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Bernie’s win in Indiana proves that Billary’s brand of Democrat is still weak

Reuters photo

Bernie Sanders and his wife Jane appear at a campaign rally in Louisville, Kentucky, today. Thus far in the tallying, per Politico, Bernie has won 53 percent of Indiana’s vote to Billary Clinton’s 47 percent, not enabling him to put a significant dent in Billary’s lead in pledged delegates (delegates won in presidential primary elections and caucuses), but certainly demonstrating that he still can win a populous state and that a sizable chunk of the Democratic and Democratic-leaning electorate still wants him, and not Billary, to lead the party and the nation.

Bernie Sanders’ presidential-primary-election win in Indiana today, coming on the heels of his loss in New York two weeks ago and his winning only one of five states that were up for grabs a week ago, is great but also a bit cruel, as it remains close to impossible for him to go into the party convention in late July with more pledged delegates than Billary Clinton — and that was his best argument for the super-delegates to vote for him instead of Billary.

As I type this sentence, Bernie’s estimated pledged delegate count is 1,370 to Billary’s estimated 1,665, a difference of 295 that Bernie is highly unlikely to surmount with the only nine more states to go (plus D.C.).

That said, again, every state that Bernie wins is a state that Billary didn’t win. Yeah, I know, deep, but, again, this hasn’t been just a battle for the Democratic Party presidential nomination, but has been a battle for the direction — and the soul — of the party itself.

Bernie very probably won’t win the nomination, but when he has won as many states as he has — and here they are, mapped out in green (to Billary’s puke yellow):

File:Democratic Party presidential primaries results, 2016.svg

WikipediaWikipedia graphic

— he can’t be called a “fringe” candidate, especially given how this has been his first crack at the White House.

Bernie thus far has won 45 percent of the pledged delegates to Billary’s 55 percent — again, this puts him well out of “fringe” territory (just 5 percent more and he’d be tied with Billary), and again, that it is this close shows what a weak candidate Billary Clinton is within her own party; she’s been shrieking on the national stage since the 1990s and this is her second run for the Oval Office, for fuck’s sake, and this is the best that she can do.

Of course, Billary just wants a win; I can’t imagine that she’s any more concerned about the margin of her win than George W. Bush & Co. were when Bush “won” “re”-election with only 50.7 percent of the popular vote in 2004. (This 50.7 percent was a “mandate,” the Bushy traitors claimed.) Power is power, no?

If Billary makes it to the White House — and yes, Donald Trump could beat her, as right now match-up polling has Queen Billary beating Der Fuehrer Trump by only 6 percentage points (Bernie beats Trump by 14 percentage points) — I predict that she’ll be another Jimmy Carter or George H. W. Bush, a one-termer.

Either way — if she wins the White House or loses the White House in November — I surmise that the Clintonian bent of the Democratic Party ends with her.

And the presidential campaign of Bernie Sanders, which represents the face of the future (he dominates among those voters who are 40 and younger) as much as Queen Billary’s 1990s-era campaign represents the mouldered dead hand of the past, has been instrumental in driving a stake through the vampire’s cold heart at long last.

And that, my friends, can be described only as a victory.

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It’s (probably) Billary’s if she wants it

FILE - In this April 2, 2013, file photo Vice President Joe Biden and former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton are seen in Washington. Clinton, whose popularity is high when out of public office and who carries the scars of being seen as inevitable in 2008, is trying to strike the right careful balance between staying out of the daily political maelstrom and setting herself up for a possible second presidential run. Her fans and foes are making that difficult. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen, File)

Associated Press photo

Recent polls put Billary Clinton (photographed above with Vice President Joe Biden in Washington, D.C., in April) at 50 (yes, fifty) or more percentage points ahead of Biden for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination, and show her beating her toughest potential Repugnican Tea Party challenger, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, an average of 6 percentage points in the November 2016 presidential election. If Billary runs for president in 2016, she most likely will be our nation’s first female president, so it’s too fucking bad that her record indicates that as president she’d be little to no more progressive than the dismally disappointing Barack Obama has been…

Admittedly, I have wondered if Billary Clinton would have been a better president that President Hopey Changey has turned out to be. In 2017 and the following years, most likely, we’ll find out.

Smug individuals point out that Barack Obama for 2008 campaigned as a moderate and that thus the way that his presidency has unfolded could have come as a surprise to no one. My response to that, in a word, is: bullshit.

It’s true that Obama did not campaign as a radical. Crucial to his 2008 victory, I think, was the fact that he didn’t come off as “threatening” to too many white voters, as though once in the Oval Office he’d orchestrate the violent overthrow of the white ruling class by blacks, a revolution that many whiteys, at least in the back of their minds, still fear even today (they’re still talking about the New Black Panthers non-scandal, for fuck’s sake), a revolution that never could be successful any year soon, given the fact that the 2010 U.S. Census put whites at 72.4 percent of the American population and blacks at only 12.6 percent (not to mention the giant gap in wealth and power between white Americans and black Americans as groups).

It’s true that in his first presidential campaign Obama’s mantra was so-called “bipartisanship,” and that his stated goal was that he basically wanted to induce all of us to hold hands around the national campfire and sing rounds of “Kumbaya” until we all dropped of exhaustion.

It’s true that I cringed when Obama repeatedly publicly evoked the name of Ronald Fucking Reagan as A Model President, as though a Repugnican president would publicly praise Bill Clinton or even Jimmy Carter. (The last Democratic president that any of the Repugnican Party set have viewed as remotely OK to praise publicly is John F. Kennedy, probably because he’s dead and because the way that he died made him a bit of a martyr.)

But Obama in his first campaign for the White House also promised “hope” and “change” — ubiquitously and relentlessly — and promised to turn the nation around, promised to undo the damage of the eight long years of the unelected Bush regime.

The word “change” means something, and it does not mean “status quo.” Obama had talked and written about the “audacity of hope.” We were to bravely dare to hope. Just like he claimed he did.

And while Obama never promised to be a left-wing radical, we progressives understood that, politically, he probably couldn’t afford to do so, not if he wanted to actually win the White House, but while Obama was campaigning at least as a progressive lite, Billary Clinton, as her quest for the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination became more and more desperate, acted as though she weren’t a limousine liberal.

After Obama had taken some heat for having stated during a private fundraiser in San Francisco (!) in April 2008 that some Americans “cling” to their “guns or religion” (which is, um, true*) — audio of which was leaked to the public (probably by the Clintonistas)  the desperate Billary saw an opportunity and so she took some shots: an actual shot of whiskey to show what a bad-ass redneck she actually is, and a shot at Obama, calling him “elitist and out of touch” and remarking, “I was taken aback by the demeaning remarks Senator Obama made about people in small-town America.”

Jesus fuck, I thought at the time (and still think). Which party’s presidential nomination is it that she wants?

Seriously: Billary was using the same rhetoric that the Repugnican Tea Party traitors were using against her own party. (Well, OK, this was in 2008, before the rise and fall of the so-called “tea party,” but still…) Billary painted Obama as an “out-of-touch” “elitist,” as though she weren’t a carpetbagging Beltway hack herself, and as though the state she had dragged her carpetbag to, New York, were a red state (indeed, New York is bluer than is Obama’s Illinois).

Given Billary’s mad dash to the right as she became more and more desperate in her losing quest for the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination, given her vote for the unelected Bush regime’s obviously bogus Vietraq War in October 2002, and given her husband’s destruction of the Democratic Party through the now-thank-Goddess-defunct “Democratic Leadership Council,” which dragged the party to the right to the point that the Democratic Party and the Repugnican Tea Party now pretty much are the Coke Party and the Pepsi Party — two plutocrat-and-corporation-loving parties that, like Coke and Pepsi, are hard for many if not most of us to differentiate — Barack Obama to me was the obvious choice in 2008.

But now, five years later, admittedly, I have to wonder if Billary would have been a better president than Obama has been.

It wouldn’t have taken much for Billary to have done a better job as president than Obama has, given that as president Obama has done little, that he squandered his best opportunity to push through an actually progressive agenda (which was in 2009 and 2010), that instead of tackling the nation’s in-its-death-throes economy head on, he spent all of his initial political capital on “Obamacare” (I have to wonder if he had wanted to accomplish what Billary had tried but failed to accomplish when she was first lady — to reform health care), and that because Obama squandered his initial wealth of political capital, the Repugnican Tea Party traitors regained the House of Representatives in late 2010 and probably will retain it after the November 2014 election, thus ensuring that Obama will have no legacy other than the dubious “legacy” of “Obamacare.”

Would Billary Clinton as president have spectacularly squandered the political opportunity of 2009 and 2010 like Obama, with both houses of Congress controlled by his own party, did?

Sure, you might say, she would have tried again with health-care reform, and perhaps she would have, but at the same time, her husband’s mantra for his 1992 presidential run was the James-Carville-credited “It’s the economy, stupid!”

My guess — and, admittedly, it’s just a guess, just a hunch — is that as president, Billary would have worked to fix the economy first, and then focused on health-care reform later (if she ever took it up at all).

Consequently, my further guess is that had Billary been elected as president in 2008, the Democrats would have kept the House of Representatives after the November 2010 elections, allowing Billary to continue pushing for an actually progressive agenda beyond her first two years in office.

Barack Obama has been such a fucking failure and such a dismal disappointment, and already is a lame duck so early into his second term that already the 2016 presidential speculation has heated up; all of us already are looking to what comes after him, knowing that the rest of his second term will be, at best, a wash.

I mean, Billary Clinton is getting her own fucking miniseries on NBC, for fuck’s sake.

Yes, today.com reports:

Betting on Hillary Clinton’s second candidacy for president, NBC has ordered a four-hour miniseries based on the former first lady, U.S. senator and secretary of state’s life.

“Hillary,” starring Diane Lane [as Billary], will recount Clinton’s life from 1998 to the present and will be written by Oscar-nominated screenwriter Courtney Hunt (“Frozen River”). NBC chairman Bob Greenblatt announced the miniseries [yesterday] at the Television Critics Association summer press tour.

“I think she’s one of the most fascinating women of our time and this world,” Greenblatt [said]. “And on the precipice of what we all assume will be her running for president, we think it’s an interesting story to tell with classy producers and a great star.”

The script, which has not been written, will begin with Clinton living in the White House during her husband’s second term and will likely include her second run at becoming the nation’s first female president. It is not based on a book and Clinton is not involved with the project, Greenblatt said. Lane was already attached to the mini-series when NBC bought it, Greenblatt said. …

The miniseries would likely air before Clinton would announce her candidacy if she decides to pursue the nation’s highest office. …

Since Bill Clinton was impeached by the Repugnican-controlled House of Representatives over the (literally…) messy Monica Lewinsky scandal in December 1998 (and was acquitted in February 1999 by the Repugnican-controlled Senate, which could not muster the 67 votes necessary to remove a president from office), presumably the miniseries will begin with the bullshit, uber-partisan Lewinsky affair, but I expect the miniseries to get it over with fairly quickly.

Anyway, I get it that the NBC bigwig is shilling the show, but how, exactly, is Billary Clinton “one of the most fascinating women of our time and this world”?

What, exactly, has this whiskey-guzzling, supposedly “elitist”-hating, carpetbagging, Vietraq-War-rubber-stamping woman accomplished? Does not pretty much everything that she has “accomplished” stem from the fact that she has been married to William Jefferson Clinton?

Would the voters of New York have elected her as their U.S. senator in 2000 had she not first been first lady? Or, like almost anyone else would have been, would she have been rejected by New York’s voters as the shameless carpetbagger that she was?

How is gaining success via your spouse “fascinating”? Or inspiring? And what, exactly, does it do for feminism?

I’m more than ready for our First Female President, but I can’t say that I’m ready for President Billary Clinton.

I’m much more impressed by a woman who made it without having ridden her husband’s coattails. How about my own Sen. Barbara Boxer for president?

I have much more respect for her than I do for Billary. Not only did Boxer have the brains and the balls to vote against the Vietraq War in October 2002, but in January 2005 she had the balls to be the only U.S. senator to stand with U.S. representatives in their objection to the certification of Ohio’s Electoral College votes in light of the serious problems at Ohio’s polls. (Like Florida was crucial to George W. Bush’s “win” in 2000, Ohio was crucial to Bush’s “re”-election in 2004, and like Florida’s chief elections officer in 2000 [Katherine Harris] was openly supporting Bush’s campaign [no conflict of interest there!], so was Ohio’s chief elections officer in 2004 [Kenneth Blackwell].)

Boxer also in early 2005 famously took on then-U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza “You Know She’s Lying When Her Lips Are Moving” Rice during a hearing in D.C., stating, “I personally believe – this is my personal view – that your loyalty to the mission you were given, to sell the war, overwhelmed your respect for the truth.” Hell yeah!

When did Billary Clinton ever do anything as courageous as these things?

Much like Barack Obama used to be, Billary to a large degree still is a political rock star, even though, like Obama, she has accomplished little to nothing in D.C. and thus doesn’t deserve the status.

But, just like in a high-school student-council election, it’s popularity, not accomplishment, that gets you into the White House. (Well, unless you’re George W. Bush; when, like Gee Dubya, you don’t have enough popularity, you have swing states’ chief elections officials who are of your party and the right-wing members of the U.S. Supreme Court and your governor brother help you out…)

And while Billary Clinton has little to no actual accomplishment, she does have popularity aplenty.

Billary shows a whopping 50 (yes, a five-oh)-point lead above Vice President Joe Biden in recent polls of 2016 Democratic presidential candidate preference. Biden consistently comes in at second place in only the low double digits. Yes, Billary consistently is hitting more than 60 percent in these polls.

The Repugnican Tea Party traitors, on the hand, have no clear front runner for the White House for 2016, with not one member of the possible field of Chris Christie, Pretty Boy Paul Ryan, Marco Rubio, Rand Paul, Ted Cruz, Prick Perry, Prick Santorum and yes, Jeb Bush, able to reach even 20 percent in recent partisan 2016 presidential-preference polls.

And in recent hypothetical matches against Repugnican Tea Party traitors for the 2016 presidential election, Billary handily beats them all. She beats even her thus-far most formidable opponent, Chris Christie, by an average of 6 points. (Recent polls, by contrast, have Biden losing not only to Christie but even to the likes of Jeb Bush…)

In a Bloomberg poll taken not too terribly long ago (May 31-June 3), 40 percent of those polled said they “probably” or “definitely” would vote for Billary if she were the Democratic presidential candidate in 2016, while only 34 percent said they “definitely” would not vote for her. Twenty-three percent said they “might” vote for her and 3 percent said that they were “unsure,” so if you give her the support of only half of those individuals (which is 13 percent), that’s 53 percent before she’s even declared her candidacy.

Fifty-three percent is not bad. (And it’s what Obama got in 2008 — 52.9 percent of the popular vote.)

So, while I never have been and never will be enthusiastic about Billary Clinton, whom I consider to be just another Democrat in name only, just another Repugnican Lite, the numbers very apparently are behind her.

Add to this the probability that Billary’s mere official announcement of her candidacy probably would effectively or perhaps even literally, totally clear the Democratic field, saving her a primary fight and thus allowing her to focus her time, energy and money on the November 2016 election, while we’ll probably see another crowded Repugnican Tea Party primary field, as we did in 2012.

Not only will these Repugnican Tea Party candidates have to focus on the presidential primary elections (and caucuses) and the presidential general election, but if they have a particularly nasty primary season, the eventual winner could come out of the process fairly bruised, battered and tarnished.

And my guess is that the Repugnican Tea Party traitors’ “Benghazigate” bullshit** has been helping Billary more than it has been hurting her, in that those (34 percent or so) who already solidly hate her already solidly hate her, and in that if the Repugnican Tea Party traitors attack Billary viciously and frequently enough, they could induce even unenthusiastic-about-Billary people like me to support her.***

And that’s a feat that only morons of the magnitude of those who comprise the Repugnican Tea Party could accomplish.

*The fuller quote is:

“… You go into some of these small towns in Pennsylvania, and like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing’s replaced them. And they fell through the Clinton administration, and the Bush administration, and each successive administration has said that somehow these communities are [going to] regenerate, and they have not.

“So it’s not surprising then that they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations. …”

Again, there is a word for these remarks: the truth.

Indeed, the “tea party’s” best accomplishment is blaming the wrong people for the nation’s problems (feminists, immigrants, non-heterosexuals, progressives [a.k.a. “socialists” or “Commies”], labor unionists [also a.k.a. “socialists” or “Commies”], Muslims, et. al.) while those who actually are responsible for the nation’s problems (the plutocrats, corporatocrats [Wall Street weasels and many, many others] and militarists, mostly) get off scot-fucking-free.

**Statistician god Nate Silver, who I hope writes about the 2016 presidential election despite the fact that he soon is leaving the New York Times for ESPN, wrote this about “Benghazigate” and Billary’s popularity back on May 31:

… So, are Americans carefully parsing through the details of the Benghazi attack — and finding Mrs. Clinton more culpable than Mr. Obama?

Probably not. Instead, the decline in her ratings was likely just a matter of time — and if the Benghazi hearings had not triggered it, something else would have.

… It’s easy to be popular when nobody is criticizing you — and there was a long period, from the closing stages of the 2008 campaign through most of her tenure as secretary of state, when Republicans had little interest in attacking Mrs. Clinton directly. Now that Republicans have chosen to engage her again, her numbers are coming down. … This is what happens when a politician returns to being in the partisan fray after having drifted above it for some time.

But if Mrs. Clinton were to run for president in 2016, Republicans would undoubtedly have found any number of other ways to criticize her — from her policy proposals, to concerns about her age or health, to gaffes that she might make on the campaign trail, to controversies recycled from her tenure as secretary of state.

Mrs. Clinton, if she runs in 2016, is highly unlikely to win by the double-digit margins that some polls have given her over prospective Republican opponents. But the same would have been true regardless of Benghazi. The main circumstances in which a presidential candidate wins by double digits are when that candidate is an incumbent running in a time of exceptional economic growth, or when the other party’s incumbent is viewed as having performed terribly. Or, every now and then, the opposing candidate might be viewed as extreme or incompetent, and swing voters will feel as though they have no real choice. …

I expect Billary, if she runs for president in 2016 (and I put it at more than a 75-percent chance that she will), to do about as well as Obama did in 2008 and in 2012 (Obama in 2008 beat John McCainosaurus 52.9 percent to 45.7 percent and in 2012 beat Mittens Romney 51.1 percent to 47.2 percent).

In fact, again, Billary’s polling against the most-popular-thus-far potential 2016 Repugnican Tea Party presidential candidate, Chris Christie, has her, on average, 6 percentage points ahead of him, and Obama’s average popular-vote victory over his Repugnican opponents in the 2008 and 2012 presidential elections was 5.55 percent, which to me suggests that we’re seeing about a 6-percent gap between those Americans who prefer a Democratic president and those who prefer a Repugnican Tea Party president.

This to me appears to be a demographic (and not a situational) gap that the Repugnican Tea Party traitors cannot close, which would explain why they want to further rig our future elections, such as through even further voter suppression (especially in the name of preventing “voter fraud”) to the greatest extent that they humanly possibly can.

***That said, about the only way that I could see myself casting a vote for Billary for president in November 2016 would be if her Repugnican Tea Party opponent, whoever it is, actually were close to winning California and its huge chunk of electoral votes, which is quite unlikely, given that Billary beat even Barack Obama in California’s 2008 Democratic presidential primary election, 51.5 percent to 43.2 percent. She’s quite popular here in California.

However, were Billary’s campaign actually struggling nationally and her Repugnican Tea Party opponent actually within range of winning the White House in November 2016, I cannot, as I type this sentence, rule out holding my nose and giving her campaign some money…

As much as I’m not a fan of Billary, of course, when push comes to shove, I’d prefer her in the White House over any Repugnican Tea Party traitor.

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Nicolas Maduro wins mandate!

Venezuelan presidential candidate Maduro celebrates after official results gave him a victory in Caracas

Reuters photo

Nicolas Maduro, the late Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez’s hand-picked successor, celebrates his victory in Venezuela’s presidential election yesterday. The sore losers on the right are trying to cripple Maduro right out of the gate by casting unsubstantiated charges of election fraud, just like the wingnuts do here at home.

I say that tongue in cheek. Of course 50.7 percent of the vote isn’t a mandate (the definition of which to me is something like “unquestionably strong majority support,” which, I suppose, would need to at least approach 60 percent), but I am struck by the irony of how the unelected Bush regime (and its friends in the corporately owned and controlled media) called its 50.7 percent of the popular vote in 2004 a “mandate” while the very same wingnuts say that Nicolas Maduro’s 50.7 percent in yesterday’s presidential election in Venezuela means that the Chavistas are in deep doo-doo because Maduro didn’t do better than he did.

Why wasn’t George W. Bush’s 50.7 percent painted as a problem for his party in 2004 — even though, in retrospect, it seems fairly clear that Bush’s 50.7 percent was, in fact, far from being a “mandate,” actually a harbinger of upcoming presidential election losses for the Repugnican Party?

(Bush’s 50.7 percent in 2004 was higher than the 47.9 percent that he got in 2000 — when he was defeated by Democrat Al Gore, who got 48.4 percent of the popular vote — but Barack Obama, with his popular vote wins of 52.9 percent in 2008 and 51.1 percent in 2012 [to Mittens Romney’s awfully ironic 47.2 percent], earned more popular votes that Bush ever did.)

It fits the right wing’s narrative nicely to assert that Nicolas Maduro is a weakened president from Day One. It wasn’t in the wingnuts’ best interests to assert that Bush was a weakened president, so instead they claimed the opposite — that his 50.7 represented a “mandate.” Bush himself bragged about having earned “political capital” that he was going to spend on a shopping spree.

Indeed, Bush not only spent any “political capital” that he’d actually earned, but he ran up his party’s credit card debt, a debt that still plagues his party. (Not only do the Repugnican Tea Party traitors still talk as though Ronald Reagan was the last Repugnican president, but I clearly recall that even while Bush still sat in the White House in 2008, neither John McCainosaurus nor Sarah Palin mentioned him in their televised national debates or in their public appearances, but also pretended that Reagan was the last president from their party.)

So: If you are a right-wing politician, then your 50.7 percent is a “mandate.” But if you are a left-wing politician, then your 50.7 percent means that the vote was so freakin’ close that you might as well just step aside and allow your opponent to take office instead of you.

Sickly, even many on the left fall into this double-standard bullshit, and, as Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR) noted in November, while Bush’s “re”-election immediately was branded a “mandate,” even though he “won” only 286 electoral votes in 2004, Obama’s win of more than 300 electoral votes in November was “definitely not a mandate.” (After all of the votes were counted, it turns out that Obama won 332 electoral votes in November.)

When push comes to shove, it doesn’t matter whether Nicolas Maduro won a “mandate” yesterday. All that he needed to do was get the higher number of votes — to the victor goes the spoils — and he apparently did that. His right-wing opponent, Henrique Capriles, has demanded a recount, and Maduro has said that he’s fine with every vote being recounted.

Of course, Maduro can’t claim, as the unelected Bush regime falsely did in 2004, that he has a “mandate,” but at the same time he shouldn’t allow himself to be stymied by the right-wing sore losers’ attempts to cripple him right out of the gate. A win is a win, and very apparently he, not Capriles, was chosen by the majority of the people.

(Despite right-wing charges of rampant election fraud in Venezuela, former U.S. President Jimmy Carter, whose organization monitors elections around the world, said last year, “As a matter of fact, of the 92 elections that we’ve monitored, I would say that the election process in Venezuela is the best in the world.” [Of course, Jimmy Carter is just a “socialist,” too, so of course he would say that!])

Maduro, no doubt, has his work cut out for him. My guess is that the late Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, after he had consolidated his political power, in his later years didn’t work as hard for the people as he had in the past (in fairness, though, of course his battle with cancer no doubt slowed him down), and Maduro needs to be more about improving Venezuela than about maintaining a rock-star brand name, especially the Chavez brand name.

Chavez  is gone, and while it’s fine to carry on his ideals — I hope that they are carried on not only in Venezuela, but that they spread to the United States of America one day — it’s a mistake to make a movement about one person instead of about principles, because while principles can be eternal, the flesh is weak and quite impermanent.

As long as Maduro and his supporters refuse to get caught up in the right wing’s bullshit propagandistic narrative that Maduro didn’t really win the election, and as long as Maduro works hard for the greatest number of Venezuelans — as his own person, and not as the clone of Chavez — Maduro can be re-elected in another six years.

In the meantime, all of us on the left, regardless of which nation we live in, need to be vigilant about the double standards. The bar always has been set higher for those on the left than it has been for those on the right, and at the minimum we on the left need to stop cooperating with that bullshit. The wingnuts act like they’re winners even when they’ve lost, and we on the left tend to act like we’re losers even when we’ve won.

And Senor Presidente: That pornstache prolly should go. Just sayin’.

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TIME’s lazy, unimaginative choice

TIME magazine cover of Barack Obama as Person of the Year 2012

TIME magazine’s having made Barack Obama its “Person of the Year” yet again (it first gave Obama that designation for 2008) reminds me of the ludicrously premature awarding of the Nobel Peace Price to President Hopey-Changey-Droney for 2009.

Not that TIME routinely is exactly creative or visionary in its naming of its annual “Person of the Year.” Winning a U.S. presidential election often if not usually is enough of an accomplishment/“accomplishment” for an individual to win the designation. Jimmy Carter won the designation in 1976 and Ronald Reagan did in 1980. Bill Clinton won it in 1992 and even George W. Bush won it in 2000 and in 2004 — and then, as I noted, Obama won it in 2008 and then again this year.

The Nobel Peace Prize selectors are a lot more creative — the only two U.S. presidents to win the prize during my lifetime (I was born in 1968) were Jimmy Carter in 2002 and, as I noted, Obama in 2009. (Well, Al Gore, who actually won the presidency in 2000, was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007, but he wasn’t coronated as president by the right-wing U.S. Supreme Court.)

I fail to see why, other than TIME’s lack of vision or creativity or imagination, Obama was named the magazine’s “Person of the Year” again this year.

I mean, TIME’s selection comes right as Obama apparently just handed over U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice’s scalp* to the KKK, headed by Grand Dragon John “Sore Loserman” McCain, so that the much more acceptable old white guy (John Kerry) can be made U.S. secretary of state instead, and as Obama apparently is poised to sell us out to the Repugnican Tea Party fascists on Social Security, and Goddess knows what other historic Democratic achievements the center-right DINO Obama will dismantle during his second term. (Surely Obama will be a progressive president in his second term, the Obamabots theorized. The gloves will be off! Yeah, right. I’m so glad that I voted for Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein on November 6.)

TIME’s 2008 designation of Obama as its “Person of the Year” I can accept. He not only beat Billary Clinton in the protracted Democratic presidential primary season, which was a political feat, but his election as the nation’s first non-white president was at least a milestone if not technically a great accomplishment.

But TIME’s 2012 designation of Obama is just fucking lazy.

True, Obama, given his dismal first term, is damned fucking lucky to have been re-elected. He promised “hope” and “change” but delivered more of the same. Instead of pushing through a progressive agenda when both houses of Congress were in his party’s control in 2009 and 2010, he squandered his once-in-a-lifetime political capital by trying to sing “Kumbaya” with the Repugnican Tea Party traitors — and thus his party lost the House to the “tea party” traitors in 2010.

Obama won re-election last month only because the Repugnican Tea Party dipshits incredibly stupidly nominated one of the most unlikeable people on the planet as their presidential candidate for 2012.

Multi-millionaire Mormon Mittens Romney is so freakishly unrelatable that even many if not most Repugnican Tea Party traitors had to hold their noses while they cast their votes for him (better the despicable white guy than the black guy again), so of course Mittens lost the so-called “swing vote.”

Obama didn’t win re-election because he’s so great, but because his opponent was so unbelievably bad, replete with telling his Richie-Rich donors on hidden camera in May that he already had written off 47 percent of the American people as being lost causes.

Fuck, make David Corn of Mother Jones magazine, who broke the “47 percent” story in September, the “Person of the Year.” He did more to win Obama re-election than Obama did.

Even TIME magazine’s editor seems to credit changing U.S. demographics to Obama’s re-election more than to Obama himself. Reports Reuters:

[TIME magazine] has tapped U.S. President Barack Obama for its Person of the Year for the second time, citing his historic re-election last month as symbolic of the nation’s shifting demographics and the rise of younger, more diverse Americans.

In announcing its annual selection [today], the magazine called Obama the “Architect of the New America.”

“He’s basically the beneficiary and the author of a kind new America — a new demographic, a new cultural America that he is now the symbol of,” TIME editor Rick Stengel said of Obama, who was also selected for the honor in 2008 when he became the nation’s first black president. …

Obama is the beneficiary of demographic changes and the resultant national cultural changes, to be sure — as well as he was the beneficiary of what Howard Dean built in his failed 2004 Democratic presidential bid (indeed, in 2008 Obama rode Dean’s wave right on into the White House) — but how, exactly, is Obama the “author” or the “architect” of these changes?

Um, aren’t national demographic changes a lot bigger than just one individual?

Barack Obama could fart or sneeze and it widely would be called a great fucking accomplishment.

Only in a dying empire, it seems to me, could this be the case.

*If you thought that Obama actually was going to defend a person of color from the lynch mob to the death, don’t feel too badly. I also actually thought that maybe this time Obama wouldn’t throw a person of color who is under attack by the white supremacists under the bus, but, of course, just as he did with the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Van Jones and Shirley Sherrod, he apparently tossed Susan Rice right under those big wheels.

Because he’s a man of character and courage, you see.

Let’s make him the “Person of the Year” every year!

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George McGovern’s death makes me yearn for real Democrats

George McGovern, War Critic Routed by Nixon in 1972

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The death today of George McGovern, a progressive who ran unsuccessfully against incumbent President Richard M. Nixon in 1972 (and who is shown above right campaigning in 1972 with his first running mate, Thomas Eagleton), only reminds me, shortly before another presidential election, how far the Democratic Party has fallen.

It’s a perverse fact of politics that the possession of intelligence and compassion (concomitantly known as wisdom) often, if not usually, dooms an individual who is running for high public office.

I write that with the death of real Democrat George McGovern* in mind.

I was only four years old when in 1972 Democrat McGovern lost to incumbent Repugnican President Richard M. Nixon in a landslide. A landslide — and look how wonderful Nixon’s second term turned out to be: It was the Democratic Party’s operations that Nixon’s operatives were snooping into in June 1972 in the Watergate scandal, which ultimately led to Tricky Dick Nixon’s resignation in disgrace in 1974. (Nixon’s remains the only presidential resignation in U.S. history.)

The masses often get it wrong.

I don’t remember McGovern’s presidential campaign, of course. The first sitting president I remember seeing on television was Gerald Ford, who followed the disgraced-by-Watergate Nixon, and I seem to remember seeing a perpetually stumbling and falling Ford parodied by Chevy Chase on “Saturday Night Live” more than seeing the actual Ford himself on TV.

I remember seeing also Jimmy Carter on TV, and of course I remember Ronald Reagan and all of those who have followed him. But during Carter’s first and only term, I was an elementary school student who was interested in “Star Wars,” not in politics, and it wasn’t until Reagan’s eight-year reign during most of the 1980s that my political identity started to form.

My father always has been apolitical, not giving a rat’s ass about anything outside of his immediate personal universe, and my mother is one of those “swing voters” who seem to make their presidential picks based upon the logic of a Magic 8 Ball. (My parents reside in Arizona, where they belong, and I in California, where I belong.)

My point in bringing up my parents — which makes me feel like Johnny Depp’s Willy Wonka when the topic of his parents is brought up — is to illustrate that neither of them even attempted to influence my own political views, with one of them being apolitical and the other being politically muddled at best, so the fact that I grew into a left-winger in the red state of Arizona, which is not conducive to the development of little “socialists,” suggests to me that a progressive political viewpoint is the natural path of human development, unless that path is obstructed (such as by committed right-wing parents who probably should be committed, a “Christo”fascist social environment, etc.) and the journeyer cannot overcome those obstructions, as I was able to do.

The first presidential race that I remember caring about was the 1984 race. I was in high school at the time, and I supported Democrat Walter Mondale over the re-election of Reagan, and I don’t know if I even could have articulated very well why I preferred Mondale over Reagan, since it certainly wasn’t my parents who influenced my preference for Mondale. If memory serves it was a visceral thing, my visceral, intuitive identification of Mondale as the truly wise (again, the compassionate and intelligent) candidate and Reagan as the poser, the phony.

Of course, in 1984 the very first presidential candidate whom I supported (not with money, because as a minor I didn’t have any [and are minors allowed to contributed to presidential campaigns anyway?], and not with my vote, because I wasn’t yet 18), very much like McGovern had done in 1972, lost to the Repugnican incumbent in a landslide.

Four years later, in 1988, Democratic presidential candidate Michael Dukakis, whom I supported and voted for as a college student (I remember having to sell my plasma as a starving college student, so I’m pretty certain that I wasn’t able to give Dukakis any money), performed barely better against George H. W. Bush than Mondale had performed against Reagan four years earlier.

Um, yeah, so I wasn’t off to a great start in life in my presidential picks, and for 12 long years as I was politically budding, I suffered through first Ronald Reagan and then George Bush I. (I never will forget graduating from college with a worthless degree but with plenty of student-loan debt during The First George Bush Recession of the late 1980s-early 1990s. These early socioeconomic experiences tend to color your political outlook for life, as the Great Depression very apparently colored my Scrooge-like maternal grandmother’s outlook for the rest of her life.)

Then in the 1990s came pseudo-Democrat Bill Clinton, who, although he benefitted from a rebounding economy (how much of the 1990s’ economic rebound was from his policies and how much of it was from the natural course of economic events I’m not certain), gave us such gems as NAFTA, welfare “reform” and DOMA — oh, yeah, and the Monica Lewinsky scandal, because having an intern blow you in the Oval Office never can blow up in your face.

So the first Democratic presidential candidate whom I supported — I rooted for and voted for Clinton in 1992 and in 1996 — and who actually won the presidential election was the so-called Democrat who destroyed the Democratic Party by dragging it so far to the right that the Democratic Party today looks like Repugnican Lite. Yay!

Bill Clinton benefitted from a three-way race in 1992, and won with a plurality, not a majority, of the popular vote, which today’s Democratic hacks forget or ignore. (Dems deny that third-party candidate Ross Perot, who garnered a-very-impressive-for-a-third-party-candidate 19 percent of the popular vote in 1992, harmed George H. W. Bush’s re-election bid, but it seems to me that the majority of Perot’s supporters were right of center and that most of them would have voted for Bush over Clinton. [If memory serves, my Magic-8-Ball-wielding mother voted for Perot, and my guess is that had Perot not been a choice, she would have voted for Bush or would not have voted at all.])

I get it that after a string of Democratic presidential defeats — George McGovern, Jimmy Carter (denied a second term), Walter Mondale and Michael Dukakis — and after long time in the political wilderness during the Nixon/Ford, Reagan and Bush I years — the Democratic Party apparently wanted to pull away, far away, from the egghead image.

Democrat Adlai Stevenson, who lost to Repugnican Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1952 and again in 1956 yet sought (but did not get) the Democratic Party’s nomination yet again in 1960, seems to have been the eggheaded Democrats’ founding father, at least of our modern era, and indeed, Stevenson was the last presidential candidate from either of the two major parties who, despite having lost a presidential election, was nominated by his party to run in the very next presidential election. (These days, losing a presidential election very apparently means that you’ll never get another shot at your party’s presidential nomination again.)

The last Democratic egghead who lost — but who, surreally, actually won — a presidential election was, of course, Al Gore, who in 2000 won 48.4 percent of the popular vote to George W. Bush’s 47.9 percent, for a difference of more than 500,000 votes.** Only in the United States of America could the candidate who won fewer votes be made — crowned — president by the U.S. Supreme Court and his cronies (such as his brother, who was governor of the pivotal state that he “won,” and the chief elections official of that state who made damn sure that he “won” it), and this is yet another of those wonderful, deeply anti-democratic events during my lifetime that has shaped my current outlook.

So Al Gore’s win/loss in 2000 might have been the death knell for the eggheaded Democratic presidential candidate, but isn’t there some middle ground between a Bill Clinton and an Adlai Stevenson?

You might argue that President Barack Obama more or less fills that middle ground, since he’s known as both intelligent and non-nerdy (and, importantly, highly unlikely to be blown by an intern), but today we have Obama in a race for re-election that shouldn’t be nearly as close as it is, and probably wouldn’t be as close as it is had Obama spent his first two years in office actually delivering upon his ubiquitous 2008 promises of hope and change while both houses of Congress were controlled by his own party, a rare alignment of the stars that never should be squandered, and that even George W. Bush, dipshit that he is, did not squander. (Nor did Bush II, dipshit that he is, shit and piss all over his own fucking base, which seems to be the Obama administration’s and the Obamabots’ favorite fucking pastime.)

In Barack Obama, other than in empty rhetoric and false promises, we see precious little of the spirit of George McGovern that used to infuse the Democratic Party. In Obama we see instead the cynical, opportunistic, center-right spirit of Bill Clinton, an approach that the modern Democratic Party argues is the only approach that works, yet in actuality has no track record of effectiveness.

Again, in my book, Bill Clinton won in 1992 in no small part because of “spoiler” Ross Perot, and again, in 1992 Clinton garnered a plurality (43 percent of the popular vote), not a majority. (The only other president during my lifetime who garnered not even a full 44 percent of the popular vote was Richard Nixon in 1968, the year of my birth.)

Clinton again failed to get a full majority even in 1996 (he got 49 percent of the popular vote), and in his 1996 (and pre-Lewinsky) re-election bid he benefitted from having an incredibly wooden Repugnican opponent in Bob Dull — er, Dole — and he benefitted from a strong economy, which, again, I am not certain how much resulted from his economic policies and how much resulted from the natual ebb and flow of the nation’s economy.

Let’s reflect upon the fact that Barack Obama garnered 53 percent of the popular vote in 2008, which was better that Bill Clinton or George W. Bush ever did in the elections from 1992 through 2004. Obama’s 53 percent in 2008 bested Jimmy Carter’s and John F. Kennedy’s take of the popular vote, too.

How did Obama do it?

Again, he ran on a progressive (if too-vague) platform of hope and change. That was the bait.

Obviously, if Obama hadn’t perceived that that was what the majority of Americans wanted, that wouldn’t have been what he promised.

That progressivism is what the majority of Americans wanted, and that progressivism is what Obama Version 2008 promised (even if gauzily), even though his hacks (the Obamabots) love to engage in historical revision and deny that fact, but what Obama has delivered as president is just more Clintonesque, center-right, “bipartisan,” Repugnican-ass-licking bullshit, replete with Billary Clinton as his secretary of state and Bill Clinton as his current campaign surrogate.

So the news of George McGovern’s death early this morning at a hospice in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, at age 90 only underscores for me, with another presidential election only a little more than two weeks away, the fact that the Democratic Party of today is only a shadow of what it used to be.

I lament that the only presidents named George whom I got during my lifetime are surnamed Bush, and I have to wonder how George McGovern felt about the likes of Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, who turned the Democratic Party into the center-right, corporate-ass-licking, lesser-of-two-evils monstrosity of a fundraising machine that it is today.

And I can’t see how I can honor the memory of George McGovern by blackening the oval next to the name of Barack Obama on the mail-in ballot that sits just yards from me right now as I type this sentence, yet unmarked.

*Wikipedia’s entry on George McGovern reports, in part:

George Stanley McGovern (July 19, 1922-October 21, 2012) was a historian, author and U.S. representative, U.S. senator and the Democratic Party presidential nominee in the 1972 presidential election.

McGovern grew up in Mitchell, South Dakota…. [After he fought in World War II] he gained degrees from Dakota Wesleyan University and Northwestern University, culminating in a Ph.D., and was a history professor. He was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1956 and re-elected in 1958. After a failed bid for the U.S. Senate in 1960, he was elected there in 1962.

As a senator, McGovern was an exemplar of modern American liberalism. He became most known for his outspoken opposition to the growing U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War. He staged a brief nomination run in the 1968 presidential election as a stand-in for the assassinated Robert F. Kennedy.

The subsequent McGovern-Fraser Commission fundamentally altered the Democratic presidential nominating process, by greatly increasing the number of caucuses and primaries and reducing the influence of party insiders.

The McGovern-Hatfield Amendment sought to end the Vietnam War by legislative means but was defeated in 1970 and 1971.

McGovern’s long-shot, grassroots-based 1972 presidential campaign found triumph in gaining the Democratic nomination but left the party badly split ideologically, and the failed vice-presidential pick of Thomas Eagleton undermined McGovern’s credibility. In the general election McGovern lost to incumbent Richard Nixon in one of the biggest landslides in American history. Re-elected senator in 1968 and 1974, McGovern was defeated in a bid for a fourth term in 1980.

Throughout his career, McGovern was involved in issues related to agriculture, food, nutrition, and hunger….

Wikipedia also notes that anyone running against the incumbent Nixon would have had an uphill battle anyway, but after high-profile Democrats such as Ted Kennedy, Walter Mondale and Hubert Humphrey and other Democrats declined to be McGovern’s running mate, McGovern picked U.S. Sen. Thomas Eagleton, whom McGovern later replaced with Kennedy clan in-law Sargent Shriver after Eagleton’s history of treatment for mental illness came to light, casting doubt on his fitness to handle the presidency if it came to that, and raising doubts about McGovern’s judgment.

Wikipedia notes that Team McGovern didn’t vet Eagleton thoroughly and that Eagleton and his wife intentionally kept Eagleton’s hospitalizations for mental illness from McGovern. Bloomberg notes that less than a week after McGovern had proclaimed that he supported Eagleton “1,000 percent,” he replaced Eagleton with Shriver.

Bloomberg notes that McGovern later wrote in his autobiography, “I did what I had to, but the Eagleton matter ended whatever chance there was to defeat Richard Nixon in 1972. In the minds of many Americans the Eagleton episode convicted me of incompetence, vacillation, dishonesty and cold calculation, all at the same time.”

Bloomberg notes that “The Eagleton misstep ushered in today’s rigorous vetting of potential vice presidential candidates,” which doesn’t really explain what happened with Dan Quayle or Sarah Palin, but whatever…

**You might argue that the last Democratic egghead who ran for president actually was John Kerry in 2004, and while he does hail from Massachusetts, a la egghead Michael Dukakis (indeed, Kerry was Dukakis’ lieutenant governor), Vietnam vet Kerry ran such a war-hero campaign (the “swiftboaters'” defamation of him notwithstanding) that, in my estimation, anyway, he fairly escaped being branded as an egghead.

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Barack Obama’s one-term presidency seems fairly unavoidable

Jimmy Carter and the first George Bush both lost re-election primarily because of a shitty national economy. How will “underdog” Barack Obama avoid their fate, even with his “vision”?

So the 2012 presidential race is shaping up to look like a hybrid of the 1980 and the 1996 presidential races.

In 1980, Ronald Reagan famously asked the people of the nation if they were better off, under then-President Jimmy Carter, than they were four years previously.

Today, President Barack Obama freely proclaims that Americans are not better off now than they were four years ago, giving the Repugnican Tea Partiers an early Christmas gift.

Obama proclaims that the 2012 presidential election will be about “who’s got a vision?”

“Vision” doesn’t pay the average voter’s bills, however, and I can’t see what Obama’s “vision” thus far has accomplished — the constitutionality of his “signature” legislative “accomplishment” of health care “reform” is being reviewed by the U.S. Supreme Court in its current term — but whatever.

Obama also has found a way to make the nation’s economic collapse all about himself, proclaiming himself to be the “underdog.” Why are you worrying about yourself when you should be focusing on Barack Obama?

These statements, apparently meant to bolster Obama, only demonstrate how out of touch with the common American he is.

And it certainly doesn’t help Obama’s re-election chances that the same young people whom he apparently lied to in order to get into the White House are now filling up Wall Street and other metropolitan areas protesting his solidarity with the Wall Street weasels and other treasonous corporatocrats and plutocrats who tanked our economy.

Obama’s best shot at re-election is that the Repugnican Tea Partiers pick the worst candidate that they possibly could, a candidate so manifestly awful that he or she makes Obama look like George Washington or Abraham Lincoln by comparison. That candidate would be Texas Gov. Rick Perry, but Perry seems to be imploding.

While Perry might have survived Niggerheadgate — he could be criticized fairly if his family hadn’t changed the racist name of the Texas property after they bought it, but it appears that they did — the scandal/“scandal” has cast a spotlight on other aspects of Rick Perry, such as this, as reported by The Associated Press today:

Austin, Texas — Eleven years ago, when the NAACP stepped up a campaign to remove the Confederate battle flag from statehouses and other government buildings across the South, it found an opponent in Rick Perry.

Texas had a pair of bronze plaques with symbols of the Confederacy displayed in its state Supreme Court building. Perry, then lieutenant governor, said they should stay put, arguing that Texans “should never forget our history.”

It’s a position Perry has taken consistently when the legacy of the Civil War has been raised, as have officials in many of the other former Confederate states. But while defense of Confederate symbols and Southern institutions can still be good politics below the Mason-Dixon line,
the subject can appear in a different light when officials seek national office. …

Yup. What plays well in Texas tends to wither on the national scene.

I’m fine for never forgetting our history (indeed, we forget it at our own peril), but the Confederate flag, like the word “nigger,” belongs in the
history books
not on public display, except perhaps at a museum (ditto for the swastika). Besides, the white supremacists who run the state of Texas make damn sure that the publishers of the history textbooks used in the state’s schools don’t offend white (or “Christian” or heterosexual or capitalist or…) sensibilities, so what’s the problem, Ricky?

The Repugnican Tea Partiers seem anxious to identify their champion to go up against Obama, with more and more red states moving up their primary or caucus dates. I doubt that Perry has time to recover in an ever-contracting Repugnican Tea Party presidential primary season. If he were eloquent he might be able to get past Niggerheadgate, but the fact that he has a penchant for stumbling into incoherence during nationally televised debates bodes ill for him.

As much as I never want to see a President Perry, it seems to me that Barack Obama’s best chance for re-election would be if Perry emerges as his opponent. Recent nationwide polls show Obama beating Perry in a hypothetical matchup by three or more percentage points.

Those same polls, however, show former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and Obama within only one to three percentage points of each other, with Romney beating Obama by two percentage points in at least two recent nationwide polls. (I define “recent” as taken within the last month.)

A while back I likened Mitt Romney to Bob Dole, the incredibly wooden and uncharismatic Repugnican Party presidential candidate of 1996, the year that Bill Clinton fairly coasted to re-election.

Against Bob Dole II, Obama would be assured re-election, I thought back then, but back then I’d also thought that the nation’s economy would have shown some improvement by now.

However, the economy shows no signs of improvement between now and Election Day in November 2012, and so my money is on the 2012 presidential election looking like a cross between the 1980 and the 1996 presidential elections: Yes, the Repugnicans will front an uncharismatic candidate whom (unlike was the case with Ronald Reagan) no one is excited about, but, given the shambles that the economy is in, the uncharismatic Repugnican candidate (Mitt Romney, in case that isn’t clear) will beat the Democratic incumbent. The voters will be that thirsty for the change that was promised to them in 2008 but that never was delivered: that they’ll drink sea water, even though drinking sea water will kill you even faster than will plain old dehydration.

Many progressives whom Obama punk’d in Round One with his hollow promises of “hope” and “change” won’t bother to vote in November 2012 at all, having no progressive presidential candidate to vote for. If they do hold their nose and vote for Obama in November 2012, because of their lack of enthusiasm they certainly won’t talk up Obama’s re-election like they talked up his initial election, and if they give Team Obama any money in Round Two, they certainly won’t give as much as they did in Round One.

The Repugnican Tea Party traitors, on the other hand, I surmise, want a Repugnican, any Repugnican, back in the White House more enthusiastically than most of Barack Obama’s (former) supporters want four more years! This enthusiasm gap, I believe, is the biggest threat to Obama’s re-election.*

But, of course, the Obamabots — those invididuals for whom Barack Obama can do no wrong and who have some excuse for virtually all of his miserable failings – will blame Obama’s November 2012 loss on those of us who are actually progressive, who instead of selling out our progressive
principles steadfastly stick to our progressive principles (among which is not the idea of supporting the lesser of two evils). Some of them will even stoop to calling us “racist.” Some of them already have started doing that.

All of that completely fucking ignores, of course, the fact that Barack Obama, early in his presidency, did what even dipshit George W. Bush damn well knew better not to do: to shit and piss all over your base, to extend the middle finger, repeatedly, to those very same people who got you into the White House in the first place.

Competent historians, I believe, will identify that as Obama’s biggest mistake: having shat and pissed all over his base.

Had Obama followed the progressive economic advice that his base gave him from Day One of his presidency, the nation’s economy would have improved. But by trying to win over those whose support he never was going to gain in the first place through his countless “bipartisan” capitulations, by trying to make everyone love him to death, Obama sealed his own fate.

If Barack Obama actually manages to eke out re-election 13 months from now, I will be shocked.

I once expected him to be like Bill Clinton, easily fending off a challenge to a second term by a snooze-inducing Repugnican challenger. But now I expect Obama to be like Jimmy Carter, a one-term Democratic president. Especially when Obama freely publicly admits that we’re not better off now than we were four years ago.

*Lest any Obamabot try to deny that there even is an enthusiasm gap, a nationwide McClatchy-Marist poll taken less than a month ago asked, “Do you definitely plan to vote for Barack Obama for re-election as president or do you definitely plan to vote against him?” A whopping 49 percent declared “against him,” while only 36 percent declared for him, with 15 percent declaring that they aren’t sure yet. I surmise that the lion’s share of those 15 percent in the end will vote for the Repugnican Tea Party candidate.

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Mitt Romney: The next Bob Dole

In honor of Mitt Romney officially announcing his 2012 presidential bid today, I am reposting the following piece, which I originally posted on March 6.

I have little to add — and the poll numbers remain pretty much the same — except that it’s clear that Romney, especially in comparison to such whackjobs as Michele Bachmann, is going to emerge as the most electable (that is, the most inoffensive) candidate to the old school Repugnican Party establishment, which pretty much means that the 2012 Repugnican Tea Party nomination is all his.

Romney will bore the voters to death (like wooden Repugnican presidential candidate Bob Dole did in 1996), and Barack Obama will win re-election. You have to be pretty fucking boring to make Barack Obama seem exciting again.

(I would love for Obama to have a strong primary challenge — and by “strong” I don’t mean just giving him a little scare, but making his loss of the nomination a very real possibility — but the old school Democratic Party establishment will turn anyone who dares to oppose Obama [who more and more resembles the wizard of Oz, all talk and no substance, and never mind what’s behind that curtain over there!] into a political pariah, so I don’t expect a strong primary challenge to Obama. I expect nothing of the Democratic Party these days except continual cave-ins to the Repugnican Tea Party in the name of “compromise” and “bipartisanship.”)  

Mitt Romney

Mitt Romney

Mitt Romney

Associated Press photos

Above: Repugnican Mitt Romney pontificates at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington, D.C., [in February]. Below: Failed 1996 Repugnican presidential candidate Bob Dole appears at a rally for Repugnican Tea Party nutjob Sarah Palin in Raleigh, N.C., in November 2008.

Bob Dole - Sarah Palin Campaigns In Raleigh Three Days Before Election

Getty Images

Repugnican Mitt Romney will be the 2012 Repugnican Tea Party presidential candidate. And he will lose to Barack Obama in November 2012.

Romney consistently appears in the top three favorites of Repugnican Tea Party members for the 2012 Repugnican Tea Party presidential nomination in recent nationwide polls. He usually ranks under Mike Huckabee but above Sarah Palin.

A Feb. 24-Feb. 28 NBC/Wall Street Journal poll, for instance, put Huckabee at 25 percent, Romney at 21 percent, has-been Newt Gingrich at 13 percent, and Palin at a measly 12 percent.

A Feb. 19-Feb. 20 Gallup poll put Huckabee at 18 percent, Romney at 16 percent, Palin also at 16 percent, and Gingrich at 9 percent.

Finally, a Feb. 12-Feb. 15 Newsweek/Daily Beast poll put Romney at 19 percent, Huckabee at 18 percent, and Palin at 10 percent.

It’s a safe bet, I think, to write off Palin and Gingrich (and anyone else) and to narrow it down to Romney and Huckabee.

Huckabee is doing only slightly better than is Romney in most polls, and the closer that we get to November 2012, the more the crotchety Huckabee will remind Repugnican Tea Party voters of 2008 presidential loser John McCainosaurus, I believe. Their angry, bitter, old white guy lost in November 2008 to the much younger (gasp!) black guy by 7 percent of the popular vote, and they don’t want a repeat of that, I’m sure.*

Huckabee’s latest trips are asserting falsely that Barack Obama grew up in his father’s homeland of Kenya (Obama actually grew up in Hawaii and in Indonesia [mostly in Hawaii] – doesn’t Huckabee pay attention to the birthers?) and that recent best-actress winner Natalie Portman is awful for being an unwed pregnant woman, quite reminiscent of Repugnican retard (that’s redundant…) Dan Quayle’s remark way back in 1992 that the fictitious television character of Murphy Brown, who on the TV show had had a child out of wedlock, was a horrible example for others.

Huckabee, a former Southern Baptist minister, is living in the distant past. The majority of Americans no longer give a shit whether a woman chooses to have a baby inside or outside of marriage. The majority of Americans correctly believe it to be the woman’s business and no one fucking else’s. (And they know that Barack Obama was not raised in Kenya.)

Romney, on the other hand, is expected to avoid social/culture-war issues in his quest for the White House and to emphasize the nation’s economic woes. After all, for him to emphasize social/culture-war issues would only emphasize the fact that he is a Mormon, which is troublesome not only for anti-theocratic progressives like me (I’m a gay progressive, so there’s no way in hell that I’d ever vote for an active Mormon), but for Huckabee’s base of non-Mormon “Christo”fascists, the majority of whom believe that Mormonism isn’t Christian.

Already Romney has coined his “Obama Misery Index,” which is predicated on convincing the majority of the American voters that we went right from Bill Clinton to Barack Obama – that the eight, long, nightmarish years of rule by the unelected BushCheneyCorp regime never fucking happened. (George W. Bush inherited a federal budget surplus from Bill Clinton but ended his two unelected terms with a record federal budget deficit.)

Romney also is parroting Repugnican icon Ronald Reagan’s “trickle-down” economics (even more tax breaks for the corporations will result in more jobs for Americans, Romney is lying), which never worked and which never will.

While Romney is launching a campaign of blatant fucking lies that the national economy was just fine until Barack Obama came along and that Romney has the solutions for our nation’s economic ills, Romney at least is focusing on what the majority of the 2012 voters care about: their pocketbooks (and not, say, Natalie Portman’s Murphy-Brown-like pregnancy).

And let’s face it: Romney is a lot more telegenic than is the wall-eyed Huckabee, too. In presidential (hell, in almost all) politics today, how you look matters. It should not, but it does.

Further, Romney inexplicably became governor of the blue state of Massachusetts (for one four-year term from 2003 to 2007), so he presumedly has more experience appealing to “swing voters” than does Huckabee, who was governor of the red state of Arkansas for more than two four-year terms (as the state’s lieutenant governor he had assumed a portion of the previous governor’s term in 1996 and then was elected as the state’s governor in 1998 and re-elected in 2002).

Huckabee, unlike Romney, never has had to play to an audience of voters who actually have two brain cells to rub together, and what plays well in Arkansas (cue the banjo) doesn’t play well nationwide, which Huckabee is going to discover.

There are other factors in Romney’s presidential loss in 2012 as well, such as the fact that it’s unlikely for an incumbent president running for re-election to lose his bid. Jimmy Carter’s loss in his re-election bid to Ronald Reagan in 1980, and George H.W. Bush’s loss in his 1992 re-election bid to Bill Clinton were some exceptions, not the rule. Even George W. Bush eked out a second term in 2004, with 50.7 percent of the popular vote. (Had Hurricane Katrina happened before the 2004 election, instead of the following year, I have no doubt that Gee Dubya would have been only a one-term president.)

Losing a presidential election much more often than not is the end of a politician’s presidential aspirations. Richard Nixon lost in 1960 to John F. Kennedy but then won the White House in 1968, but in my lifetime (I was born in 1968), this was the rare exception, not the rule. Since 1964, presidential election losers Barry Goldwater, Hubert Humphrey, George McGovern, Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, Walter Mondale, Michael Dukakis, George H.W. Bush, Bob Dole, Al Gore, John Kerry and John McCainosaurus did not, have not or (probably) never will run for president again.

So you would think that members of the Repugnican (Tea) Party would prefer to sit 2012 out, given the uphill battle, but Romney and Huckabee have been out of elected office for a while now, and they probably don’t want to risk becoming more obscure over the course of another four more years, only to possibly be replaced in popularity in 2016 by an upstart (say, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie or Ohio Gov. John Kasich or Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels or maybe even Lousiana Gov. Bobby Jindal – and Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour is termed out in 2012).

And, I suppose, the lure of the White House is just too appealing to too many egomaniacs, even if it’s a quixotic quest — even if, as in Mitt Romney’s case, rather than being the next Ronald Reagan (a title already claimed by Repugnican Tea Party Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker), he’s much more likely to end up like the stiff and yawn-inducing Bob Dole did in 1996, losing to Bill Clinton by 8.5 percent of the popular vote.**

*While Romney is a deceptively youthful-looking [64 years old] and Huckabee actually is younger than Romney, at 55 years old, to me and to most other people, I surmise, Romney appears to be the younger of the two.

**Although, to be fair and balanced, I think it’s possible that Romney will lose to Obama in 2012 by a smaller margin than McCainosaurus did in 2008.

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