months — journalists.
    http://www.latimes.com/politics/la-na-pol-clinton-emails-20160805-snap-story.html

    So much for Hillary's "bounce"... :D

    heh

    Michale

  15. [15] 
    neilm wrote:

    Things to ponder:

    Will The Donald be able to cope with the Olympics being top billing for the next two weeks?

  16. [16] 
    Michale wrote:

    Maybe Trump has done the country a favor and reminded us that we need adults in politics.

    The problem is your idea of an "adult" is a person who lies at the drop of a dime, who wouldn't know the truth if it came up and bit her on her ass...

    Democrats simply DON'T KNOW HOW TO GOVERN....

    It's that simple...

    Michale

  17. [17] 
    Michale wrote:

    Top officials at the biggest police union in the country are upset with Hillary Clinton, saying she snubbed them.

    The leader of the National Fraternal Order of Police told The Hill that the Democrat sent a signal through her staff that she wouldn’t be seeking the union’s endorsement.

    "It sends a powerful message. To be honest with you, I was disappointed and shocked," said Chuck Canterbury, the president of the National Fraternal Order of Police.
    "You would think with law enforcement issues so much in the news that even if she had disagreements with our positions, that she would’ve been willing to say that."

    Clinton’s opponent, Donald Trump, is now actively seeking the union’s support as he trumpets a “law and order” message on the campaign tail.
    http://thehill.com/blogs/ballot-box/presidential-races/290586-police-union-clinton-snubbed-us

    It's simply inconceivable to me that ANYONE who is pro-LEO can support Hillary Clinton...

    It's like a Japanese person saying the support FDR in the aftermath of the internment camps or a jewish person saying they support Hitler in the aftermath of WWII...

    It's inconceivable.. Mind-numbingly and mind-bogglingly inconceivable...

    Especially when you consider the words of Hillary Clinton in the aftermath of the LEO assassinations in Dallas and Baton Rouge......

    The ONLY candidate that have cops' backs is Donald Trump...

    Michale

  18. [18] 
    Michale wrote:

    It's simply inconceivable to me that ANYONE who is pro-LEO can support Hillary Clinton...

    To put it into a context that ya'all could readily understand...

    It would be as if an illegal immigrant, a criminal, would support Donald Trump.... Or, if a muslim terrorist would support Donald Trump...

    Such support would be COMPLETELY against their own best interests...

    Like having anyone associated with LEO supporting Hillary Clinton.. It's completely and utterly against the best interests of Law Enforcement...

    Quite possibly fatally so...

    As Dallas and Baton Rouge prove beyond any doubt...

    Michale

  19. [19] 
    Michale wrote:

    Belgium police machete attack: Knifeman shouting 'Allahu Akbar' attacks two officers outside station
    http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/belgium-police-stabbing-female-officer-8574786

    In the aftermath of this attack on LEOs, President Odumbo was heard to say, "If these officers would have just admitted their racism and their failures, then they would not have been attacked.."

    Candidate Hillary Clinton chimed in, "If white people would have just kowtowed to Zwahiri Kahn at the Demcorat Party Convention, these Belgian officers would not have been attacked.."

    :^/

    Michale

  20. [20] 
    apophis wrote:

    [14]
    neilm

    Trumps MO is to attack anyone and anything stealing media air time from him. So we will see if he takes a shot at the Olympics.

  21. [21] 
    Michale wrote:

    Trumps MO is to attack anyone and anything stealing media air time from him.

    And ya'all's MO is to attack TRUMP for anything and everything, regardless of the accuracy or validity of the attack..

    What's yer point??? Besides the psychosis, I mean.. :D

    Michale

  22. [22] 
    Michale wrote:

    Ya wanna poke the bear... Yer gonna get the horns.. :D

    Michale

  23. [23] 
    neilm wrote:

    So we will see if he takes a shot at the Olympics.

    Maybe Trump hasn't stopped looking at pictures of himself yet and realized that the Olympics are on, because he is going after Japan and their Sony TVs instead. Let's give him a day or two - Team Refugee and the accolades they are receiving might prick his thin skin.

  24. [24] 
    neilm wrote:

    The wheels are coming off the bus. Another GOP'er is leaving the party:

    "It’s a common observation on the left, but it’s an observation that a lot of us on the right genuinely believed wasn’t true — which is that conservatism has become, and has been for some time, much more about white identity politics than it has been about conservative political philosophy. I think today, even now, a lot of conservatives have not come to terms with that problem."

    "Trump uncovered something that had been latent in the GOP. It cropped up now and then, like Pat Buchanan’s campaign for President in 1992 and 1996, but then it would be swept back under the rug. But now that this has been uncovered, it is becoming mainstreamed into the party. You can’t go back."

    http://ordinary-gentlemen.com/2016/08/01/this-party-cannot-be-saved/

  25. [25] 
    neilm wrote:

    One off the list. Turns out Trump's sense of humor isn't very good, and it gets him into unnecessary trouble:

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/fact-checker/wp/2016/08/06/trumps-right-he-didnt-kick-a-baby-out-of-a-campaign-rally/

  26. [26] 
    Michale wrote:

    Clinton's lead over Trump narrows to less than three points: Reuters/Ipsos poll
    http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-election-poll-idUSKCN10G2BQ

    And, once again, we see that all the predictions of Trump's demise have been GREATLY exaggerated... :D

    Will ya'all EVER learn??? :D

    Michale

  27. [27] 
    Michale wrote:

    The wheels are coming off the bus. Another GOP'er is leaving the party:

    YYYAAAAAWWWWWNNNNNNNN

    Another THE GOP IS DEAD prediction...

    Nothing but wish-casting...

    Michale

  28. [28] 
    Michale wrote:

    Woman Charged With Vandalizing Trump Sign, Nearly Running Over Resident
    http://boston.cbslocal.com/2016/08/06/donald-trump-sign-vandalism-andover-susan-bryant/

    And, once again, the peace and tolerance of the Left Wingery is on full display..

    Funny how ya'all accuse Trump and his supporters of instigating and advocating violence, yet the *FACTS* clearly show that all the violence is coming from the Left Wingery *AGAINST* Trump and his supporters..

    Once again, ya'all have fantasy..

    I have the facts...

    Michale

  29. [29] 
    Michale wrote:

    And Hillary CONTINUES to lie about her emails.. I swear, this woman is simply INCAPABLE of dealing with FACTS on anything...

    Hillary Clinton tried to answer questions about her emails. It didn’t go well.
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/08/05/hillary-clinton-still-has-nothing-but-terrible-answers-on-her-email-problems/

    And THIS is the candidate ya'all support??

    Mind-boggling...

    Michale

  30. [30] 
    Michale wrote:

    This isn’t just your father’s 1970s-era Carter-esque malaise — this is modern, turbocharged, malignant malaise that the Democrats obviously can’t fix. Let’s face it. A month or two of very average job creation does not undo the damage caused by Obama’s failed economic policies. As I wrote this week, Clinton’s embrace of all things Obama is forcing her to maintain a steady stream of discredited happy talk on the economy, which only generates more cynicism about her and more doubts about her ability to change anything about the economy. Her insistence on pretending that the economic outlook is rosy only drives up her negatives and plays to the stereotype that she is habitually dishonest with the American people. If she continues to try to perpetuate the illusion that the economy is doing well, it will be impossible for her to adopt any real economic solutions. In fact, it’s a prescription for all of our problems to get worse.
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-partisan/wp/2016/08/05/what-does-todays-economic-malaise-mean-for-hillary-clinton/

    Yep... Yep...

    Democrats go on and on about how things are so awesome for Americans...

    Democrats are living in a dream-world...

    Michale

  31. [31] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    Democrats go on and on about how things are so awesome for Americans... Democrats are living in a dream-world...

    Which puts the GOP, naturally, on the opposite side: in this case, a dystopian nightmare. I hope you don't talk politics with your kids before they go to bed.

    It appears that the alt-conservative crowd is well on its way to doing for the GOP what alt-rock did for Rock & Roll: make it all too depressing for words.

    My guess is that, by the first week of November, we'll be packing away all the Halloween stuff.

  32. [32] 
    Michale wrote:

    Which puts the GOP, naturally, on the opposite side: in this case, a dystopian nightmare.

    Which is what the US has in the here and now.. Courtesy of incompetent Democrats..

    These are the facts that no amount of burying your head in the sand and Pollyanna wishful thinking can change...

    It appears that the alt-conservative crowd is well on its way to doing for the GOP what alt-rock did for Rock & Roll: make it all too depressing for words.

    Actually, it's the Demcorat Party who made this country that way...

    My guess is that, by the first week of November, we'll be packing away all the Halloween stuff.

    Uh.... Yea...

    For 2 reasons..

    1. Halloween just ended..

    and

    B. We will have President-Elect Donald Trump.. :D

    It'll be morning in America... :D

    And just think how much fun I am going to have!!! heh

    Gloating all thru the annual Weigantia Fundraiser... Makes me giddy just thinkin' about it. :D

    Michale

  33. [33] 
    Michale wrote:

    http://www.latimes.com/politics/

    Clinton ahead by less than a single point..

    Oh... yea...

    TRUMP IS TOAST..

    Trump is "imploding"...

    :D

    Michale

  34. [34] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    I have a hard time believing that the author was such a fan of Clinton's prior to this election when he now describes her as:

    "...someone who had a history of misrepresenting her intentions to take advantage of our support, and someone who had no intention of following through on them.

    Bernie was who I supported, but I recognize that Clinton either shares or isn't that far off from Bernie on almost every issue.

    If you went into the DNC hoping to find unity, it seems strange that you feel cheated by Bernie's influence over the Democrat's platform instead of elated at how much he pushed progressive issues. Too many people seem to be "all or nothing" when it comes to how they feel about a candidate. If I like Person A running for office, then I have to hate Persons B, C, & D -- which just seems foolish.

  35. [35] 
    TheStig wrote:

    Aw, relax, Democrats aren't complacent...heh, heh, just had to say that :)

    Osborne Ink takes the longer view and sees the stark strategic consequences of disappointed Bernie supporters throwing this election to Lord God (Why Can't We Use Atomic Bombs)Trump.

    But, if I look back a few decades I can see (a much younger) myself in Eric Varela. His observations and perceptions are completely valid. It's a dirty system, riddled with money, but throwing the election to Trump isn't likely to make the system cleaner or fairer. A pessimistic downside view is that if Trump wins, it may the last election we have for a while. My advice is stay politically engaged, hold your nose and vote for the least lizard who can actually win...Clinton. Varela has about 3 months to work out the anger and reluctantly accept the stark strategic options and their potential consequences. He can take some genuine satisfaction that: 1) Sanders did force Clinton to pivot significantly and 2) Sanders will still be in the Senate to hold Clinton on the pivot. She can read the polls.

  36. [36] 
    Michale wrote:

    Obama’s Cash Payment to Iran Was More Than a Ransom — It Broke Criminal Law
    http://www.nationalreview.com/article/438744/iran-ransom-payment-president-obama-broke-law-sending-cash-iran

    And for Obama... The hits just keep on coming. :D

    Michale

  37. [37] 
    Michale wrote:

    Obama’s Cash Payment to Iran Was More Than a Ransom — It Broke Criminal Law
    http://tinyurl.com/zavvvtt

    And for Obama... The hits just keep on coming. :D

    Michale

  38. [38] 
    Michale wrote:

    I have a hard time believing that the author was such a fan of Clinton's prior to this election when he now describes her as:

    So typical of Weigantians... :^/

    "You don't toe our line. You MUST be lying!!!"

    This is exactly why I am needed here.....

    Michale

  39. [39] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    TS [34],

    "Varela has about 3 months to work out the anger and reluctantly accept the stark strategic options and their potential consequences."

    I agree. He lives in deep blue MD, so if he votes (D) or (R), there will be no consequences. The result will be the same. If he votes for Stein or Johnson, he might accomplish something. That's his best strategic option.

  40. [40] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    @michale,

    I thought comic relief was why you're needed here ????

    The hits come regardless of their factual accuracy or lack thereof.

    I have a week's worth of catching up to do, so I'll start slow. I sincerely hope Eric can stick around and contribute here in the comments section. His is a perspective we don't see here much, and explicitly seeking out viewpoints different from our own is part of what allows us to live up to cw's reality based moniker.

    JL

  41. [41] 
    John M wrote:

    For every one of your polls Michale, I can do one as well showing just the opposite:

    From the Morning Consult, Aug. 5th, of 2,000 registered voters: Clinton 46%, Trump 37%, undecided 18%, Clinton UP by 9 percentage points.

    From ABC/POST, Aug. 4th, Clinton 51%, Trump 44%, Clinton UP by 7 points.

  42. [42] 
    John M wrote:

    Also, according to the new NBC/Wall Street Journal polling released Thursday, only 1 percent of black voters nationally support the Republican nominee. This is the lowest level of support ever recorded among that demographic.

    Trump also suffers among Hispanic voters, garnering just 26 percent of their vote, according to an Economist/YouGov poll released earlier this week.

  43. [43] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    @jm,

    Sure, Michale is engaged in a bit of wishful thinking on current polling. But the conventions are just the beginning of valid general election piling. 99% of the race has yet to be run.

    JL

  44. [44] 
    John M wrote:

    Also, in a poll By Suffolk University conducted Aug. 3 by phone among 500 likely voters in Florida, Clinton leads Trump by 48% to 42%, giving her currently a 6 percentage point lead in Florida.

    This is in addition to earlier polls showing Clinton with a 15 point lead in New Hampshire, a 9 point lead in Michigan and an 11 point lead in Pennsylvania.

  45. [45] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    Piling = polling

  46. [46] 
    John M wrote:

    nypoet22 wrote:

    "But the conventions are just the beginning of valid general election piling. 99% of the race has yet to be run."

    I totally agree with you there. We still have a long way to go and anything can happen. But if Trump stays true to form, after all, how can he not be anything but himself? like he has done and is continuing to do all this past week, and the same trends continue for another month or two, it is a very bleak outlook for Trump and perhaps the Republicans as a whole, indeed.

  47. [47] 
    John M wrote:

    For the icing on the cake, this one even made the local news here in my own hometown:

    Hillary Clinton leads Donald Trump in a surprising new poll of Georgia, edging the Republican nominee 44% to 40% among registered voters in the deep red state.

    The Atlanta Journal-Constitution poll, released Friday, showed Clinton with a 4-point lead over Trump, excluding third-party candidates. The Democratic nominee retains an advantage, 41% to 38%, with Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson and Green Party candidate Jill Stein included in the survey. Johnson pulls 11% support, while Stein garners 2%.

  48. [48] 
    John M wrote:

    Just think what that means for even GEORGIA, now to be a competitive swing state at this point in the campaign for the DEMOCRATS.

  49. [49] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Joshua,

    I sincerely hope Eric can stick around and contribute here in the comments section. His is a perspective we don't see here much, and explicitly seeking out viewpoints different from our own is part of what allows us to live up to cw's reality based moniker.

    Who is Eric? Did I miss something?

  50. [50] 
    apophis wrote:

    [47]
    Elizabeth Miller

    Eric Varela, guest author...

  51. [51] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Okay, first off, I am so busted!

    I really do read the articles above the comments but I usually read the comments first for whatever reason and Joshua seemed to be referring to comments made by Eric.

    That's my excuse and I'm sticking to it!

    Now, as for Eric's piece - his essay is, by far, the longest piece I have ever read in its entirety and loved every single moment of it!!! This was a truly awesome essay - every single word had its place, every paragraph an essential meaning.

    Bravo, Eric!

  52. [52] 
    Michale wrote:

    Joshua,

    I thought comic relief was why you're needed here ????

    See what ya get fer thinkin'?? :D

    I sincerely hope Eric can stick around and contribute here in the comments section. His is a perspective we don't see here much, and explicitly seeking out viewpoints different from our own is part of what allows us to live up to cw's reality based moniker.

    Considering the "welcome" he received, I doubt he would be inclined to hang around..

    Which simply proves what I have been saying all along.. Despite all the claims of "tolerance", the vast majority of Weigantians will simply attack anyone that doesn't toe their HILLARY IS AWESOME line....

    Michale

    JM,

    For every one of your polls Michale, I can do one as well showing just the opposite:

    So, in other words, you are saying that you can cherry pick polls to "prove" EXACTLY what you want to "prove"..

    Why do those words sound familiar??

    Oh yea.. Because it's what I have been saying for over a decade here.. :D

  53. [53] 
    Michale wrote:

    Well, it was bound to happen...

    Hillary's private, insecure, hackable and probably hacked email server got someone killed...

    Cotton: Clinton discussed executed Iranian scientist on email
    http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/cotton-clinton-discussed-executed-iranian-scientist-on-email/article/2598807

    Michale

  54. [54] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "So, in other words, you are saying that you can cherry pick polls to "prove" EXACTLY what you want to "prove".."

    You mean, just like YOU have been doing Michale???

    Also, when does cherry picking stop??? When a variety of polls after polls ALL start showing the same trend???

  55. [55] 
    John M wrote:

    Here's more for you Michale:

    A new Arizona poll gives Hillary Clinton a 45 percent to 42 percent lead over Donald Trump in a four-way presidential race that includes Libertarian Gary Johnson and Green Party candidate Jill Stein. Phoenix-based OH Predictive Insights surveyed 996 likely voters on August 1. Johnson gets 4 percent. Stein grabs 1 percent and 8 percent are undecided.

    Clinton was one point up in a poll of Missouri released last week, where Obama lost by almost 10 points in 2012. And Republicans reacted with consternation to a June poll in Utah, which showed Clinton tied in a state last won by a Democrat in 1964.

  56. [56] 
    Michale wrote:

    You mean, just like YOU have been doing Michale???

    As I have said repeatedly, I point to polls to make a point about ya'all pointing to polls..

    Also, when does cherry picking stop???

    My cherry picking will stop when ya'all stop YOUR cherry picking..

    When a variety of polls after polls ALL start showing the same trend???

    When a variety of polls after polls that are CHERRY PICKED ALL start showing the same trend???

    There, fixed it for you..

    The *ONLY* acceptable polls for Weigantia are the RCP poll of polls..

    And THOSE polls paint quite a different picture than the polls YOU want to use....

    Michale

  57. [57] 
    neilm wrote:

    Can't post quote - gets stuck in Nanny Filter.

    Was going to post the paragraph starting "As it is, conservatives of all ages and incomes"

    Sound like anybody we know?

    Source: https://praxis.ink/2016/06/donald-trump-is-an-apotheosis-not-an-aberration-of-american-conservatism/

  58. [58] 
    neilm wrote:

    As it is, conservatives of all ages and incomes can wake up in the morning and read email newsletters filled with nonsense from the likes of Dick Morris along with false promises of “secret cancer cures.” As they make their breakfast, they can flip through websites utterly devoid of reporting and data analysis predicting that Democrats are on the run and Hillary Clinton is sure to be indicted. During the work day, they can turn on the radio and listen to Christian nationalists like Bryan Fischer tell them how the Founding Fathers intended to provide religious freedom only to Christians. At night, they can listen to Sean Hannity tell them another horror story from the Book of Benghazi.

    Sound like anybody we know?

    Source: not nanny filter safe - CW - can you release the first version of this post please.

  59. [59] 
    neilm wrote:

    “The effect Trump is having on down-ballot races has the potential to be devastating in November,” added a Florida Republican. “His negative image among Hispanics, women and independents is something that could be devastating to Republicans. Trump’s divisive rhetoric to the Hispanic community at large has the potential to be devastating for years to come.”

    AKA Pete Wilson, CA, 1994.

  60. [60] 
    neilm wrote:

    Much has been made of the growth in the hispanic community over the last 30 years, but there is also another demographic change that is even more problematic for Republicans - the rise of the "Nones" = the non-religious.

    Good article on it here - in fact Sheffield's series (links on the page) are all worth reading.

    https://praxis.ink/2016/02/the-rise-of-irreligion-is-the-gops-real-demographic-crisis/

  61. [61] 
    Michale wrote:

    “The effect Trump is having on down-ballot races has the potential to be devastating in November,” added a Florida Republican. “His negative image among Hispanics, women and independents is something that could be devastating to Republicans. Trump’s divisive rhetoric to the Hispanic community at large has the potential to be devastating for years to come.”

    Yea, that's ya'alls wet dream...

    Just like your "TRUMP IS TOAST" predictions...

    It's all nothing but wishful thinking...

    The only hispanics who don't like Trump are criminals/illegals and those who aid and abet criminals/illegals..

    These are the facts..

    Michale

  62. [62] 
    Michale wrote:

    Sure, Michale is engaged in a bit of wishful thinking on current polling.

    Just as everyone else is engaging in a buttload of wishful thinking by claim Trump is toast.... :D

    The difference between them and me is I acknowledge the facts.. They do not...

    Michlae

  63. [63] 
    Michale wrote:

    The hits come regardless of their factual accuracy or lack thereof.

    Yep...

    It's the BUSH years all over again... :D

    Michale

  64. [64] 
    Michale wrote:

    But regardless of that, if you want factual accuracy...

    Inching toward normalization with Iran is such a fraught idea that Americans want to believe their president knows what he’s doing. This is a regime that hangs teenage homosexuals, incarcerates Christian converts, flogs citizens who criticize their government and finances suicide bombers. And not just the bombers who target U.S. troops in the Middle East, but also synagogues in South America.

    Iran’s leaders still call the U.S. “the Great Satan,” spew anti-Jewish hate speech and fanaticize about destroying Israel, which is why Israeli leaders view the mullahs’ nuclear obsession with such alarm.

    So I hope and pray that President Obama is right when he says that the deal he forged with Iran has slowed that nation’s rush to acquire nuclear weapons. But he didn’t help his own cause at Thursday’s news conference.

    Obama being Obama, it took 20 minutes and 30 seconds to get to the second question Thursday. It came from Mary Bruce of ABC News and was prompted by a recent Wall Street Journal story revealing that the administration organized an airlift of $400 million in cash last January as four American hostages were being released.
    http://www.ocregister.com/articles/iran-724806-cash-obama.html

    Ask and ye shall receive... :D

  65. [65] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    The whole Bernie vs Trump debate reminds me of a little political fable:

    Once, Lucy asked Charlie Brown which he preferred: sunrise or sunset? After thinking for a moment, Charlie Brown says, "well, sunset, I suppose." Lucy says, "Ha! Just as I thought. A pessimist! You're hopeless, Charlie Brown." She throws up her arms and walks away. After another moment, Charlie turns to Linus and says, "Actually, I've always sort of liked noon."

    Like Lucy, we spend so much time these days listening to and discussing politics from the viewpoint of political extremes that it's easy to forget that there is a political center, a noon, and that although the center is routinely derided by both ends of the spectrum (as "squishy" or worse), it is where most folks are, for better or worse.

    Trump's greatest failing so far has been his inability to pivot to the center politically. Whether he, like Lucy, simply doesn't realize that a middle exists, or believes that the center is too 'squishy' for his tastes is immaterial: he has not made the pivot. His acceptance speech was all about sunset, veering toward midnight. This is why Reince Priebus was hollering into the phone at Trump a few days ago: "Do you realize how badly you're fucking this up?"

    So, while it may not be "Morning in America", it certainly isn't nearly as late in the day as Trump would have us believe, a fact that anyone can discern by simply looking out a nearby window.

    Judging by Trump's latest attempt at a pivot - reading his endorsements of Ryan, McCain and Ayotte off a page as if he were in a hostage video - Trump doesn't believe yet that there is a center, or that moving to the center is a sort of capitulation.

    The latest polling shows that this is hurting him particularly with white men and women in the suburbs, a constituency that Romney won handily in 2014. Sunscreen, anyone?

  66. [66] 
    Michale wrote:

    Balthasar,

    You remind me of a British aristocrat describing an American colonist circa mid-late 1700s... :D

    In other words, your entire opinion is biased and it's NOT an opinion shared by Joe & Jane Sixpack....

    It's an opinion from someone who has already concluded that Hillary is as pure as the driven snow and that Trump is a Satan/Hitler love child...

    In short, your opinion is useless because it relies on subjective criteria and NOT on objective fact..

    But hay.. We need you.. Rational and logical people NEED people like you to show what traps are needed to be avoided.. :D

    Michale

  67. [67] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    According to the associated Press, we owed the shah of Iran 400m in 1979, which was paid the day after the nuclear deal was signed, and after iran had settled 2.5b in debt to us. The four captured navy men were released a few days prior, from which some people on both sides inferred a quid pro quo. The AP says there's no hard evidence to support that inference.

  68. [68] 
    Michale wrote:

    The four captured navy men were released a few days prior, from which some people on both sides inferred a quid pro quo.

    BZZZZZZZZZZZZ Wrong...

    The four Iranian hostages were released on the exact same day that Iran received the planeload of cash...

    As a matter of fact, one of the released hostages said that their departure was delayed UNTIL the plane with the cash ransom had landed..

    We also have Iranian leadership saying that the cash was ransom for the hostages.. And, according to Obama, we can trust the Iranian's word...

    Michale

  69. [69] 
    Michale wrote:

    We also have Iranian leadership saying that the cash was ransom for the hostages.. And, according to Obama, we can trust the Iranian's word...

    Or, at least, we can trust the word of the Iranians when they say stuff that furthers Obama's agenda...

    Obama might claim that we CAN'T trust the word of the Iranians when they say something that Obama doesn't like..

    As in now.. :D

    Michale

  70. [70] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    @Michale,

    So you've said, twice. The AP says the two events happened a few days apart, on either side of Kerry making the nuclear deal. The AP also says there's no direct evidence of quid pro quo. Which of these factual claims are you disputing, and with what evidence?

    JL

  71. [71] 
    neilm wrote:

    NY [63]: The right wing at the moment aren't interested in reality, only what people feel is reality. This is why arguing with somebody who lives by their feelings is pointless, because the 'feelies' don't accept reality so facts are pointless:

    Newt Gingrich giving the game away:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g4f5ewIYYuQ

  72. [72] 
    neilm wrote:

    NY [66]: Evidence? Good luck with that. I'm sure he'll tell you how he feels and what he wants to believe, because Rightwingistan is going as bananas over this as it did Benghazi!!! and Hillary being indicted (a 100% certainty in the echo chamber).

  73. [73] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    @neil,

    Just because Michale has not proven his assertion doesn't necessarily mean it's wrong. What date an event occurred and what conditions prompted it may or may not be objectively verified. Absent proof, who can say what discussions went on behind closed doors?

    JL

  74. [74] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    You remind me of a British aristocrat describing an American colonist circa mid-late 1700s... :D

    First time being compared to an aristocrat. I suppose that I should object to taxing the rich then, shouldn't I?

    In other words, your entire opinion is biased and it's NOT an opinion shared by Joe & Jane Sixpack....

    Who are, luckily, not the whole electorate. Let me introduce you to Joseph and Janie Winerack, who got a couple of degrees from the local community college, attend church on holidays, and live in a bedroom community just outside of Philadelphia. They voted for Romney in 2014, but just can't get in line with Trump's bombast. They're swinging hard for Hillary, and will probably be her margin in contested states.

  75. [75] 
    Michale wrote:

    Who are, luckily, not the whole electorate. Let me introduce you to Joseph and Janie Winerack, who got a couple of degrees from the local community college, attend church on holidays, and live in a bedroom community just outside of Philadelphia. They voted for Romney in 2014, but just can't get in line with Trump's bombast. They're swinging hard for Hillary, and will probably be her margin in contested states.

    And if you can show the tens of thousands of Wineracks out there at Hillary rallies, then you would have a point...

    But you can't, so you don't...

    You really need to face reality and the facts..

    The excitement and enthusiasm is with trump, not hillary...

    Michale

  76. [76] 
    Michale wrote:

    Poor Hillary...

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CpSc3XmWEAQR-TA.jpg

    Needs help up the stairs.. She is so old and frail..

    Michale

  77. [77] 
    Michale wrote:

    Joshua,

    o you've said, twice. The AP says the two events happened a few days apart, on either side of Kerry making the nuclear deal. The AP also says there's no direct evidence of quid pro quo. Which of these factual claims are you disputing, and with what evidence?

    The reports from the hostages that were released...

    Their eyewitness statements...

    Your evidence??

    Obama and Kerry statements. Two well known liars...

    Michale

  78. [78] 
    Michale wrote:

    The released hostages have absolutely NO REASON to lie..

    Obama and Kerry have EVERY reason to lie..

    Further, there are the statements from the Iranians who Obama said we can trust...

    I have a plethora of evidence and facts..

    You have the statements of two KNOWN liars with EVERY reason to lie..

    Michale

  79. [79] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    I have a plethora of evidence and facts..

    then why don't you share the primary sources? so far the only link you gave was an article from a reporter, citing a different article from a different reporter. here is the original article from last tuesday:

    http://www.wsj.com/articles/u-s-sent-cash-to-iran-as-americans-were-freed-1470181874

    from that article:

    The money represented the first installment of a $1.7 billion settlement the Obama administration reached with Iran to resolve a decades-old dispute over a failed arms deal signed just before the 1979 fall of Iran’s last monarch, Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi.

    The settlement, which resolved claims before an international tribunal in The Hague, also coincided with the formal implementation that same weekend of the landmark nuclear agreement reached between Tehran, the U.S. and other global powers the summer before.

    i.e. the facts of the case support obama's assertion.

    The released hostages have absolutely NO REASON to lie..
    Obama and Kerry have EVERY reason to lie..
    Further, there are the statements from the Iranians who Obama said we can trust...

    those are not facts, they're opinions - educated guesses from people who don't have access to all the facts. those who claim there was a quid pro quo don't have to be lying to be wrong.

    as yet, none of the alleged plethora has been shared with anyone here.

    I would not like to think that a person would tell someone he has a plethora, and then find out that that person has *no idea* what it means to have a plethora.
    ~the three amigos

    JL

  80. [80] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    also as i said, the AP fact-checked the WSJ article and found they were wrong about the dates of the events:

    http://elections.ap.org/content/ap-fact-check-trump-base-clinton-and-iran-payment

    On Jan. 12, four days before the Iran deal was implemented and five days before the payment was delivered, 10 sailors veered off course in two small boats and landed on an island in the Persian Gulf where there's an Iranian military installation. They were held at gunpoint and released the next day after negotiations between Secretary of State John Kerry and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif. The Navy has disciplined many of the sailors and their commanders for the navigation error that led to an international incident.

    JL

  81. [81] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    so to clarify, there were ten prisoners released three days before the nuclear deal was implemented, and another four the day after. the money was part of a claim that was due for arbitration at the hague.

    the timing of the settlement coincides with both prisoner releases and the nuclear deal being implemented. people involved in one deal or the other freely speculated about the three events being connected in one way or another, but nobody has presented direct evidence.

    JL

  82. [82] 
    apophis wrote:

    [72]
    Michale

    That photo was taken in Feb. in NC. it's being used on RW sites as "proof" that her health is bad.

  83. [83] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    The released hostages have absolutely NO REASON to lie..

    - and absolutely no reason to have known what was going on at the time.

    Pastor Saeed Abedini, an Iranian-American Christian pastor who was imprisoned in Iran, told Fox Business Network in an interview that he was taken out of his prison cell and brought to an airport in Tehran. There, a plane was waiting for him and other freed American prisoners, Abedini said. But before they could be flown home, Abedini said he and the other prisoners had to wait several hours for another plane to land first.

    “They didn’t talk about money,” Abedini said. “They just told me about the plane. The reason they said you are here in the airport is because we are waiting for another plane. After that, they never told anything to me and I didn’t see anything.”

    Reports of a cash-for-hostages deal apparently originate from a right-wing Iranian media outlet that made the link in a broadcast February 15, nearly a month after the payment had been made. The broadcast described a quid-pro-quo and showed some grainy video that may or may not have been actual footage and crowed to their audience that they'd bested the US.

    The problem is of course, that most of that is made up. Even the WSJ article that started the controversy included the little noted fact that U.S. and European officials never disclosed exactly when the cash-laden plane landed in Tehran, but that a report by the Iranian Tasnim news agency, with close ties to the Revolutionary Guard, said it arrived at Mehrabad airport on the same day the Americans left the country. Since then, US officials have said on the record that the two events didn't happen at exactly the same time.

    And there are other little discrepancies that undermine the story: as Matt Lee of the AP reports, US officials had every reason to believe that they were about to lose on the issue of the seized Iranian money, which had been litigated in the Hague for decades - and they were asking for 10 billion dollars interest.

    So the Iranians would have to be terrible negotiators to have settled for an arms-for-hostages deal that netted them only $400M - literally, the world's stupidest hostage takers. Lucky for Kerry, the negotiators who finally signed the deal were different negotiators. State Department spokesman John Kirby told the Journal: “Not only were the two negotiations separate, they were conducted by different teams on each side, including, in the case of The Hague claims, by technical experts involved in these negotiations for many years.”

  84. [84] 
    neilm wrote:

    "Just because Michale has not proven his assertion doesn't necessarily mean it's wrong. What date an event occurred and what conditions prompted it may or may not be objectively verified. Absent proof, who can say what discussions went on behind closed doors?"

    I get an open mind, but assertions that are new and material demand some intellectual rigor - some form of evidence presented with the original statement.

    Otherwise you have to accept any fantasy until a certain point in time has passed and the "fantasy"-artist has obviously given up even trying to substantiate, because they have 101 more fantasies they are spinning.

    This is Donald Trump's MO.

  85. [85] 
    Paula wrote:
  86. [86] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    [80] John Oliver calls this the 'bed of nails' theory. One nail will maim you if you try to stand on it, but place a thousand of them close enough together and you can sleep on 'em.

    [81] She doesn't look frail to me. In a few years we'll be calling her the 'Steel Lady'.

  87. [87] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    Speaking of John Oliver - he did a very thought provoking piece tonight about journalism, corporate ownership and the horrible economics of it all. I hope you can find it somewhere.

    But it made me think: could this be fixed by changing copyright law? Right now, no corporate-owned entity such as NBC could air a song by Prince without paying royalties - perhaps to itself - for the use of the song. And each time that song is aired, ASCAP or BMI notes it and bills the corporation on behalf of the artist. There is even an arrangement now regarding 'sampling'. Each individual payment is ridiculously small, but it adds up, making both artists and corporations rich(er).

    So, meanwhile, journalists are going broke everywhere, and the owners of newpapers haven't seen profits since the Carter administration. What's different? Nobody's bothering to charge for the re-use of journalistic content in corporate-owned media that I'm aware of. Journalists have no ASCAP, charging the Sony Corporation 1/10th of a cent for lifting six paragraphs from an article in a newspaper owned by the Sony Corporation. Or suppose Fox had to pay its news division .05 cents each time one of their journalists quoted a specific WSJ article. It adds up.

    The key would be to keep it in the realm of Corporate copyright law. Corporations only care about revenue streams, not operating expense, and they don't care where the revenue comes from, as long as the source is reputable (so they will, for instance, count piles and piles of corporate welfare as 'income' without loss of sleep) and the two roughly balance one another. So even though logic would normally compel you to reject the concept of making news more expensive to produce by charging royalties, in fact the collection of royalties would make news more profitable and available by improving its revenue stream.

    Moreover, since original material has more value in such an environment, so would the creators of widely-quoted original content. Suddenly, content-rich articles taken from raw data would have the highest value in the inter-corporate marketplace, where the real money resides.

    In the meantime I would exempt all non-corporate entities from being affected by such a law. For consumers, news should be free to consume, full stop. Improving news' revenue stream would help that, too.

    Now if in fact you can tell me that journalists do in fact receive royalties when they are quoted at length in other people's articles that appear in corporately owned outlets, then I would respond that you should immediately push to strengthen royalty payments and royalty collections, particularly on the part of smaller news outlets. Corporate America would kick and moan for a minute, and then realize what wonderful income such a shell game could produce.

    Imagine that.

  88. [88] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    First off -- filtered comments have been freed. Woo hoo! Let the comments run free! [sorry for the delay]

    ListenWhenYouHear [34] -

    I can personally vouch that the author was indeed in the Hillary camp in 2008. I'm just sayin'...

    TheStig [35] -

    I, too, can see myself in Eric's essay, which is probably why I thought it was so good. I remember the first time I was disillusioned. I think it was the failure of Jesse Jackson's run in the 1980s... but I also know I don't think I could have been so eloquent about it, especially when the wounds were so fresh.

    Agree with him or not, Eric did write a pretty damn good recap of a Bernie supporter's trajectory through the primary season. That's why I thought it was good enough to run on a Friday, personally.

    John From Censornati [39] -

    I've been thinking about voting patterns, Bernie supporters, anti-Trump GOPers, and the like, and was kind of wondering a tangential thought:

    Will this year's voting be (more than normal) dependent on whether you live in a swing state or not?

    I wonder what Jill Stein's numbers will look like in places like CA versus perhaps OH, and what Johnson's numbers will look like in WY versus OH. An interesting subject to ponder....

    nypoet22 [40] -

    My point exactly. I thought, after seeing a convention with a whole lot of dissent, that listening to one of the dissenters' voices would be a valuable thing. I had no idea Eric's essay would be so good -- I had in fact lined up other voices just in case. But I really think this is something a lot of Democrats should be hearing right now, no matter what their position on HRC.

    As for polling [low 40s in above comments] -

    Wait for Monday! Electoral Math rides again!

    Plus, don't forget, there's an alternate polling universe with "unskewed polls," in which Mitt Romney is finishing his first term and running for re-election on the promise that he kept of getting unemployment under 6%.

    Of course, for those of us who live where it's already 4.9%, this universe is hard to understand, but remember Karl Rove on election night 2012? There's going to be a whole lot of that this year, too, that's my guess.

    Heh.

    LizM [51] -

    Now, as for Eric's piece - his essay is, by far, the longest piece I have ever read in its entirety and loved every single moment of it!!! This was a truly awesome essay - every single word had its place, every paragraph an essential meaning.

    Yeah, that's what I thought too. Agree with it or not, it is an awesome piece of writing.

    neilm [58] -

    I think I've freed them all. Sorry for the delay!

    neilm [59] -

    Yeah, I keep thinking of Pete Wilson in CA. However, one fact worth pointing out: it worked for Wilson. He won re-election. True, it killed the GOP in CA for the next 4 or 5 decades, but he did win his own race. Something to ponder.

    The GOP seems on the brink of shoving the Latino vote into the same category as the black vote: 90%-plus for Dems for the foreseeable future. If this truly comes to pass, then FL and AZ become solid blue, and TX turns purple and is a swing state.

    This could mean GENERATIONS of Democratic presidents, to put it in proper context.

    Michale [61] -

    Reagan won CA twice. CA was pretty purple in the late 80s, early 90s. Then Pete Wilson did his anti-immigration thing (see: prop 197? Forget the number). Since then, the only Republican (if you can call him that) who has won statewide office here was Arnie Schwarzenegger. Dems have a lock on this state, because Wilson baited some immigrant-haters. If that happens nationally (or even just in FL), then the GOP can kiss the Oval Office goodbye for a few decades.

    I challenge you -- try, just try, to put together a GOP presidential win without FL. It's pretty tough....

    Balthasar [65] -

    Excellent comment. Just had to say that.

    As for the Iran thing, what I'm astonished isn't a major part of the story is the fact that IT WAS THEIR OWN MONEY. No "payment" happened, and "ransom" depends on your definition of the term. But it was only a "reimbursment." Period. They paid us for warplanes that we didn't deliver. A revolution happened. We froze their money. When diplomacy caused a thaw, they wanted their money back. Plain and simple. I've been meaning to write about this, but convention stuff has overwhelmed me.

    Anyway, that's it for now. More later...

    -CW

  89. [89] 
    Michale wrote:

    Apophis,

    That photo was taken in Feb. in NC. it's being used on RW sites as "proof" that her health is bad.

    I don't care what the Right Wingery is using it for.. I simply pointed out that Hillary needs help up the stairs (FACT) and it makes her look old and frail...

    Michale

  90. [90] 
    Michale wrote:

    - and absolutely no reason to have known what was going on at the time.

    Except that they were told by their Iranian captors.

    And, as Odumbo said, "We can trust the Iranians' word."

    :D

    Michale

  91. [91] 
    Michale wrote:

    I get an open mind, but assertions that are new and material demand some intellectual rigor - some form of evidence presented with the original statement.

    But ONLY when those assertions favor the Right against the Left..

    If the assertions favor the Left against the Right, ya'all accept them unquestionably...

    "I did not have sex with that woman" for example.. :D

    Michale

  92. [92] 
    Michale wrote:

    As for the Iran thing, what I'm astonished isn't a major part of the story is the fact that IT WAS THEIR OWN MONEY. No "payment" happened, and "ransom" depends on your definition of the term.

    Not according to the Iranians. Which, as no one will address, Obama said we can trust their word...

    But here's the thing..

    Why cash??

    If you owe me 400 million dollars legitimately and I ask you to pay me back in cash (unmarked bills, please) wouldn't you think something is hinky???

    Governments don't do business in cash, especially in large amounts such as that...

    Michale

  93. [93] 
    Michale wrote:

    CW,

    I challenge you -- try, just try, to put together a GOP presidential win without FL. It's pretty tough....

    It's simply impossible because this election is unlike any other in history..

    Trump is attracting Dem stalwarts that NO GOP'er ever could touch...

    Put another way, which state went which way in the past 1000 elections isn't going to mean diddley squat...

    It truly is a whole new world..

    I can show you the world
    Shining, shimmering splendid
    Tell me, princess, now when did
    You last let your heart decide!

    I can open your eyes
    Take you wonder by wonder
    Over sideways and under
    On a magic carpet ride

    A whole new world
    A new fantastic point of view
    No one to tell us no
    Or where to go
    Or say we're only dreaming

    -ALADDIN

    :D

    Michale

  94. [94] 
    Michale wrote:

    2016: HILLARY CONQUERS THE STAIRS
    2012: FALLS AT HOME, BLOOD CLOT
    2011: FALLS BOARDING PLANE
    2009: FALLS GOING TO WHITE HOUSE, BROKEN ELBOW

    Dunno if Hillary can SURVIVE the general election..

    I'm just sayin'... :D

    Michale

  95. [95] 
    Michale wrote:

    As senator, Clinton promised 200,000 jobs in Upstate New York. Her efforts fell flat.
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/as-senator-clinton-promised-200000-jobs-in-upstate-new-york-her-efforts-fell-flat/2016/08/07/339d3384-58d2-11e6-831d-0324760ca856_story.html

    A familiar.. Hillary promises, but never delivers..

    Trump's ability to make jobs for Americans is well-documented...

    If Job Creation is your one issue, then Trump is the obvious choice for POTUS...

    Michale

  96. [96] 
    Michale wrote:

    College Takes Down Historical Paintings Because They Might Traumatize Students
    http://dailycaller.com/2016/08/07/college-takes-down-historical-paintings-because-they-might-traumatize-students/#ixzz4GjLVwvF7

    And the wussification of America continues apace..

    Gods help us all... :^/

    Michale

  97. [97] 
    Michale wrote:

    As it is, conservatives of all ages and incomes can wake up in the morning and read email newsletters filled with nonsense from the likes of Dick Morris along with false promises of “secret cancer cures.” As they make their breakfast, they can flip through websites utterly devoid of reporting and data analysis predicting that Democrats are on the run and Hillary Clinton is sure to be indicted. During the work day, they can turn on the radio and listen to Christian nationalists like Bryan Fischer tell them how the Founding Fathers intended to provide religious freedom only to Christians. At night, they can listen to Sean Hannity tell them another horror story from the Book of Benghazi.

    Sound like anybody we know?

    I am certain you THINK you are talking about me..

    But you are so far off the reservation as to be on a different planet..

    First off, I NEVER "make breakfast"...

    Secondly, I don't even HAVE a radio, let alone listen to one..

    Thirdly, I didn't even know Hannity was on the radio that I don't have to listen to, which I never have...

    So, once again, this begs the question..

    Do you *EVER* get tired of being completely and utterly wrong??

    You said above that Trump was "imploding"....

    Yet Hillary's poll numbers are sinking and Trump's poll numbers are rising..

    So you were completely and utterly WRONG... AGAIN....

    That's really gotta hurt... :D

    Michale

  98. [98] 
    Michale wrote:

    Sound like anybody we know?

    I am certain you THINK you are talking about me..

    But you are so far off the reservation as to be on a different planet..

    First off, I NEVER "make breakfast"...

    Secondly, I don't even HAVE a radio, let alone listen to one..

    Thirdly, I didn't even know Hannity was on the radio that I don't have to listen to, which I never have...

    So, once again, this begs the question..

    Do you *EVER* get tired of being completely and utterly wrong??

    You said above that Trump was "imploding"....

    Yet Hillary's poll numbers are sinking and Trump's poll numbers are rising..

    So you were completely and utterly WRONG... AGAIN....

    That's really gotta hurt... :D

    Michale

  99. [99] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    CW,

    "I wonder what Jill Stein's numbers will look like in places like CA versus perhaps OH, and what Johnson's numbers will look like in WY versus OH."

    There Must Be Another Way

    http://www.wnyc.org/story/on-the-media-2016-08-05

  100. [100] 
    Michale wrote:

    Speaking of things that "gotta hurt"... :D

    JILL NOT HILL!!!!
    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/aug/07/jill-stein-green-party-convention-sanders-clinton-us-election

    All those millions and millions of Bernie votes that are leaving Hillary and going to Jill Stein...

    Remind me again how Hillary has this in the bag?? :D

    I have forgotten what with all the facts to the contrary....

    Michale

  101. [101] 
    Michale wrote:

    I get an open mind, but assertions that are new and material demand some intellectual rigor - some form of evidence presented with the original statement.

    But ONLY when those assertions favor the Right against the Left..

    If the assertions favor the Left against the Right, ya'all accept them unquestionably...

    "I did not have sex with that woman" for example.. :D

    In other words, ya'all unequivocally and without hesitation, accept ANY assertion, no matter how ludicrous and far-fetched if it confirms ya'all's preconceived notions....

    Don't get me wrong. I get it.. I am guilty of that at times as well... The DNC/NO FLAGs flap is a perfect example..

    But the difference between ya'all and me is that I *RECOGNIZE* it as an issue and acknowledge my own faults in that issue.. Ya'all never do..

    Another difference is mine are logic based assumptions and common sense that fit the narrative of the given assertion. IE Democrats Hate America is a well-established meme... Reverent Wright, Michelle Obama, etc etc...

    Whereas ya'all's (NEN) assumptions of accuracy are based solely and completely on ideological slavery and blind loyalty to Party dogma...

    In short (too late! :D) my approach is, "If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it's likely a duck..".. If it turns out to be Zebras, well.... That doesn't change the logic of the approach...

    Ya'all's approach is "If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck it ain't a duck until the Demcorat Party *SAYS* it's a duck..."

    Michale

  102. [102] 
    Michale wrote:

    "He's in love with the sound of his own voice."
    -Grace, STAR TREK VOYAGER, Spirit Folk

    :D

    heh

    Michale

  103. [103] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "The *ONLY* acceptable polls for Weigantia are the RCP poll of polls..

    And THOSE polls paint quite a different picture than the polls YOU want to use...."

    Who says??? NO, they DON'T. Even all of the most recent Real Clear Politics polls currently have Clinton ahead of Trump by anywhere between 8 and 12 percentage points.

  104. [104] 
    Michale wrote:

    http://www.nationalreview.com/article/438741/demography-donald-trump-democrats-search-new-core-constituency

    This is why things aren't a slam dunk for the Democrat Party..

    The Dems need Special Interests groups to be able to fan the flames of "us vs them" discontent...

    When there are no more special interest group, the Demcorat Party will have to evolve and actually be representative of AMERICANS...

    Or else wither and die...

    Michale

  105. [105] 
    Michale wrote:

    http://tinyurl.com/ztdw7d3

    This is why things aren't a slam dunk for the Democrat Party..

    The Dems need Special Interests groups to be able to fan the flames of "us vs them" discontent...

    When there are no more special interest group, the Demcorat Party will have to evolve and actually be representative of AMERICANS...

    Or else wither and die...

    Michale

  106. [106] 
    Michale wrote:

    JM,

    Who says???

    The more level-headed members of the Weigantian community..

    Even all of the most recent Real Clear Politics polls currently have Clinton ahead of Trump by anywhere between 8 and 12 percentage points.

    Yes.. That's your claim..

    But then there are the facts...

    RCP Average 7/25 - 8/4 -- -- 43.2 36.7 8.4 4.0 Clinton +6.5
    http://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2016/president/us/general_election_trump_vs_clinton_vs_johnson_vs_stein-5952.html

    Once again.. There is hysterical cherry-picking... Ya'all

    And there are the FACTS.. Me

    "Me..... Meeeee.... And.. ME.."
    -Bill Murray, GROUNDHOG DAY

    :D

    Michale

  107. [107] 
    Michale wrote:

    CW,

    I think Neil might have mentioned it a bit ago.. But I can confirm..

    The NNL filters REALLY don't like when N-A-T-I-O-N-A-L and R-E-V-I-E-W are put together in a URL.. :D They don't even like when the words are actually spelled out...

    Michale

  108. [108] 
    Michale wrote:

    Just testing...

    National

    Michale

  109. [109] 
    Michale wrote:

    OK, I confirmed something..

    The NNL filters DO NOT like the word R E V I E W

    Weird.... :D

    Michale

  110. [110] 
    Michale wrote:

    Who says???

    The more level-headed members of the Weigantian community..

    It really only makes sense..

    As I have said time and time again... Anyone can find any rinky dink poll that "proves" whatever point someone wants to make...

    Polls, more often than not, only show the biases of the poll takers and less of the actual mood of those being polled..

    I have said THAT a lot as well.. :D

    Michale

  111. [111] 
    Michale wrote:

    20,000 quatloos says that all the praise around here for Kasich will disappear when Kasich endorses Trump...

    Any takers?? :D

    "Kasich?? Now THAT's a Republican I could support. HE is a reasonable honorable man.. THAT's a guy that I ..... What?? huh!?? He is endorsing Trump!?? KASICH IS A MONSTER!!! Typical GOP'ER!!!! SCUM!!! I WOULD NEVER SUPPORT KASICH FOR ANYTHING!!!! SCUM OF THE EARTH!!"
    -Weigantians

    :D

    Michale

  112. [112] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    kasich is pretty awful policy-wise. here's one recent example from my sector:

    http://www.politico.com/story/2016/03/charter-school-scandal-haunts-john-kasich-220700

  113. [113] 
    Michale wrote:

    kasich is pretty awful policy-wise. here's one recent example from my sector:

    Wasn't it you who said that he was the only GOP candidate you could see yourself voting for??

    It may have been someone else who said that, but I coulda swore it was you.. :D

    Michale

  114. [114] 
    Michale wrote:

    Trump Voter Shot After Bar Political Debate Turns Violent
    pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2016/08/08/trump-voter-shot-after-political-debate-spurs-shooting/

    Woman’s Home Vandalized Because Of ‘Trump’ Signs
    dfw.cbslocal.com/2016/08/07/mckinney-home-vandalized-because-of-trump-signs/

    Isn't it amazing that all these Trump supporters are being attacked, assaulted and vandalized....

    Yet, ya'all STILL maintain that it's TRUMP and his supporters who are violent???

    Yea, I know.. I know.. It's one of those points... those facts that get ignored by everyone that accuses ME of ignoring points and facts.. :^/

    Michale

  115. [115] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    @michale,

    i can't say definitively, but to my recollection my doomsday choice among the republicans was jeb. he's been terrible on charter schools (but then, so have most democrats) and there are a host of other issues where i strongly disagree with him, and three bush presidencies would also be a slight concern. however, jeb would be someone in whose presidency i wouldn't be afraid of Armageddon and might even find some respect - i get the sense he's more like his dad than his brother in that way. kasich would also not scare me, but i wouldn't vote for him if i could avoid it.

    JL

  116. [116] 
    Michale wrote:

    Donald Trump has proposed making all child-care expenses tax deductible...

    That's just....... That's just....

    Yunno, that's not a bad idea....

    Anyone here willing to give Trump credit??? :D

    Michale

  117. [117] 
    Michale wrote:

    i can't say definitively, but to my recollection my doomsday choice among the republicans was jeb.

    Nor can I say definitively... It might have been John M who said he could vote Kasich..

    :D

    Michale

  118. [118] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    yes, it's nice that this week donald has a reasonable position on child care.

    here's a thought on the current polling: about half of last week's polls had gary johnson at ten percent or better, and jill stein at five percent or better. i'm not sure what hurdle the greens and libertarians have to clear to be involved in the debates, but it seems to me given the current numbers, it should at least be up for discussion.

    JL

  119. [119] 
    Michale wrote:

    yes, it's nice that this week donald has a reasonable position on child care.

    Are you saying that Trump has had a different position in the past on this issue?? :D

    But kudos that you can give credit where credit is due, regardless of how snarkely it's done. :D

    here's a thought on the current polling: about half of last week's polls had gary johnson at ten percent or better, and jill stein at five percent or better. i'm not sure what hurdle the greens and libertarians have to clear to be involved in the debates, but it seems to me given the current numbers, it should at least be up for discussion.

    I may be wrong (it's been known to happen :D) but I think that the Stein/Johnson must poll 12% or better on 5 National Polls.. It might be 15%, not real sure on that..

    Michale

  120. [120] 
    Michale wrote:

    "The city of Detroit is the living, breathing example of my opponent's failed economic agenda. Every policy that has failed this city, and so many others, is a policy supported by Hillary Clinton."
    -Donald Trump

    Yep.... :D

    Michale

  121. [121] 
    Michale wrote:

    We can also see how Hillary's anti-gun policies fair by looking at Chicago...

    :D

    Michale

  122. [122] 
    dsws wrote:

    Has the word "honorary" had its membership in the English language revoked? In the dialect I grew up speaking, being named "honorary chair" of something is not a case of being hired. It's about on the level of a commercially-printed thank-you note: it shows you didn't forget to send a thank-you note; you just don't like the person enough to write them a real one.

  123. [123] 
    dsws wrote:

    Oh, and did everyone notice what she was honorary chair of? It's the Hillary Clinton campaign's department of go-campaign-for-someone-else-and-stay-the-!@#$-away-from-me.

  124. [124] 
    Paula wrote:

    Eric's piece is filled with "somewhere during the transition" points wherein he contends various things started happening which he felt to be unfair, and which he seems to lay on HRC's door. Bernie didn't get fair coverage in the press (he doesn't appear to notice that HRC endures continuous ABUSE by the press and has for 30 years); "artful smears" start appearing (he doesn't seem to notice people at Bernie rallies screaming horrible things about HRC while Bernie says nothing); Bernie supporters start to be dissed by HRC supporters (he doesn't mention the absolutely poisonous online campaigns carried out by Bernie supporters in blog comments, on FB, etc.).

    Hillary has "the lowest integrity rating" -- he ignores the fact-checkers that explain HRC has been consistently vilified by republicans and their accusations are, one and all, horseshit, and that she is, in fact, the most honest politician after Barack Obama and significantly more honest than every single republican that ran in the primaries. Why does he ignore this? Because Bernie traded on it -- Bernie used it. Bernie took a look a the strengths and weaknesses of his opponent and decided to use a weakness that had been successfully built by republicans over 30 years. Why did Bernie do this? Because he was running for office and he was losing.

    The night Hillary was officially announced the nominee was devastating. Hillary had run a worse campaign and she had won.. Hmm. There's a lot of ways to judge a campaign. One is "who won?" HRC did. OK. Well, but Bernie ran on small donations. True, true, true. He wins on that front. Bernie had lots of rallies and people cheered. (So does Trump.) HRC had smaller events and did listening tours. She saved a lot of money and, in the end, still got more votes. Bernie won caucuses; HRC won in the larger contests. HRC's coalition was more diverse than Bernie's. Did Eric prefer Bernie's message? Yes. Does that mean "Bernie ran a better campaign"? No. Two different things.

    Eric feels the HRC drove Bernie voters away -- "ripping" their ideas from them rather than accepting them. See, at this point, I have lost patience. HRC went out of her way to honor Bernie, acknowledge his accomplishment, and work with his supporters on the platform. The fact that she didn't simply submit to being booed at her own convention just doesn't seem unreasonable to me. Clearly there is no agreement possible on that front. But then, I actually like the woman and wish her well. But who cares about Hillary supporters?

    It's great that Eric got involved. I'm sorry he's disillusioned at this point. Mydisillusionment point came many years ago, when Bill Clinton was in office and the "destroy the Clintons" campaign was launched. As I watched Cable news, night after night, breathlessly report every fucking allegation made by sleezy republican operatives I got completely disgusted. Eventually I cancelled cable, went online, found DailyKOS and other blogs and have never gone back. But the fact that all that filthy work haunts HRC to this day, and is constantly exploited by both the right and a lot of uniformed people on the left, dismays and enrages me.

    So, Eric, welcome to the world of politics and lazy, anything-for-ratings media, and lots of people who can't be bothered to actually know what they're talking about. Welcome to the world of imperfect vessels and disagreement and people-don't-care-about-your-feelings and FAUX News and False Equivalency and The View From Nowhere "journalism". It sucks. You go through the dark night of the soul and come out the other side and that's when you either become part of the solution or part of the problem. Good luck.

  125. [125] 
    Michale wrote:

    (he doesn't appear to notice that HRC endures continuous ABUSE by the press and has for 30 years);

    (he doesn't appear to notice that HRC endures continuous *WELL DESERVED* ABUSE by the press and has for 30 years);

    There... Fixed it for you.. :D

    Eventually I cancelled cable, went online, found DailyKOS and other blogs and have never gone back.

    Always nice to find echo chambers where your every ideological bent is catered to and you NEVER have to hear or handle a differing opinion or NEVER have to listen to a fact you don't like.. :D

    So, Eric, welcome to the world of politics and lazy, anything-for-ratings media, and lots of people who can't be bothered to actually know what they're talking about. Welcome to the world of imperfect vessels and disagreement and people-don't-care-about-your-feelings and FAUX News and False Equivalency and The View From Nowhere "journalism". It sucks. You go through the dark night of the soul and come out the other side and that's when you either become part of the solution or part of the problem. Good luck.

    Like I said..

    TOE THE LINE.... OR ELSE

    :D

    Michale

  126. [126] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Michale -

    I think I fixed the "review" problem with the filter.

    Try it now, it should be OK...

    and thanks for being so specific -- makes it easier to fix!

    -CW

  127. [127] 
    neilm wrote:

    Paula [124]: Good one.

  128. [128] 
    Paula wrote:

    [127] neilm: thanks!

  129. [129] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Paula,

    The beauty of Eric's piece is that it tells a personal story of his journey from supporting one candidate for president to supporting another and of the twists and turns along the way on the road to disappointment and disillusionment culminating in a principled decision.

    His perspective is one that not all readers will agree with, of course, but it is his own personal perspective written with what we can only assume is heartfelt passion. We all have our own perspectives and we shouldn't be dismissive of the perspectives of others. That is especially true when they share their thoughts and feelings about a subject as potentially controversial as presidential politics so openly and honestly.

    Eric's essay shed quite a lot of light on what motivated one former Hillary supporter to throw his enthusiastic support to Bernie Sanders and how the primary and convention process led to a decision to withhold support from both major candidates for president.

    After reading Eric's piece, I can say that I have a much better sense of what feeling the Bern was all about. And, while I may not condone some of their tactics, I can say that I now have a much better understanding of what it meant to be a Sanders supporter and how difficult it can be to accept the defeat of their candidate and move to support the victor and Democratic nominee for president.

    I also wish Eric good luck ... good luck in continuing the work begun in the Sanders campaign - to promote better candidates, better parties, and a better system. Much of that work will involve respectful discussion among respectful people.

  130. [130] 
    Paula wrote:

    Elizabeth: it's peachy that you gained what you did from Eric's piece.

  131. [131] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Peachy? That's odd ...

  132. [132] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Is that like saying it's precious?

  133. [133] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Or, like saying thanks for your thoughts but who gives a shit? :)

  134. [134] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    I'm confused.

  135. [135] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    I'd like to see a debate here between Matt and Eric on how to change the system and move the country forward. Maybe Chris could set it up?

  136. [136] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Because, after reading Matt's take (which I largely agreed with)and Eric's piece (which also had some resonance), I can see both sides more clearly now.

  137. [137] 
    Paula wrote:

    I'm just saying it's great that you gained something from the piece which I did not.

    I'm mostly angry -- somewhat at Eric, but even more at all the people along the way who actively or passively lied to Eric, raised his expectations unrealistically, and validated the nonsense he came to believe about how Bernie was "mistreated". I'm tired of Hillary being demonized and don't find it endearing that people like Eric feel they're being "principled" by choosing to vote third party or not vote because HRC just sickens them so much.

    But that's just me.

  138. [138] 
    Paula wrote:

    Who's Matt?

  139. [139] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    See comment [4] ... Matt is Osborne Ink. You should check out his website.

  140. [140] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Hey, Paula ... what do you think about my debate idea?

  141. [141] 
    Paula wrote:

    [140] I think you might want to set up a discussion, not a debate. Debates lead to side-taking. Discussions might lead to constructive conversation and areas of common ground. And start small. How to change the system and move the country forward is a big topic. Pick one aspect of it and really talk about it.

    Can you share a link to Matts' website? Google search brings up a couple -- do you mean his blog (where he says he won't post much anymore) or a site about WW II or something?

  142. [142] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Just click on his username in comment [4] ...

  143. [143] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Or, look under Chris's 'My Links' ...

  144. [144] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Or, forget the whole thing ... just clicked on it myself and was reminded that Matt kind of shut the OsborneInk site down a while ago.

    There is a link he provided in his last post there to another site he was writing for but that link doesn't work.

    Maybe ask him in a comment or ask Chris ...

  145. [145] 
    Michale wrote:

    Review...

    Michale

  146. [146] 
    Michale wrote:

    Yep, ya fixed it.. :D

    Wooot!! :D

    Michale

  147. [147] 
    Michale wrote:

    Liz,

    Is that like saying it's precious?

    It's likable enough... :D

    Michale

  148. [148] 
    Michale wrote:

    I'm tired of Hillary being demonized and don't find it endearing that people like Eric feel they're being "principled" by choosing to vote third party or not vote because HRC just sickens them so much.

    Yea... Principles really suck, don't they.. Especially when they don't line up with one's chosen ideological agenda.... :^/

    "It seemed silly to get so wrapped up over an arbitrary principle."
    "I thought we had agreed that principles are ONLY principles if they ARE arbitrary??"

    -Digger

    Michale

  149. [149] 
    Michale wrote:

    And in other news..

    http://www.drroyspencer.com/2016/08/will-we-reach-4000-days-since-a-major-hurricane-strike/

    October 6th, 2016 marks the 4,000th day since the US has had a major hurricane strike on the CONUS...

    But... But.... But....

    I thought Global Warming was supposed to make major hurricanes an every day event!! I know it's true because Al Gore said so!! Even made a MOVIE about it!!!

    How can this be???

    :D

    Fail.... EPIC FAIL...

    "Failed... Failed... IMPRESSIVELY failed.."
    -NASA Doctor, ARMAGEDDON

    The facts are clear.. Human caused global warming is nothing but a political bunch of hooey...

    HOOEY, I say!! :D

    Michale

  150. [150] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "Nor can I say definitively... It might have been John M who said he could vote Kasich.."

    YES, that WAS ME

  151. [151] 
    John M wrote:

    nypoet22 wrote:

    "here's a thought on the current polling: about half of last week's polls had gary johnson at ten percent or better, and jill stein at five percent or better. i'm not sure what hurdle the greens and libertarians have to clear to be involved in the debates, but it seems to me given the current numbers, it should at least be up for discussion."

    I believe that I read somewhere that the threshold for joining the debates is 15 PERCENT, if that helps.

  152. [152] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "October 6th, 2016 marks the 4,000th day since the US has had a major hurricane strike on the CONUS...

    But... But.... But....

    I thought Global Warming was supposed to make major hurricanes an every day event!! I know it's true because Al Gore said so!! Even made a MOVIE about it!!!

    How can this be???

    :D

    Fail.... EPIC FAIL..."

    You know very well that DOESN"T prove a DAMN thing. Do you want to hold up a snowball to make the point that in winter you can still create one as somehow some kind of proof against global warming also???

    I notice you conveniently IGNORE the fact that for the past few years, the PACIFIC Ocean by contrast has had an absolutely unprecedented number of hurricanes and typhoons of unusual strength and intensity. It is the Pacific, in fact, that has GONE CRAZY, just as global warming has predicted. You also FAIL to mention that during this same time period, the south Atlantic, off the coast of Brazil, had it's first and only EVER RECORDED hurricane in history.

    I might also point out that the North Atlantic has NOT gone quiet or NOT produced hurricanes. They have just NOT affected the mainland USA very much so far, which has nothing to do with the frequency or intensity of their actual occurrence.

  153. [153] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    I believe that I read somewhere that the threshold for joining the debates is 15 PERCENT, if that helps.

    @JM,

    that sounds right. the trouble in my view is that threshold is WAY too high. census figures say there are 146 million registered voters, and 126 million voted in 2012. so, even a single percentage of the electorate is about a million and a quarter american citizens. this means that by keeping johnson (10%) and stein (5%) off the stage, something like six million greens and thirteen million libertarians get no voice. one of the most revered principles of our constitutional democracy is protecting the right of the minority to be heard, and those are some very substantial minorities not being heard.

    JL

  154. [154] 
    Michale wrote:

    You know very well that DOESN"T prove a DAMN thing.

    Of course, in and of itself, it doesn't PROVE a thing..

    But it IS one more failed prediction in a long long LONG line of failed predictions..

    When I was in High School science, we were told that we create a hypothesis or theory and then use prediction/experimentation to TEST the hypothesis..

    And if the predictions/experiments ALWAYS fail then the hypothesis or theory MUST be altered..

    It's called evidence-based theory...

    But what Global Warming is is theory-based evidence..

    Ya'all START with a conclusion and then simply accumulate evidence that supports the conclusion and ignore evidence that disputes the conclusion..

    And when THAT doesn't work, you simply ALTER the evidence that DOESN'T support the conclusion so that it DOES support the conclusion..

    That's all that this is...

    Michale

  155. [155] 
    Michale wrote:

    I might also point out that the North Atlantic has NOT gone quiet or NOT produced hurricanes. They have just NOT affected the mainland USA very much so far, which has nothing to do with the frequency or intensity of their actual occurrence.

    But that's not what the global warming fanatics predicted..

    They predicted that there would be huge loss of life and massive property damage from these violent storms..

    NONE of it materialized..

    And the frequency AND intensity has gone way WAY down...

    You simply can't admit the fail....

    Michale

  156. [156] 
    Michale wrote:

    Since the Democratic National Committee emails were leaked a few weeks ago, three people associated with the DNC have all been found dead under what could be questionable circumstances.
    http://townhall.com/columnists/rachelalexander/2016/08/09/clinton-body-count-or-leftwing-conspiracy-three-with-ties-to-dnc-mysteriously-die-n2203000

    The Clinton Body Count continues to rise.. It boggles statistical probabilities...

    Michale

  157. [157] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "They predicted that there would be huge loss of life and massive property damage from these violent storms..

    NONE of it materialized.."

    Hmm, you might want to tell that to the victims of super storm hurricane Sandy in 2012. Not to mention Irene in 2011, and Issac in 2012. That's just in the USA. It does not take into account those hat hit Mexico, Jamaica, Haiti, etc. and did not affect the USA at all.

  158. [158] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "And the frequency AND intensity has gone way WAY down..."

    Again, NOT in the PACIFIC. In the Pacific, it has gone WAY UP.

    Also, again, the frequency and intensity has not gone way down in the Atlantic. It has been more NEAR NORMAL. It's just that the USA itself has been spared being hit during this time. It is NOT that hurricanes have not happened at all.

  159. [159] 
    Michale wrote:

    Hmm, you might want to tell that to the victims of super storm hurricane Sandy in 2012. Not to mention Irene in 2011, and Issac in 2012. That's just in the USA. It does not take into account those hat hit Mexico, Jamaica, Haiti, etc. and did not affect the USA at all.

    But it's not a INCREASE in storm activity..

    The simple fact is, there hasn't been a SINGLE Human Caused Global Warming Prediction that has been accurate..

    NOT A SINGLE ONE...

    But I can point to dozens if not HUNDREDS of predictions that have been FLAT OUT WRONG....

    Like I said.. If predictions based on the theory is 1000% WRONG EACH and EVERY time... It's time to discard the theory...

    Michale

  160. [160] 
    Michale wrote:

    Rut Roh!!!

    NEW SOLAR RESEARCH RAISES CLIMATE QUESTIONS, TRIGGERS ATTACKS
    http://www.thegwpf.com/new-solar-research-raises-climate-questions-triggers-attacks/

    GLOBAL COOLING AHEAD!!! :D

    Frankly, I prefer the global cooling to the heat.. My comfort zone is around 55-60 degrees...

    The movie DAY AFTER TOMORROW?? That was my fantasy... :D

    heh

    Michale

  161. [161] 
    Michale wrote:

    EXCLUSIVE: Child rape victim comes forward for the first time in 40 years to call Hillary Clinton a 'liar' who defended her rapist by smearing her, blocking evidence and callously laughing that she knew he was guilty
    'Hillary Clinton is not for women and children,' says Kathy Shelton, 54, who was 12 years old when she was raped by Thomas Alfred Taylor in Arkansas
    Clinton was the rapist's defense lawyer, pleading him down to 'unlawful fondling of a minor'
    The 41-year-old drifter served less than a year in prison
    The plea came after Clinton was able to block the admission of forensic evidence that linked her client to the crime
    Shelton says she's furious that Clinton has been portraying herself as a lifelong advocate of women and girls on the campaign trail
    Clinton accused Shelton of 'seeking out older men' in the case and demanded that she undergo a grueling court-ordered psychiatric examination
    The presidential candidate later laughed while discussing aspects of the case in a recently-unearthed audiotaped interview from the 1980s

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3729466/Child-rape-victim-comes-forward-time-40-years-call-Hillary-Clinton-liar-defended-rapist-smearing-blocking-evidence-callously-laughing-knew-guilty.html#ixzz4Gv68BaXb

    THIS is your Candidate???? :^(

    Michale

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