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Friday Talking Points -- Democrats' Closing Midterm Argument

[ Posted Friday, October 19th, 2018 – 17:18 PDT ]

As usual, there was all sorts of idiocy in the political news last week. But, for a change, we're only going to skim lightly over most of it in an abbreviated weekly roundup, because we've got a special talking points section at the end, where we try our hand at writing a "closing argument" speech for all Democratic congressional candidates to consider using. So there's that to look forward to. Before that, though, let's take a very quick look at the week that was.

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Friday Talking Points -- "Civil" War

[ Posted Friday, October 12th, 2018 – 17:35 PDT ]

There's a debate going on right now among the chattering classes in Washington over whether Democrats should be "civil" or, alternatively, whether they should "kick" back at their opponents. No, really. The hilariousness of such a genteel debate seems to have escaped everyone engaging in it, apparently. Because it is pretty funny, when you consider the actual facts. Which show that Republicans completely abandoned civility altogether, right about the same time they started supporting Donald Trump -- and things have (if it's even possible) now gotten even worse in the midterm campaigns. So all they're really doing is attempting to hold Democrats to a standard they don't even pretend to hew to themselves anymore (after decades of being the moralizing, finger-wagging party, it bears mentioning).

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Friday Talking Points -- Kavanaugh Fight Finally Ends

[ Posted Friday, October 5th, 2018 – 16:46 PDT ]

Brett Kavanaugh is going to be confirmed to the Supreme Court tomorrow. That was the breaking news this afternoon, as Senators Jeff Flake, Susan Collins, and Democrat Joe Manchin all indicated that they're going to vote in favor of Kavanaugh's confirmation. Republican Lisa Murkowski had briefly given rise to hope on the Democratic side when she announced she'll be voting against confirmation, but as things stand now Vice President Mike Pence won't even be required to break a tie, because tomorrow (if every senator votes how they now say they will) the total will be 51 votes for confirmation to 49 against.

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Friday Talking Points -- This Is Why Women Don't Report Sexual Assaults

[ Posted Friday, September 21st, 2018 – 18:35 PDT ]

Brett Kavanaugh was supposed to have been confirmed by the Senate to a seat on the Supreme Court by now. That was the original plan, at any rate. But this plan was blown out of the water last Friday when Christine Blasey Ford came forward and publicly accused him of attempting to rape her when the two were in high school. The fallout still continues, and will continue to do so for some time to come.

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Friday Talking Points [500] -- Manafort Flips!

[ Posted Friday, September 14th, 2018 – 17:50 PDT ]

Convicted felon Paul Manafort pleaded guilty today to two additional serious federal felonies, one of which was conspiracy to defraud the United States government. He also had to pony up tens of millions of dollars' worth of real estate, because one of the frauds he perpetrated was avoiding paying $15 million in federal taxes by money laundering. The biggest news, however, wasn't Manafort pleading guilty to his ninth and tenth felonies, but the fact that to get a plea deal he had to agree to cooperate with Bob Mueller's investigation. This is what he's been fighting against doing all along, so it is big news.

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Friday Talking Points [499] -- The Constitutional Crisis Is Already Here

[ Posted Friday, September 7th, 2018 – 17:55 PDT ]

As we are occasionally wont to do, today's column will be nothing short of a rant. It just seemed like it was time for one, to us. There were two enormous stories in the world of politics this week: the Supreme Court confirmation hearings in the Senate, and the two bombshells about Trump revealed by Bob Woodward and an anonymous senior member of the Trump administration. All other political stories paled in significance.

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Friday Talking Points [498] -- Remembering John McCain, Good And Bad

[ Posted Friday, August 31st, 2018 – 17:19 PDT ]

We have to begin today, sadly, by speaking ill of the dead. However, we do so respectfully (unlike some other folks have done this week). We fully realize it is a serious breach of etiquette, but in all the laudatory remarks given this week about the late Senator John McCain, there has been one glaring omission. Because, more than anyone else, John McCain is responsible for regularizing the concept that a know-nothing could be considered presidential. Some might push the blame back further, to George H. W. Bush, who selected Dan Quayle as his vice president, but McCain certainly shoulders the lion's share of this blame for deciding that Sarah Palin was qualified to be president. Anyone listening to her speak for more than two minutes could easily tell how misguided the idea of her running the country truly was, after all. And yet McCain went ahead and selected her anyway.

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Friday Talking Points [497] -- Guilty Pleasures

[ Posted Friday, August 24th, 2018 – 17:41 PDT ]

We have to admit, we were torn when selecting this week's headline. The other candidate under consideration was: "Making Flippy Floppy," which of course was a Talking Heads song from the 1980s which contained the immortal line: "Our president's crazy / Did you hear what he said?" What with today's news of the Chief Financial Officer of the Trump Organization flipping after being granted immunity, this did seem like the obvious choice, since it followed the news of Michael Cohen and David Pecker of the National Enquirer also flipping on Trump. Oh, and the news of those 30 hours of testimony already given by White House Counsel Don McGahn, as well. But in the end, we weighted the uncontained glee which liberals everywhere greeted the news of the sixteen guilty verdicts/pleas this week more heavily, and had to go with acknowledging these guilty pleasures. Because no guilty verdicts/pleas have caused this much pleasure on the left since Scooter Libby's fall from grace.

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Friday Talking Points [496] -- OMG Omarosa!

[ Posted Friday, August 17th, 2018 – 17:07 PDT ]

Omarosa was wholly created, as a media personality, by Donald Trump. He absolutely loved her backstabbing and underhanded play on his reality show, The Apprentice. He loved her act so much that he brought it with him to the White House. Now that she's turned against him, however, he isn't loving her act quite so much anymore. Sad!

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Friday Talking Points [495] -- Lost In Space

[ Posted Friday, August 10th, 2018 – 17:19 PDT ]

President Donald Trump, when speaking of his idea to create a "Space Force" branch of the U.S. military, invariably sounds like an adolescent boy raving about his favorite science-fiction film. Perhaps this is why he sent Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of Defense James Mattis out this week to announce that the Pentagon will (reluctantly) be going along with Trump's idiocy. Trump even unveiled six prototype logos for the new Space Force, all of which look like they were designed by someone who had just woken up from a coma entered into at some time in the early 1960s.

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