Thursday, October 20, 2016

Things We Learned From the Final Presidential Debate of 2016

1) Trump thinks he should have won an Emmy.

2) Trump still can't stop himself from interrupting people. Not just Hillary - which he clearly does out of spite - but also the moderator Chris Wallace, which Trump did out of narcissism.

3) The turnaround time on making t-shirts, buttons, posters, and other marketing materials is close to magic today. Within HOURS, Hillary's fanbase was selling tees of "Nasty Women" to crow against Trump's tin-eared attempt to insult her.

4) Thank God for the baseball postseason.

4a) Cleveland Indians are in the World Series. Chicago Cubs tied up with the Dodgers and may be back on track to win the NL title. We may be facing a World Series in which one sad-sack team FINALLY WINS.

This is, of course, the Seventh Seal harkening the End Times.

5) Trump kept lying last night like an unrepentant muthafu.......

6) Saturday Night Live is kinda at the point where they don't have to write a script, they just have to read the original transcripts of the debate and react accordingly. For example, there's a specific moment last night where Kate McKinnon should just break out the celebratory wine bottle during the inevitable cold open skit.

7) Trump is still an idiot.

8) Trump is still incredibly scary on foreign policy issues, especially Putin and other dictators he admires.

9) The biggest fallout from that debate has been Trump's refusal to accept the results of the November 8th election night if it goes against him. This ties into the last week or so of Trump yelling that the election "is rigged" in a direct attempt to undermine the entire process. When asked about if he will concede if he loses during the debate, Trump's vague answer was "I will look at it at the time. What I’ve seen, what I’ve seen is so bad."

And during today's rallies post-debate, Trump added with a horrifying condition: "I will totally accept the election results... if I win."

He's essentially saying the only legit result of the election should be HIM winning, even if he loses by 7 percent of the popular vote and with Hillary trouncing him in the Electoral College 342-196. And he's encouraging his voter base to think the same way.

This is insane. Trump is taking a flamethrower to the entire integrity of the electoral process, which he can't prove is that corrupt and broken - rigging a Presidential election is actually so large-scale and complex that it's next to impossible - but he still tries to sell as such.

10) Hillary essentially won all three debates by presenting herself as informed, composed, confident, and prepared. They weren't the best debate performances of all time - Hillary still tries to talk to people like a college professor and can't really be as relaxed in her presentation - but compared to the sniffling, bloated, rude, ill-informed mockery of a candidate next to her, she hit home runs all three nights.

Get the damn vote out, America. Early voting is already starting in some states and should be going on everywhere by next week (Florida's starts on the 24th).

Vote Hillary for President. Don't vote Republican for ANY office if you can help it.

This election matters.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Things To Do For Tonight's Final Presidential Debate for 2016

Tonight is the last televised debate between Hillary and "Screw You Guys I'm Going Home" Trump.

Here are your options for tonight's viewing:

1) Find a writers' group meeting to attend tonight and get prepped for your upcoming NaNoWriMo writing effort for November.

2) There's playoff baseball on tonight, I think.

3) Are hairstyle salons open at 9:00 PM EST?

4) Find a pro-Hillary debate watch party in your area and bring enough booze to endure the Trump-shitshow but not enough to prevent you from safely driving home. Either that or make sure there's a designated driver to come by after the debate to pick you up. I doubt anybody at the party is going to want to stay sober watching that draft-dodging tax-dodging tiny-fingered Cheeto-faced ferret-wearing shitgibbon.

5) You might wanna start shopping at the local CostCo for your winter survival supplies and tonight might as well be the time to do it.

6) Read a book. I've got some lovely books you can purchase and download to your Kindle... (ow stop hitting me)

7) Watch sober, and then get on your knees and pray. BEG FORGIVENESS FROM THE ALMIGHTY that we as a nation were fools to let Trump anywhere near the Presidency and BEG BEG BEG a thousand times for the Good Lord to show Mercy upon us by gifting enough voters with the wisdom to NOT VOTE TRUMP when their time in the ballot booth comes.

7a) And for the Love of God don't vote Republican, period.

Keep your head down and survive, America. We're going to get hit by the eye of this Trumpstorm...

Monday, October 17, 2016

Republicans Don't Give a Rat's Ass About the Constitution Anymore

(Update: Thank you Batocchio for the link on Crooks & Liars' Mike's Blog Round-Up! To everyone visiting, hello again. Please stay and check out my other rants about Gods help us everything about this election cycle. And please, sign up for NaNoWriMo and write your damn novels next November!)

You lost me, McCain, a long time ago, but this just really hurts:

Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) suggested Monday that the Republican party’s months-long refusal to fill a vacant seat on the Supreme Court could extend into the next administration if Hillary Clinton is elected president.
"I promise you that we will be united against any Supreme Court nominee that Hillary Clinton, if she were president, would put up," McCain said on WPHT Philadelphia radio in an interview first flagged by CNN. "I promise you. This is where we need the majority.”

McCain essentially promised that the Republicans in the Senate will not uphold their oath of office to the Constitution.

He promised to put party partisanship ahead of the needs of the United States to have judicial offices filled in order to ensure our legal system is working.

He promised to ignore the constitutional powers of the President to nominate people to fill vacancies in the court system. He promised to ignore the reality that a President Clinton would win election with a sizable number of American voters.

He promised that if Hillary Clinton wins with lets say 60 million votes to lets say 50 million Trump votes, he and his fellow Republicans will tell those 60 million voters that their vote did not ever count, that their choice wasn't legitimate, that they will never listen to or respect those voters.

He promised to continue the obstruction that this current Republican-controlled Senate has been carrying on for almost a year now, refusing to even LISTEN to Supreme Court nominee Garland, operating on a laughable and possibly illegal argument that the Senate should "hold off" on allowing a lame-duck President during his last year in office from filling any vacancies: That the Senate should "respect the wishes of the voters during an election year." Yet if those voters go with Clinton, well they'll just ignore THIS YEAR'S promise and move on to this new promise of NEVER advising and consenting to a Democratic nominee ever again.

That's what this promise is about: McCain is laying out in public the truth that the Republican Party will never accept any Democratic President as legitimate, no matter how many people vote for that Democrat, no matter how the Constitution requires them to at least respect the Office of the Presidency.

This is absolute partisanship. McCain and his fellow Republican Senators are kicking their Constitution duties into the dumpster. It won't matter if Hillary wins by three percent or double-digits. The Republicans in Congress will obstruct her for as long as they possibly can.

THIS is why I've been screaming for the last 8-10 years to never vote Republican. Doesn't matter the office, if it's Dog Catcher or State legislator or US Congress or the Senate or President. This is the attitude of the entire GOP: THEY must rule or else everything will be in ruins.

THIS is why it's just as important for people to get out the vote to kick every Republican out of every elected office. It's not just the Presidency at stake, America: EVERY office needs purging of obstructionist Republicans who WILL NOT DO THEIR JOBS.

Every Republican Senator up for election this cycle needs to lose. Every Republican Congresscritter up for election this 2016 needs to lose, to hell with their gerrymandered safe zones. If the GOP retains majority control of the Senate, we will never see ANY vacancy - not on the Courts, not in the Cabinet - filled as required by the Constitution. If the GOP retains majority control of the House, we will never see ANY sane federal budget and will likely see series of government shutdowns by a Far Right Congress insisting on their godless tax cuts for the super-rich.

You wanna know why government's not working? JUST LISTEN TO THE REPUBLICANS. They will tell you: THEY DON'T WANT IT TO WORK. They would rather let it rust away, block every fix, block every qualified candidate. They would rather let the nation suffer for their self-serving needs than compromise or do their jobs.

For the LOVE OF GOD, stop voting Republican. They sure as hell have not earned your vote.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

But That Was Another Country, and Besides That Party Is Dead

Me: Friends, Bloggers, Countrymen, lend me your ears.

Pinku-Sensei: What happened to the ears we lent you last week?

Me: Well I stuck them to my chariot.

Dinthebeast: But why?

Me: 'Cause they're chariot ears.

(much pummeling commences)

Fine, fine, I'll get serious here.

I come to bury the Republican Party, if to praise its worth before the madness struck in 1992 um 1980 okay 1968. It's at the point in our history now that with Trump sinking in the polls with no sign of recovery, and with growing likelihood that the Democrats regain the Senate and may even regain the House, we need to start wondering just what the hell the remnants of the GOP is going to do post-Election Day.

If I can hedge my bets, if Trump does indeed pull of an upset now - unlikely, not enough states will vote for him - the Party is still screwed because the twisted mindset Trump brings to the table would honestly bankrupt the party (and the nation).

If Hillary wins with a solid Republican Congress, the Party is still doomed because their ongoing obstructionist habits can't last (the demographics are finally turning against them).

And a big reason the Republicans are doomed happens because - for what I see of the party today - there is no sound or diverse leadership that can lead the party out of their blind obsessions. Whatever you think of Paul Ryan as Speaker, he's doomed. The same wingnut faction within his own House that ousted Boehner is going to want his scalp for "lack of fealty" to Trump and his failure to bring Obama (or Hillary) before them in handcuffs. And then things get nasty: Who can you picture among the elected leadership in the GOP taking control of this rampaging beast? Trey Gowdy?!

Don't take my word for it. Let's ask Bruce Bartlett at the Washington Post:

I was wrong. I now see that Trump’s candidacy has exacerbated the Republican Party’s weaknesses, alienating minorities, fracturing the base and stunting smart policy development. The party’s structural problems are so severe that reform is impossible. Even if Trump loses and the GOP races to forget him, the party is doomed. And very few of our leaders seem to care.
In the short run, it will be easy for Republicans to convince themselves that nothing needs to change. The establishment believes that Trump is an anomaly, an aberration. GOP leaders think the party’s next nominee will be a more typical politician who knows the issues, has well-developed debating skills and who will appeal to the elite and the Trumpkins. Someone like John Kasich or Marco Rubio...

You can already see the problem of leadership: Kasich and Rubio are NOT sound options for future leadership. Kasich doesn't appeal to the base (which is crazy because Kasich is a solid Right Winger) and Rubio's an empty-suit no-show at the job. And Trump is not an anomaly: He fit exactly what the Republican voting base wanted. You can't ignore that fact, not ever...

Back to Bartlett:

Many leaders also assume that Hillary Clinton is an automatic One-Termer. They think she’s incompetent, scandal-ridden and hell-bent on destroying the economy. They know, too, that neither party has held the White House for more than three terms in the post-World War II era.

Incompetent, no. Scandal-ridden, only because the GOP leadership made her so. And despite their differences in ideology, nothing Hillary promises will crash the economy the way the Republicans' Supply Side obsessions have done.

Let's take a serious look at history for a moment: the possibility of Hillary as a One-Termer. That is likely: Historically speaking there's been few back-to-back Two-Termers. However, those back-to-backs happened at a time - Jefferson, Madison, Monroe - when the two-party system died as the Federalists slid from power. And the Federalists died because - as the Republicans are finding out now - they failed to adapt and alienated a majority of voters outside of their regional power-base.

The Republicans came into this election cycle thinking that it was normal for parties to switch control of the White House like clockwork. It's not. Historically, parties retain control of the Presidency due to two things: 1) solid economic growth/stability or 2) terrible opposing parties. The Democrats stayed in control from Jefferson to Jackson thanks to the fall of the Federalists. The Whigs beat Van Buren because of the first major economic Panic caused by Jackson's bank-breaking. Republicans held onto the White House from 1860 to 1884 thanks to the Democrats being associated with treason (except for a stolen 1876 election, which still spoke to a weak Democratic Party unable to fight it out). Republicans retained the White House after Grover Cleveland's interruptions from McKinley to Taft due to the Yukon Gold Rush, Teddy's Progressive movement, and Taft's judicial sensibilities. The Democrats held on through an unheard-of four terms of FDR because the Great Depression was that huge an economic crisis and because of the Second World War, with Truman continuing that control on his own terms only getting kicked out because of a mismanaged Korean War and major recession at the time.

Basically, there's no predictable cycle of party control of the White House. For the Republicans to buy into that myth highlights part of their myopia.

Okay, enough side-track. Back to Bartlett:

But Clinton’s chances of being reelected in 2020 are better than Republicans think. Already, Democrats have a virtual lock on 18 states, giving them an almost automatic 242 electoral votes. States such as Virginia, Colorado and Florida routinely vote Democratic, too.

The Republicans wanted to fight their electoral battles using Demographics and Geography instead of the Issues. Well, now that's killing them. They've done such a wonderful job trying to sell their Southern Strategy to states that can't condone that kind of mindset that the Southern states are the only ones they might have left (and they're losing Georgia either this cycle or the next).

I've pointed out earlier that when it comes to guaranteed, lock-down states the Democratic Party (California, New York, Illinois with 104 EV) has a massive advantage over Republicans (Texas at 38 EV) that by the time you throw in the mid-sized states - Massachusetts (11), Pennsylvania (20), Maryland (10), Washington (12), Virginia (13) and Michigan (16) guaranteed for 72 additional EV to Democrats - that the next guaranteed state for the GOP with Tennessee (11 EV) doesn't help one bit.

There is currently no way for Republicans to break the strangleholds that the Democrats have on those Solid Blue states. The only way to do that is to change their messaging and ideology: The platform the GOP is selling now - anti-Immigrant, anti-women - gets them NOWHERE in California at all. (edit) Conversely, the Democrats can break the stranglehold Republicans have on Texas - their last main Electoral College anchor - simply by waiting for enough Latinos and women voters to ragequit the GOP over the Republicans' terrible ideology. And that can happen now or 2020. It's already just a matter of time...

Okay, just one more visit to Bartlett:

Eventually, of course, Democrats will become corrupt, will overreach or will bear the blame for things beyond their control, like a recession. They may foolishly nominate someone too far Left for the country, giving a Republican another shot at the White House. A strong leader could change the GOP’s trajectory, like Dwight Eisenhower did after five straight Republican presidential losses from 1932 to 1948. He put the party, as Conservative then as it is today (just read the 1952 platform) on a more Moderate, technocratic path that continued for a quarter-century through Richard Nixon (note: snerk) and Gerald Ford. A leader like Eisenhower might help right the GOP, attracting moderate voters and enhancing the party’s crossover appeal.

Wouldn't it be pretty to think so? That the Republicans could eventually lose their Far Right mindset and find another Eisenhower? If there is a GOP Savior to be had among the pandering Tax-Cut Slashers leading the party today (hint: there isn't)?

It's just not any time soon. Here's blogger PM Carpenter looking at how deluded the "rational" conservative leadership among the bloggers are going to be:

...What, then, is next for the GOP? Fortunate it is that Erick Erickson, formerly of, troubles to offer a template. Most unfortunate, however, is that his articulated vision as a fresh model is damn near incomprehensible.
Erickson's vision for his erstwhile party? It's the old Get-Washington-out-of-our-lives trope. "Voters are being held hostage by hollow promises … [that] Washington power will make their lives better," he writes. Washington was never meant "to be the center of all solutions. Republicans need to focus less on Washington and more on fostering local community..."

There's a slight problem with that: The Republicans have been shilling this "End Washington Control" snake-oil for 40 years. There is nothing new here. It's the same bland marketing ploy without even a fresh coat of paint on it.

Okay, back to PM trout-slapping Erickson:

One point he's inarguably missing is that, prior to the federal government's being what it is today, neighbors and churches and communities found themselves abjectly incapable of providing needed help in tough times. Prior to minimum wages, prior to Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and the entire panoply of federal safety nets, local communities and state governments were far too strapped and overburdened to be of service to the acutely burdened themselves...
All this, Erickson dismisses, probably more from - I'll be charitable - willful blindness than innate fatuity...
Our former RedStater goes on to propose that a new Republicanism be "the party of religious liberty," as though religious Democrats and confirmed atheists aren't all for that...
And of course Erickson throws in the old Republican bugaboo of yet "lower taxes," which would of course would further gut the inarguable effectiveness of all the federal government does, which of course Erickson chooses not to see.
In short, little to none of what Erickson proposes is realistic. It's the same, old, unworkable model of reactionary smallness - the very refusal to cope with modern civilization that has plagued Republicanism for decades...

If Erickson's model for recovery is the only thing the Republicans have to work with, it's going to be the same damn mess that will fall apart again in 2020. No lessons learned, the same mistakes played over and over again expecting better outcomes. And most likely another con artist candidate trying to sell it all.

This is why I've called the Republican Party mad for years. And incompetent to boot.

Infidel753: Well, that wasn't much of a spectacle!

Batocchio: That wasn't even a monocle! Ho-ho-ho-ho!

Blog Status October 2016

Just saying:

I wanna thank everybody visiting my blog to read up on the Florida 2016 General Election info. Damn, you are just blowing my stat numbers out of the water.

Now if I can just entice you all to buy my b... no wait come back! I want more visits! Please... /sniff  It gets so lonely sometimes...

What if I try to find my bad comic strips from my USF student days of 1992 and scan them in? Will you all come back for that?

What If: Hillary Wins AND Gets a Friendly Congress for 2017

I've speculated already about how it would look if Donald Trump won the Presidency.

It wasn't pretty. And my speculation wasn't the only one.

So, with Trump now stuck in polling below 40 percent and the likelihood Hillary secures all of the Obama 2012 states (plus Arizona and North Carolina and MAYBE Georgia, Texas and Utah!), we now need to speculate about what it would look like if Hillary won.
I will keep Texas - barely - on the Republican side, but if Latino
turnout rocks that house, it would be an epic GOP collapse.
I REALLY want Georgia to flip Blue...
Click the map to create your own at

Okay, Republicans, deep breaths, stop panicking, oh c'mon for the love Flying Spaghetti Monster you SURVIVED Bill and Obama for decades, settle the hell down...

Anyway, previous prediction of post-election posing was that if Hillary wins but Republicans retain control of Congress, we'll likely be in the same obstructive gridlock the GOP has enforced on this nation since 2010 (and in a lesser form in 2009 when they abused Cloture rules in the Senate). Given the outright hatred the Republicans will have towards Hillary - and their belief that they have enough "criminal" charges on her - the possibility of constant Congressional investigations into every little move she makes is a near-lock.

On the bright side, the likely scenario is that the Republicans can lose the Senate - out of 34 seats open, the numbers suggest the Democrats can pull off a 52-54 seat majority - giving Democrats a chance to break the gridlock on Supreme Court nominations and other Judiciary/Executive vacancies that are in dire need of filling.

While the polling doesn't reflect any serious victory for Democrats in flipping the House, this is a "What If" scenario so let's go there: What if Trump's anger towards the GOP Establishment convinces his voting base to reject the down-ballot tickets to where Republicans lose a lot of seats? What if, thanks to a divided Republican party, the House goes from 234 Republicans over 201 Democrats and goes 220 D - 215 R?

It's not much, it'll be a slim hold on the House of Representatives, and there's always a chance some Democrats will vote against the party line - in this situation the backbenchers will have disproportionate control on some issues - but this version of the universe will give Hillary a Congress basically willing to grant her as much of her agenda as she'll want.

What does that actually mean?

Hillary's platform would be called a standard "liberal" agenda. She's on record supporting a Public Option fix to the ACA (Obamacare), a massive infrastructure budget to repair our aging highways and bridges, closing tax loopholes for the rich and for corporations, protecting Planned Parenthood, and boosting public education. Her biggest controversial issue is over gun safety laws that the NRA would never accept.

What we'd likely see in 2017 with Hillary and a Democratic Congress is a sweeping stimulus package covering massive construction projects - road, bridges, transit systems, schools, power grids - combined with moderate hikes in the tax rates for upper income earners (and possibly forcing the megacorps into bringing back all those tax dollars they're hiding overseas) to pay for it. While the Republicans will squeal in outrage over it and may try to block it in the Senate, there's every likelihood Hillary - using that Johnson-esque A-N worldview of hers - will get it pushed through.

The question will become "what impact will Hillary and the Democrats - no longer restrained by conservative austerity anti-spending efforts - have on the overall economy of the next four years?"

This is key, because economic performance is ALWAYS the best way for a sitting President to win a second term. As long as the economy works or improves, the incumbents are safe. Only during economic uncertainty - especially major downturns like a Recession similar to 2008's - will the sitting party get hit with electoral losses.

As long as Hillary can build on the slow rebuilding that Obama oversaw and lowers the unemployment down to a health 4 percent while seeing gains in wages and reductions in personal debts -THIS is what Hillary and the Democrats should focus on - then she's a lock to win a second term in 2020 (despite the fantasies of the GOP, more on that later).

So I would totally predict a Hillary administration is going to see a long, stretched-out battle against the banks by the Democrats to work on cutting back on debt-causing matters like college loans, mortgages, and the like.

There's also the likelihood of long, stretched-out battles against any Republican-controlled state government over state-level funding issues and economic cost-of-living issues surrounding city/county zoning laws (that last part might even involve a few Democratic states too).

In terms of domestic policy, the Pro-People agenda that Obama solidified in 2011-12 will made concrete. Gay Marriage and other Gay/Transgender rights under a full Democratic federal government will be made moreso, even against any Republican state-level obstruction like the "bathroom safety" and "gay cake" laws. Hillary is bound to fill more court vacancies - even Supreme Court ones - with Left-leaning progressive justices, adding to the Right-leaning (but not wingnut) judges already placing small-c conservative rulings on these issues. There's also increased odds of better pro-Women rulings on birth control, health care, child care and job protection/wage improvements. As well as the likelihood civil rights for Blacks, Latinos and minorities in general will be safe for the next decade (and one day permanent).

On foreign policy, Hillary will deal on fair terms with her allies without fear of a Republican Senate trying to knee-cap her. She is more aggressive on foreign issues which may mean an increase in direct interventions with land troops, but she may be tempered by a more Progressive Congress - especially in the House - that would seek to clamp down on any military misadventures.

Whether Hillary continues some of Obama's more questionable practices - especially drone "warfare" and the surveillance state - depends entirely on Congress. It is up to Congress to set the laws on these matters, and one hopes that a more Left-leaning legislature will set stricter guidelines and oversight. But let's be honest: every President - even Obama, and he's a good guy - cannot willingly give up such legally grey powers. It's going to be a fight if the Progressives push this issue.

While all this happens, you can guarantee the Far Right media will not roll over and play dead. Fox Not-News, Rush, Drudge, every wingnut with a video stream and a book deal is going to be at DefCon 1 claiming Hillary is destroying America. The other media outlets - CNN, MSNBC, ESPN - may find themselves at war with conservative talking heads trying to dominate for air time on the nightly roundtables, but if they have any sense or decency the major outlets need to ween themselves off that Far Right Noise and invite actual experts to their shows anymore. If we're lucky, a Democratic sweep this November might wipe out every favorite Congressional Republican guest - sorry, McCain - and force the networks to invite more elected Democrats for a change.

To anybody who thinks a Hillary win combined with a Democratic Congressional win is going to lead to the End Times: yeah, stop listening to the wingnuts. We've seen years of Democratic control - 2009 to 2010, 1993-1994 - and we never had A) massive arrests of all citizens, B) alien takeovers, C) the Rapture. Lighten the fuck up, wingnuts. Hillary may be talking about gun safety laws but that doesn't mean SHE'S COMIN TO TAKE OUR GUNZ. Hillary can't abolish the 2nd Amendment - that takes Congress, two-thirds of both houses, AS WELL AS two-thirds of the states - so take that fantasy off the list. At WORST you gun-nuts, Hillary is going to press for a re-interpretation of that amendment to recognize gun safety ("well-regulated") outweighs unlimited gun usage ("shall not be infringed"). What Hillary's gonna do is make it harder for the NRA to turn a profit on our kids getting shot.

The concerns about militia violence are legit, but we should recognize that a mass majority of Americans are not THAT violent. Losing the Presidential race may cause a lot of sound and fury, and of course losing Congress will make it worse, but it will only go so far. The wingnuts will talk about coups and secession and whatnot, but most of them will just go home and gripe about how bad it all is and wait for the next scandal to prove themselves right (note: there may be certain circumstances that might escalate that from talk to action...). That said, I hope the FBI and Homeland Security redouble their efforts on tracking and shutting down the homegrown terror militia groups already waging war on our nation.

So that's how it will kind of look once 2017 rolls onto the computer clocks.

It also depends on if that year's summer blockbuster lineup will be actually any fun. For that I will blame Obama, though.

As We Head Into the Round of Early Voting for 2016

Just in brief, a few things:

It's nice to see Hillary is still ahead of Trump in the polls - we should look at the four-way numbers since Johnson is pulling enough of a percentage to cause a dent in the results - but just remember, polling is one thing TURNOUT is what matters.

Here in Florida, things are looking up: Democrats are doing better with absentee ballot filings and with voter registration. Again, TURNOUT MATTERS. Get the damn vote out, people, we need to stop Trump and slap the Republicans down a few notches in Congress and state offices.

There's this growing feeling both online and in the Real World that people may be tired of this circus, that it's gone on for far too long with this clown Trump ruining many a life. But there's also this sense that people will show up to vote because they know this will put a stake into this vampiric nightmare and let most of us sleep easier after November 8th.


Wednesday, October 12, 2016

They Hit That Iceberg Three Months Ago. This Is Where the RNC Trumptanic Is Breaking In Half

I wrote this back in March:

On the other hand, this dynamic clearly can no longer exist. The people in control of the Republican Party - the financial donors, the seasoned consultants, the elected veterans of too many Congressional terms - are no longer in sync with their actual voting base of low-education poor White Males. It turns out all the fearmongering and Establishment-bashing the party elites kept telling their followers via the Far Right news channels and websites made those followers fear and hate their own self-entitled party bosses. It's all leading up to the near certainty of a thin-skinned, narcissistic con artist pitching the basest form of race-baiting and immigrant-bashing by the name of Trump winning enough delegates this week to clinch a commanding lead for the Republican nomination for President.
This is the kind of personal betrayal in a relationship that ends up with both sides in tears...
All said and done though, I doubt the GOP really blows apart. Neither side of this potential break-up will last long outside of the existing organizational charts...

Well, color me optimistic.

Donald Trump declared war on the Republican establishment Tuesday, lashing out at House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (Wis.), Sen. John McCain (Ariz.) and other GOP elected officials as his supporters geared up to join the fight amid extraordinary turmoil within the party just four weeks before Election Day.
One day after Ryan announced he would no longer campaign on Trump’s behalf, the GOP nominee said as part of a barrage of tweets that the top-ranking Republican is “weak and ineffective” and is providing “zero support” for his candidacy. Trump also declared that “the shackles have been taken off” him, liberating him to “fight for America the way I want to...”
...But (the Republican leadership) are suddenly dealing with another problem: an impulsive and bellicose businessman with an army of loyal supporters willing to exact retribution against elected officials they feel have abandoned them. The rift could have profound ramifications for the Republican Party as a whole, shattering any sense of unity and jeopardizing its chances of holding onto the Senate and even, potentially, the House...

The logic Ryan and the other senior Republicans are working from is trying to isolate themselves from the sinking ship that is Trump's Presidential hopes. The polling after the first two debates have swung wide towards Hillary. The 2005 Hollywood Access tape where Trump boasts of sexually assaulting women and getting away with it for being a rich celebrity was a shocking rebuke to the Republicans' failed attempts to sell themselves as the high-ground moralists.

The public response to that video has been harsh, and among women voters it's been the final straw to dump Trump. Considering women voters make up the largest voting bloc in terms of turnout, the Republicans who take polling serious are trying to find a safe spot to keep their cushy incumbent jobs.

Problem is, in the process Ryan and the others risk alienating their own Republican voting base. Trump's not thrilled about the "betrayal" from Ryan or McCain or any of the others, and Trump's staffers and proxies are all selling the idea of ignoring the down-ballot seats... meaning no votes for the Senate and House candidates up for election.

Given that their gerrymandered districts are skewed in order to exploit their Far Right voting base, having that base refuse to show up and vote for you - which is what Trump is asking them to do - makes such "safe" districts useless to House Republicans. The 55 percent "safe district" advantage over the Democrats' 27 percent disappears and every Red district is in play.

The Ace of Spades - Far Rightist blogger - site is already calling on Ryan's Wisconsin voters to tab the Democratic candidate in revenge.

As long as the Democrats can encourage voter turnout greater than Republican turnout, the odds of winning the Senate alongside Hillary winning the Presidency become much likelier. If Trump voters stick to their anger against ANY Establishment figure that failed in their fealty, the odds of Republicans losing the US House (and a lot more state legislatures) also becomes likelier.

This is where the sinking ship isn't just with Trump at the helm, it's with half the Republican Party queuing for the lifeboats as the good ship RNC Trumptanic snaps in two during the sinking. (Yes, I am totally stealing this meme from The Daily Show)

The only thing that can save the Republican Party entirely is the ingrained partisan nature of their own voters to habitually vote (R) no matter what. Ryan may be counting on that to pull out enough support to eke out their survival and remain as incumbents.

But all it takes is a big enough drop in turnout to kill the incumbents.

And they're already booing Ryan at his rallies. Their own Speaker.

Eric Cantor probably should call Ryan in a few weeks to offer his condolences.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

In 28 Days, We Vote For Real. In the Meantime, Here's Women Beating the Crap Out of Trump

I think I kept warning people about alienating the largest voting bloc in the nation. But nooooooo, the Republicans just HAD to keep ticking them off.

And now we're seeing the results in the polling. Per the Atlantic:

That’s the bad news for Trump. The worse news is that this poll likely does not include the full impact of a video, published Friday afternoon by The Washington Post, in which Trump boasts about sexually assaulting women. The poll was conducted Wednesday through Sunday, meaning some respondents were interviewed before the video’s release and some afterward. It also does not take into account the second presidential debate, in which Trump’s performance drew widely varying reviews (hint: the pundits liked it, the polled viewers sided with Hillary)...
...Clinton also continues to lead Trump by hefty margins among women, with a 33-point gap separating the candidates. Just 28 percent of likely women voters intend to pull the lever for Trump, a five-point drop from one week ago, while 61 percent plan to vote for Clinton. The lewd video of Trump might lead to an even greater gap in the home stretch toward the election.
Even more remarkably, Trump’s support has collapsed among white women without college degrees. Until recently, they formed Trump’s largest bloc of support. In 2004, they voted for George W. Bush by 19 points; in 2008, they backed John McCain by 17 points; and in 2012, they went with Mitt Romney by 20 points. This poll finds them evenly split between Clinton and Trump, with each drawing 40 percent support.

Here's Sober Nate Silver with his take:

But while we’re in something of a wait-and-see mode, one demographic split caught my eye. That was from a Public Religion Research Institute poll conducted on behalf of The Atlantic. It showed a massive gender split, with Clinton trailing Trump by 11 percentage points among men but leading him by 33 points among women. To put those numbers in perspective, that’s saying Trump would defeat Clinton among men by a margin similar to Dwight D. Eisenhower’s landslide victory over Adlai Stevenson in 1952, while Clinton would defeat Trump among women by a margin similar to … actually, there’s no good comparison, since no candidate has won a presidential election by more than 26 percentage points since the popular vote became a widespread means of voting in 1824. To get to 33 points, you’d have to take the Eisenhower-Stevenson margin and add Lyndon B. Johnson’s 23-point win over Barry Goldwater in 1964 on top of it...

Silver then postulates what the numbers might look like on a map. If you just went with ONLY Women voting this cycle, the map would look like this:

The ONLY Men map goes the other way, obviously, with Trump winning...

So obviously the solution is we need more women voters.

Granted, polling does not equal actual results: You gotta play the game to see who wins. But the data leading up to Game Day is all pointing towards more voters turning away from Trump, and with voting groups turning in great numbers that suggest a nationwide trend. Meaning that most the states - where the Electoral College retains its power - are in play for Hillary, unlike previous election cycles where certain Red States would stay Red due to the Demographics no matter what.

As such, the Electoral College map we're looking at for November 8th should look like this:

And the math is tight in places like Arizona and Georgia (and yes Texas) so this map is still a bit... conservative in predicting the Electoral votes. And there's also the bit about the Mormons finally in open rebellion against Trump's vulgarity. so there's a good chance Utah is a Toss-Up for once.

So barring massive voter suppression efforts - which hopefully doesn't affect enough states, and may not happen on large enough a scale if the Democrats' ground game is ready to roll - or outright refusal to vote, we should be looking at a massive Trump loss for the Presidency. If there's any justice in the world, Trump's sinking ship will be an epic enough collapse that it will drag enough Republican Senators and Congresspersons down with him. Which is looking likelier - even for the gerrymandered House! - by the day.


We have 28 days to survive this.

Monday, October 10, 2016

I Had to RageQuit a Debate Watch Party Last Night

The local organized Hillary office was hosting a watch party for the town-hall format debate this Sunday night, so I decided to be sociable.

I brought an apple pie.

Sat around with about 20 people to watch the Internet stream of CNN. Sat solemnly while the debate organizers spent about half an hour explaining the rules and need for decorum. A lot of attention was paid toward showcasing how these debates "demonstrate to the whole world how a democracy operates."

And then they let Trump out to show how he'll tear it all down.

Dear F-CKING God. Trump could not answer the questions straight. He'd go off on tangents, jumping to talking points that didn't relate, and ending up pointing at Hillary going "she's worse, people. She'll wreck all of it, believe me."

The opening question on campaign decorum turned into Trump attacking Obamacare. It went downhill from there.

And he lied, sonofabitch did Trump lie during this town hall. He couldn't even keep the number of "deleted e-mails" straight.

When it got to the part where Trump went off on his taxes "Oh I pay millions in taxes" I was thisclose to dropping every F-bomb I had and punching out the walls. It was either that or walking out of the watch party in a rage.

So for that, I apologize to my fellow watchers.

It was just... GOD DAMN TRUMP.

Here's the biggest takeaway I got from last night:

If he's elected, Trump is going to jail Hillary. He openly declared this on the debate floor. I think this is a first in all of American History. Granted, we haven't had many years of head-to-head debates - we really started with Nixon vs. JFK in 1960, and didn't make these debates official until 1976 - but I can't recall in my studies ANY other Presidential candidate threatening to arrest his political opponents as a campaign pledge.

That's something dictators do. That's not at all representative of the Democracy Experience we're supposed to be displaying to the world.

Damn Trump. And Damn US if enough of us voters back this con artist into the White House. We're getting every warning red flag possible about the damage Trump can do if he's in power, and he's STILL getting 40 percent support?!