Archive | Politics As Usual

No tax returns for you!

Paul Manafort, Donald’s campaign manager who’s closely linked to Russian oligarchs (who are, in turn, closely linked to Vladimir Putin), has made it official in an interview with CBS This Morning: Donald’s not going to release his taxes. He’s “under audit.”


A story about a boy and a girl

Bill Clinton’s speech (here’s the transcript):

Now, how does this square? How does this square with the things that you heard at the Republican Convention? What’s the difference in what I told you and what they said? How do you square it? You can’t. One is real, the other is made up. And you just have to decide which is which, my fellow Americans.

The real one had done more positive change-making by the time she was 30 than many public officials do in a lifetime in office. The real one, if you saw her friend Betsy Ebeling vote for Illinois today, has friends from childhood through Arkansas, where she has not lived in more than 20 years, who have gone all across America at their own expense to fight for the person they know. The real one, has earned the loyalty, the respect, and the fervent support of people who have worked with her in every stage of her life. Including leaders around the world who know her to be able, straightforward, and completely trustworthy. The real one calls you when you’re sick, when your kid’s in trouble, or when there’s a death in the family. The real one repeatedly drew praise from Republicans when she was a senator and Secretary of State. So what’s up with this? Well, if you win elections on the theory that government is always bad and will mess up a two car parade, a real change-maker represents a real threat.

So, your only option is to create a cartoon alternative. Everybody gets the cartoon. Cartoons are two dimensional, they’re easy to absorb. Life in the real world is complicated and real change is hard, and a lot of people even think it’s boring. Good for you. Because earlier today, you nominated the real one.

I don’t know Hillary Clinton, but I know quite a few people who do. And without exception, this is the Hillary they describe. As a result, the people who do know her are fervently loyal and protective. I don’t think they’re crazy.


Using the right word at the right time

The Exorcist

We’re all grownups here, right? We’ve all used blue language when we’ve slammed our thumb in a door, or when we stub a toe. Depending on what we do for a living, we may use this language rather freely (as in, every other word).

My mother was aghast at my language. “It’s the sign of a weak vocabulary,” she once lectured me. “Well, I guess I shot that theory to shit,” I replied.

“It’s not ladylike,” some friends cautioned. “I’m not a ‘lady.’ I’m a grown woman,” I responded.

So I’m not the most sympathetic person in the world to pearl-clutching over language. You already know this about me.

So when Republicans start going after PA’s Democratic senate nominee Katie McGinty for calling Pat Toomey an asshole, I am all over that shit.

The Philadelphia Inquirer was oh, so shocked, and Katie apologized to them. Fuck them. That kind of precious paternalism is why no one reads them. (Betcha the Daily News didn’t care.)

Toomey’s campaign wrote on Twitter that they would refer McGinty to her campaign chairman, former Gov. Ed Rendell, “who called Pat Toomey ‘a man of uncommon decency.’ Apology accepted.”

Yeah, Ed. Whatever.

First of all, Pat Toomey is exactly what Katie McGinty called him. Anyone who’s ever called his office opposing his vote knows that — his snotty little right-wing staffers ridicule you and tell you you’re stupid. I don’t hear any apologies about that — and we’re paying their salaries!

(You also may remember that Pat Toomey was also a one-man wall of obstruction for the safety equipment that would have stopped the horrible Amtrak crash last year. That makes him a right-wing you-know-what in my book.)

Second, I think you probably know we wouldn’t be having this discussion if a male candidate called his opponent an “asshole.” Especially if he was.

Third, Katie McGinty calling Pat Toomey what he is is no, not even a little comparable to the kinds of things Donald Trump routinely says. And we should be furious at a compliant media that lets Republicans tie them together. That would let a gun-loving fake moderate like Toomey hide behind McGinty’s slip of the tongue.


For the Last Time: Here’s Proof the Democratic Primary Wasn’t Rigged Against Bernie Sanders

Following the “controversy” over the DNC email hack, some Bernie Sanders supporters are infuriated again, claiming that these emails “prove” there was a conspiracy against the senator from Vermont that “rigged” the Democratic primary for Hillary Clinton. style=”display:inline-block;width:336px;height:280px” data-ad-client=”ca-pub-8278450341216875″ data-ad-slot=”8820921792″> Look, if you’re someone who truly and honestly believes that these elections were literally rigged, with… Continue Reading →


Bernie gets booed

Seen on Facebook: “The current political situation is akin to being held up in a cabin with a hoard of zombies at the door, and someone in your group is freaking out that there’s a moth in the closet.”

I said all along that some of the things Bernie said were so negative, there might be no turning back.

Yesterday, when he spoke to a large group at the DNC and urged his supporters to support the Clinton/Kaine ticket, he was booed.

Bernie looked surprised. I wasn’t. I said all along that teaching an entire generation that the Democratic party (and Hillary) were hopelessly corrupt and that Bernie was the only one who could save us presented some serious general election problems — namely, how do you create unity when you’ve so effectively created division?

When his supporters boo, they prove they’re not part of a political movement but only a personality cult. Bernie did not train his troops. He did not explain the long-term goals, or the realistic achievements. He sold them the moon, and now they’re angry.

He has proved that he’s not really a leader, after all. He tried helplessly to get them to behave, and they ignored him.

Here is what I want to say to the Bernie holdouts (and understand, it’s a relatively small group — 85% of them are rallying around Hillary):

This is bigger than you. If you don’t understand the urgency of stopping the Orange Hitler, you are hopelessly naive. This is someone who, quite literally, has the support of the former head of the KGB. Why?

Think about that.

We not only need to win the White House, we need to turn out such a decisive victory that Republicans are crushed for years to come. We will need every single vote we can muster.

This is a pivotal moment in our history. Pay attention to the big picture, not your feelings.


Political change is not just about character

Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine

I’ve been saying this for a long time: Politics means I don’t care whether you believe in what I’m asking you to do, only that you do it. That’s politics. Enough people demand something, eventually you get it.

I have no patience with people who say that getting what you want isn’t enough. The person must also become a convert. Oh, please.

What a lot of the hand wringers are saying about Clinton is just plain silly. It’s a very different world from the DLC era. You really think she wants to impose 90’s-style triangulation onto a completely different environment? She’s not stupid.

We have a country now where real progressive change is not only possible, but likely. There is the political room to get this done, especially if we take back both houses.

That was the probable thinking behind the Tim Kaine selection. He will help pull in more southern voters, making it easier to take both houses. It was a smart move. I don’t know if you watched his speech, but he’s going to be great. (And by the way, he’s the civil rights activist that Bernie only pretended to be.)

Donald Trump is a very dangerous man. Please don’t tell me about your protest vote for Gary Johnson or Jill Stein, I won’t respect you for taking that position in a time of national peril. We don’t just need to stop Trump, we need to crush him — and the rest of the Republican party with him.

We need to build an electoral wall, and we will need every damn brick.


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