Tag Archives: United States Senate

Best-case scenario: Dems win Senate, decide next high-court justice

APF/Getty Images photo

Two pussy grabbers in a pod: Brett Kavanaugh and “President” Pussygrabber shake hands after the “president” announced Kavanaugh’s nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court in July.

I never would predict that the Democrats will win the U.S. Senate back in November as well as the U.S. House of Representatives. (Fivethirtyeight.com right now, as I type this sentence, gives the Dems an 81.3 percent chance of winning back the House, but only a 32.6 percent chance of winning back the Senate.)

Still, after our ongoing long national nightmare, I can dream.

I believe U.S. Supreme Court “justice” nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s accuser, Christine Blasey Ford, that back in the early 1980s, when he was 17 years old and she was 15 years old, he drunkenly sexually assaulted her (gee, can we add under-aged drinking to the sexual assault?).

We already have one known sex fiend on the nation’s high court; we don’t need another. (Nor, for that matter, do we need yet another right-wing white man; the court has not been representative and reflective of the U.S. population forever.)

Because of the statute of limitations, it’s too late to prosecute Kavanaugh, but in most cases 17 years old is old enough for an act to be indicative of one’s character, I believe, and because I believe Kavanaugh’s accuser, I believe that he is unfit to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court, his radical-right-wing views aside.

Anyone who can’t understand why a victim of sexual assault would remain silent for years (Ford did recount the sexual assault to her therapist in 2012) probably hasn’t been the victim of a sexual assault. Especially if the perpetrator has power and status, of course a victim easily could choose to remain silent, expecting (often if not usually correctly) to be even further victimized if she or he were to report the incident.

The Anita Hill debacle didn’t happen until 1991; she was treated atrociously, including by perennial presidential wannabe Joe Biden (a DINO) and by soulless mercenary David Brock, who went on to work for/with DINO Billary Clinton (because, you know, she’s a feminist).

If it was that bad for Anita Hill in the early 1990s, how much better do you think that it was for Christine Blasey Ford in the early 1980s? Her perpetrator went to prep school and then to Yale. He had a future, you see; hers, on the other hand, was disposable.

So this is what I’m hoping — dreaming — will happen: Brett Kavanaugh will go down in flames, as he deserves. There won’t be enough time before the November mid-term elections for the treasonous Repugnicans to try to ram through the installation of another Nazi on the U.S. Supreme Court with a simple majority Senate vote instead of the historically required 60 votes (as they did with Neil Gorsuch, whose seat on the Supreme Court is stolen property).

Then, the Dems will take back the Senate in November, and one of two things will happen:

(1) They won’t allow “President” Pussygrabber to put another wingnut on the high court — they will stick to the simple-majority Senate vote requirement that the Repugnicans have felt was just fine for Gorsuch and now for Kavanaugh. (Let the Repugnican traitors have a taste of their own bitter medicine; their “nuclear-option” change in the Senate rules should remain in place.)

The best that Pussygrabber would be able to do in this scenario is to put a moderate on the bench, as Obama was willing to do (with the Senate controlled by the opposing political party) with Merrick Garland.

Or (2) if they really find their spines (which is not nearly as likely as is scenario No. 1), the Senate Democrats will simply do what the Repugnicans did during President Obama’s last year in office: simply refuse to put anyone new on the bench until after the next presidential election. (Yertle McConnell proclaimed that democracy demanded that!)

If the Repugnicans did nothing wrong by depriving Obama of the presidential right to name a U.S. Supreme Court justice in the last year of his presidency, then they will have nothing to bitch about.

I tell you what: If the Democrats actually recapture the Senate in November, a feat in and of itself given the electoral map, and then actually refuse to allow Pussygrabber to put another “justice” on the Supreme Court — finally showing that what’s good for the goose is good for the gander — I probably will switch my voter registration back from independent to Democrat.*

The Repugnican traitors shamelessly play hardball while the Democrats cluelessly try to sing “Kumbaya.” Until and unless the Democrats’ spines finally calcify, they don’t deserve our full support.

*I had changed from Green to Democrat to be able to vote for Bernie Sanders in the 2016 presidential primary, but after the anti-Bernie Democratic National Committee e-mails were released in July 2016, I changed to independent (“no party preference” here in California) out of rage and disgust.

The Democratic Party would have to impress the hell out of me for me to ever join it again.

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

California Democratic Party endorses Kevin de León, snubs Cryptkeeper

Reuters photo

Hopefully, come January 2019, these will be the two U.S. senators for the great state of California, the vanguard of national change that scares the unholy living shit out of the mouth-breathing, knuckle-dragging, MAGA-cap-wearing teatards among us.

Wow.

Last night the leaders of the California Democratic Party “took a step to the left, endorsing liberal state lawmaker Kevin de León for [U.S.] Senate in a stinging rebuke of Democratic [U.S.] Sen. Dianne Feinstein,” reports The Los Angeles Times.

The L.A. Times continues:

… The endorsement was an embarrassment for Feinstein, who is running for a fifth full [six-year] term, and indicates that Democratic activists in California have soured on her reputation for pragmatism and deference to bipartisanship as [“President” Pussygrabber] and a Republican-led Congress are attacking Democratic priorities on immigration, healthcare and environmental protections.

De León, a former state Senate leader from Los Angeles, received 65 percent of the vote of about 330 members of the state party’s executive board — more than the 60 percent needed to secure the endorsement. Feinstein, who pleaded with party leaders meeting in Oakland this weekend not to endorse any candidate, received 7 percent, and 28 percent voted for “no endorsement.” …

The fact that Cryptkeeper Feinstein had lobbied the state party to make no endorsement at all — because she was fearful of losing it (recall that in February, De León came just short of winning the state party’s endorsement) — speaks volumes of her rotten and rotting character. I’m sure that if she had thought she would win the endorsement, she would have had no problem with the endorsement vote at all, because she is a corrupt, craven, self-serving, anti-democratic (and, ironically, anti-Democratic) old bat.

The Times news article continues:

… “We have presented Californians with the first real alternative to the worn-out Washington playbook in a quarter-century,” De León said in a statement shortly after the endorsement was announced.

It’s not clear that the endorsement will have a significant effect on the general election. Feinstein crushed De León in the June primary, winning every county and finishing in first place with 44 percent of the overall vote. De León finished far behind with 12 percent, which was enough for a second-place finish and a ticket to the November election under the state’s top-two primary system.

The endorsement can come with hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign money, which the De León campaign will have to help raise, as well as party volunteers and political organizing assistance. De León needs that support to increase his odds of victory in November. Feinstein had $7 million in campaign cash socked away as of May, 10 times what De León had. …

It is true that in the June 5 California primary election, Cryptkeeper, with her superior name recognition, garnered 44.2 percent of the vote and De León garnered 12.1 percent, but there were more than 30 candidates for U.S. Senate on the ballot, at least 15 of whom garnered around 1 percent or more of the vote.

We will see how the votes for these many other candidates who were on the June 5 ballot resettle in November.

It’s true that Cryptkeeper has an advantage. She’s been around since dirt, so she’s well-known in California, and she is a multi-millionaire, so money is no object for her.

And, because she’s Repugnican Lite — among other things, she voted for the Vietraq War and believes that it’s A-OK for the federal government to perpetrate mass spying upon its own citizens, contrary to the U.S. Constitution; actually wanted to make flag-burning a crime, contrary to the U.S. Constitution; just this year for some reason flipped her position on the death penalty; and in the Senate she votes with “President” Pussygrabber’s agenda 26 percent of the time* — she might win in November if she garners enough of the center-right vote.

California’s Repugnican voters might see Cryptkeeper, quite correctly, as the more Repugnican of their two choices. That said, Cryptkeeper’s political centerpiece always has been gun control — after all, the 1978 assassinations of Harvey Milk and George Moscone launched her political career — and I think that it would be difficult for many if not most of California’s Repugnicans to cast a vote for her, knowing how much they want to keep their home arsenals for “protection” against the supposed endless parades of freedom-hating bogeymen who are out to get them.

Kevin de León made it into the top two after the June 5 primary — and that’s all that he had to do in that election to make it to November’s election — and now that he has the formal support of the California Democratic Party, De León has a real shot at unseating Cryptkeeper, who can’t count on any help from the state party, to my knowledge.

Even if Cryptkeeper ekes out another win, she will be politically weaker than she ever has been, and no doubt she’ll get no more than one more term, not just because of her advanced age (she’s 85 years old) but also because of her rapidly declining political capital here in California. (If she were so fucking beloved here, she would have garnered a lot more than 44.2 percent in the June 5 primary — after all, she has been a U.S. senator “for” California since 1992.)

I’m proud that the California Democratic Party endorsed Kevin de León last night. It’s a step in the right direction for a state that in June 2016 voted for Billary Clinton over Bernie Sanders, 53.1 percent to 46 percent (still pretty close for someone who was supposed to have been as beloved as was Billary!).

Thing is, political change is a long, hard slog. Corrupt, craven, self-serving sellouts like Cryptkeeper Feinstein and Billary Clinton don’t just give up their power. We, the people, have to take it from them, have to relieve them of their self-imposed pressure to act like Repugnicans for their own (real and/or perceived) personal and political gain.

Often, we don’t win the first time.

Case in point: Bernie Sanders started running for office in the 1970s, running for governor of Vermont and for the U.S. Senate for Vermont — and losing badly — and he didn’t win an election until he lowered his sights and became mayor of Burlington, Vermont, by a mere 10 votes in 1981.

Bernie finally made it to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1990, and then made it to the U.S. Senate in 2006. And then, as I’ve noted many times, he came impressively close to Billary “Crown Me Already” Clinton in 2016 when he ran for the Democratic Party presidential nomination, and had it been a fair process, he probably would have won the nomination.

Bernie’s electoral history suggests that he persists and that eventually he wins.

That’s what all of us progressives must do.

Even if Kevin de León doesn’t win in November — at this point, now that he has the state party’s endorsement, I give him at least about a 40-60 chance of winning — he has accomplished something significant, something to build upon.

P.S. I support Kevin de León primarily because he’s progressive (he’s not perfect, but he’s progressive), but it’s an added bonus that if he were elected in November, the largest racial/ethnic group in California, Latinos, who outnumber whites in the state, finally would be represented in the U.S. Senate.

Latinos have been underrepresented in California and elsewhere for years and years.

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Cryptkeeper’s support low for an incumbent in new statewide poll

Image result for feinstein millionaire

Could 85-year-old “Democratic” U.S. Sen. Dianne “Cryptkeeper” Feinstein finally be forced into a long-past-due retirement? She polls at only 36 percent among the state’s electorate, with a whopping 46 percent of the voters still undecided, and only she and actual Democrat Kevin de León will appear on the November ballot, due to California’s “top-two” primary system.

This is interesting: Back in February, only 37 percent of the delegates to the California state Democratic Party’s annual convention endorsed Dianne “Cryptkeeper” Feinstein, who has been a U.S. senator “for” California since 1992 and who seeks yet another term now even though she just turned 85 years old.*

The state-party delegates much preferred Cryptkeeper’s challenger, state Sen. Kevin de León, who recently completed a stint as the president of the state Senate; the delegates voted for him by 54 percent. (Unfortunately, to nab the state party’s endorsement, De León would have had to have garnered 60 percent of the vote, too high a bar, in my opinion.)

The establishmentarian/Repugnican-Lite set claimed at the time that De León’s win over Cryptkeeper (at least percentage-wise) at the convention was among only party nerds who skew to the left and that Cryptkeeper’s paltry 37 percent would be much higher among the general, not-all-Democratic state electorate.

Yet a USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times poll taken from June 6 through June 17 shows that only 36 percent of the state’s voters right now intend to vote for Cryptkeeper in November, while 18 percent prefer De León, and a huge chunk of them, 46 percent, are undecided.

It seems to me that the delegates to the state party convention had their pulse on the mood of the state’s electorate far more than they were given credit for.

Thus far in the vote count for the June 5 California primary election (the election won’t be certified until July 13), Cryptkeeper has garnered 44.2 percent of the vote to De León’s 12 percent, indicating that Crytkeeper was more popular among those who voted in the primary than she is among the state’s electorate overall, and that the opposite is true for De León.

Yes, polling at 18 percent, De León still has a long way to go against a candidate who has millions more dollars than he does and who has the advantage of much greater name recognition, having been in office significantly longer than newly minted 18-year-old voters even have been alive.

But as The Los Angeles Times reported, “Though Feinstein is ahead [of De León] by nearly 20 points, it’s a low level of support for such a long-serving incumbent, said GOP strategist Mike Murphy, an analyst for the poll.”

Yup. The state’s voters aren’t enthusiastic about Cryptkeeper anymore, and methinks that that is because for years and years now, the state’s voters simply have been resigned to having no other choice. Cryptkeeper is a lot like Billary Clinton: the center-right “Democratic” candidate (both of them voted for the Vietraq War, by the way) who should have hung it up years ago but who refuses to go the fuck away and whom the Democratic Party establishment is going to shove down our throats anyway.

Don’t get me wrong; I hope but I don’t predict that De León will win in November, but with 46 percent of the voters still undecided, he still has a shot. Again, with Cryptkeeper having held on to “her” Senate seat with a bony death grip since 1992, her measly 36 percent in the recent USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times poll should have her shitting her Depends.**

What will be interesting will be to see if Cryptkeeper actually faces De León or if she does what she does best: runs and hides. The Sacramento Bee notes that the last time that Cryptkeeper agreed to debate an opponent was in 2000, almost two fucking decades ago, so I don’t expect to see Cryptkeeper actually deign to debate De León even once.

Such a move should be fatal for her (recall that Billary Clinton cravenly backed out of a final debate that she’d already agreed to have with Bernie Sanders — again, if it weren’t for their age difference, I’d surmise that these two Repugnican Lites were separated at birth); but Cryptkeeper hasn’t been held accountable for the past several elections now, so we’ll see if she can continue her cakewalk that her overabundance of privilege always had made possible for her — thus far.

P.S. I’ll note, for some reason, that his past week I passed by Kevin de León on my way home from work (I work near the state Capitol and thus I sometimes see state politicos). It was the first time that I’d ever seen him in person.

Not knowing what else to say, and not wanting to interrupt his schedule (he was walking with someone else and presumably had a destination and a purpose), I simply ejected, “I hope you win!” “Thank you,” he replied, and I kept walking, again, not wanting to detain him.

He strikes me as a genuinely nice guy.

You’d never see Her Highness the Cryptkeeper walking about in public, vulnerable to the rabble.

*Fuck you; no, I’m not “ageist.” (I do, after all, still support Bernie Sanders for president, and he’s 76.) Even though to me Cryptkeeper often has appeared to be addled on camera because of her advanced age, even if she has no severe age-related cognitive issues (I can give her the benefit of that doubt), she was born in 1933, for fuck’s sake, and that fact, coupled with the fact that she’s a multi-millionaire, has meant that she has been quite removed from the vast majority of her constituents.

She could only guess as to what our commoners’ lives are like, but that’s an exercise in empathy that she probably avoids as much as possible.

**Yeah, that probably is ageist, but it was spontaneous and I found it at least mildly funny, so I’m keeping it…

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Sen. Cryptkeeper to announce positions on horseless carriages, child labor, iceboxes, moving pictures, etc.

Tales from the Crypt: The Complete First Season (DVD) - cover

California U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, who turns 85 years old this month, and who is pictured above, I’m pretty sure, suddenly conveniently supports things that she long used to oppose, which, she assures us, has nothing to do with the November election.

In Tuesday’s primary election in California, I wanted, above all else, only two things: for actual Democrat Kevin de León to make it into November’s election for U.S. senator against incumbent Repugnican Lite Dianne “Cryptkeeper” Feinstein and for Repugnican Lite Antonio Villaraigosa not to make it into November’s election for governor against Gavin Newsom.

I got both wishes.

Stick a fork in Villaraigosa; he’s done. Thus far he is at a distant third place in California’s top-two (a.k.a. “jungle”) primary system (in which the top two vote-getters advance to the general election, regardless of their party affiliation), well behind the No. 2 candidate, a Repugnican whose sorry ass Newsom will hand to him on a silver platter in November.

Don’t get me wrong; Newsom is competent but imperfect, and we’ll see how he governs the state. I am hopeful, but I make no starry-eyed predictions.

The real race for November in California, then, is between Kevin de León and Cryptkeeper, and, sadly, if I’m to be honest, it might take Cryptkeeper’s death to take De León to D.C., because Californians stupidly stubbornly remain attached to Cryptkeeper.

Thus far, Cryptkeeper has 44 percent of the primary vote to De León’s 11.5 percent, with a mostly unknown Repugnican in third place, approaching 9 percent.

Very apparently November’s will be the second U.S. Senate race in California in a row in which a Repugnican wasn’t on the ballot, but in which two Democrats were. (In 2016, it was Kamala Harris and the awful DINO Loretta Sanchez, who never was serious competition against Harris, who won largely by just not acting insanely, as Sanchez did routinely.)

Cryptkeeper has advantages that De León does not: She’s been around since the invention of dirt, and thus her name recognition in California is incredibly high, and, being a multi-millionaire, she has millions of her own dollars that she is pumping into her race (at least $5 million thus far).

She also, of course, has the staunch, blindly obedient support of the so-called Democratic establishment, the very same fucking geniuses who thought that it was a great idea to run the widely despised Repugnican Lite Billary Clinton — instead of the wildly popular genuine populist Bernie Sanders — against Pussygrabber.

Also, because Cryptkeeper is far more like a moderate Repugnican than an actual Democrat (that is, progressive), my guess is that many of California’s Repugnican voters, lacking a member of their own party on the ballot for U.S. Senate, will hold their noses and vote for Cryptkeeper, believing, correctly, that she’s far better for them and their treasure chests and their backasswards social and socioeconomic views than is the actual Democrat in the U.S. Senate race, Kevin de León.

When I say that it might have to take the death of the soon-to-be 85-year-old Cryptkeeper to put De León in the U.S. Senate, I’m being at least half-serious.

In the meantime, it’s nauseatingly amusing to see the new policy positions that Cryptkeeper is taking now in order to try to fend off any threat that De León might pose to her.

Cryptkeeper just recently reversed her stance on the death penalty, which she used to staunchly support but now conveniently opposes, and just recently conveniently reversed her stance on the use of recreational marijuana (only after the majority of the state’s voters approved it in November 2016).

There has been no news yet on how Cryptkeeper feels about other social issues and technological developments, such as indentured servitude, indoor plumbing, child labor, horseless carriages, electricity, penicillin, The Pill, and even whether or not we should allow women to vote.

It will be exciting over the next five months to hear how she has “evolved” on issues on which she always should have been leading, not fucking following, since she first was elected to the Senate way, way back in 1992.

Californians who vote for Cryptkeeper in November, if they incredibly lazily and stupidly give her yet another term, will get exactly what they deserve: only even more of the same old, same old. Literally as well as figuratively.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Et tu, Al?

Updated below (on Friday, November 17, 2017)

In the current climate, it was only a matter of time before someone I really have liked and respected was going to be outed as having acted sexually inappropriately in the past. This time, there is photographic evidence:

Franken gropes the accuser while smiling

That’s Democratic U.S. Sen. Al Franken of Minnesota apparently pretending* to grope a sleeping woman (radio newscaster Leeann Tweeden) during a U.S.O. (United Service Organizations) tour in the Middle East in 2006.

From his expression, he fairly clearly thinks that it’s pretty fucking funny. Of course, it isn’t, which he has acknowledged, and he has apologized for his inappropriate, immature, abusive, disrespectful act, and Tweeden has stated that she accepts his apology and that she doesn’t believe that he should step down.

To me, that’s pretty much case closed.

More disturbing to me than the frat-boy-level photo above is Tweeden’s allegation that Franken, under the guise of rehearsing a skit that he wrote that (rather conveniently) required him to kiss her, kissed her forcefully against her wishes (and gave her tongue, she adds).

Such unwanted contact constitutes sexual battery, in my book, but Franken said that “While I don’t remember the rehearsal for the skit as Leeann does, I understand why we need to listen to and believe women’s experiences.”

He immediately added: “I am asking that an ethics investigation be undertaken, and I will gladly cooperate.”

So: This contact between Franken and Tweeden happened in 2006, before Franken became a U.S. senator in 2009. (And in Tweeden’s own words, “Franken had written some skits for the [U.S.O.] show and brought props and costumes to go along with them. Like many U.S.O. shows before and since, the skits were full of sexual innuendo geared toward a young, male audience.” That’s some context, and context matters.)

The New York Times reports that “Ms. Tweeden said that no one else witnessed the [alleged forced] kiss, and she did not tell the tour’s organizers [about it].” (Indeed, Tweeden’s own words to this effect are here.)

Franken couldn’t have been convicted of sexual battery at the time even if Tweeden had gone to the authorities, because they apparently have different versions of the same event that no one else witnessed. Legally, it seems to me, that’s pretty much that.

It seems to me that absent a felony conviction, which should disqualify anyone from becoming or remaining a U.S. senator, it’s up to the voters of Minnesota to decide Franken’s fate when he comes up for re-election in 2020, assuming that he decides to run again.

It’s probably safe to say that any hope that Franken might have had about running for president in 2020 is dashed — even though “President” Pussygrabber bragged about grabbing women by the pussy and still became “president” — but I refuse to write Franken’s political obituary today. I believe that he can come out better and stronger for this (and that yes, hell — who knows? — he still might become president one day).

No, I don’t condone sexual harassment of any kind, from non-body-contact sexual harassment, such as making unwanted sexual remarks to taking a photo of yourself pretending to grope someone sexually to exposing yourself to someone who doesn’t want to see your goods, to actual body-contact sexual harassment, such as actual groping or forceful, unwanted kissing.

But nor is it productive to take the stance that we should utterly fucking destroy anyone who has misstepped.

That self-righteous revenge-seeking goes beyond justice and becomes a crime in and of itself; that is, to assert that those who can be redeemed cannot be redeemed, but must be destroyed for the rest of their lives, is to commit yet another type of violence against the human spirit.

P.S. Two more things:

One, there seems to be a definite double standard where Democrats and Repugnicans are concerned. Again, “President” Pussygrabber in 2005 bragged, on tape, about grabbing women by the pussy and kissing them without their consent, and yet that was A-OK with enough voters to allow him to take the Oval Office.

Two (which is related to one), what U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore of Alabama has been accused of, especially the under-aged shit, is much worse than what Franken has been accused of (and was photographed doing), but even for a backasswards, right-wing piece of dog shit like Moore, I would say that absent a felony conviction — that is, he had had his day in court and was found guilty by a jury — it still would be up to the voters of Alabama to decide whether or not to send him to the U.S. Senate. (And then the Senate could, I understand, refuse to seat him, although I’m not sure of all of the legalities on that.)

But let’s not compare Al Franken to Roy Moore (or to “President” Pussygrabber). Franken so far has had one accuser, who was an adult at the time. Moore thus far has had at least eight accusers, some of whom were under the age of 18 at the time of their reported events.

Update (Friday, November 17, 2017): Leeann Tweeden said this on “Good Morning America” today: “I didn’t do this [publicize Franken’s actions of 2006] to have him step down. I think Al Franken does a lot of good things in the Senate. You know, I think that’s for the people of Minnesota to decide. I’m not calling for him to step down. That was never my intention.”

She also apparently said of the bullshit comparison of “President” Pussygrabber’s actions to Franken’s, “His [Pussygrabber’s] issues — that’s a whole other thing.”

Yup. More than a dozen women thus far have accused Pussygrabber of having perpetrated sexual harassment to sexual battery.

Sadly, I’ve seen, among others, Slate.com’s otherwise thoughtful and intelligent Mark Joseph Stern and the progressive group Justice Democrats both call for Franken to step down immediately. (And in an e-mail that I received, the Justice Democrats also called for Franken to be replaced with U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison by Minnesota’s governor. I admire Ellison and I supported him for the chair of the Democratic National Committee, but he should run for the U.S. Senate if he wants to be a U.S. senator. Denying Franken due process and summarily replacing him with Ellison is not what I’d call justice or democracy, Justice Democrats!)

We all need to take a deep fucking breath and not be even more outraged than the actual victims are and therefore call for even harsher punishments than they are calling for. (And no, let’s not say that part of the victims’ victimization is that they’re just not outraged enough and that they are too forgiving, so we need to “correct” that. Jesus fucking fuck.)

And yes, as both Stern and Justice Democrats and many others have argued, we who are left of center don’t want to be called hypocrites on the subject of sexual harassment and sexual assault and sexual battery.

But we also need to take each case on its own (each case can vary widely in severity) and not lump all of the cases together, or collapse the many different kinds of sexual violations into one big generic sexual violation because we don’t feel like dealing with shades of gray.

And if we claim that we care about justice, then we need to give the accused the chance to explain him- or herself — and/or to be investigated as fairly and impartially as possible — instead of immediately calling for his or her head on a silver fucking platter so that we can try to look cool by keeping ahead of the news cycle.

Nor should our No. 1 concern be what the fucking Repugnicans will think. They never fucking care what we think, which is why they “win” elections even when they lose them, such as “presidents” George W. Bush and Pussygrabber both did.

*To grope someone is to touch him or her with your hands, and while the incident in the photo widely has been described as a groping, to me it appears to be Franken pretending to be groping or pretending to be about to grope the sleeping woman. Not that even pretending to do so is OK, but it’s not as bad as actually groping. There are levels of bad, for fuck’s sake.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Assorted shit

Why the dick won’t shut the fuck up

In this photo released by ABC former Vice President Dick Cheney ...

Associated Press photo

Gas bag Dick Cheney appears on a political talk show aired this morning in order to (what else?) bash the Obama administration. The Associated Press correctly although too diplomatically deems Cheney’s “public criticism on a successor administration” as “unusual.”

Gay conservative commentator Andrew Sullivan and I agree on one thing (besides our attraction to members of our own sex): Former Vice President Dick Cheney is still talking, more than a year after he left office, because he’s afraid that he might, just might, actually be prosecuted for his war crimes one day.

Politico quotes Sullivan as having stated in an e-mail:

“Cheney’s unprecedentedly aggressive approach … reflects his own knowledge that he has committed war crimes of a very grave sort, war crimes that at some point could lead to prosecution and will undoubtedly lead to historical infamy.”

“If that becomes the prevailing narrative — because it is true — he will go down in history as a man who betrayed the very core principles of Western civilization out of panic and then covered it up,” Sullivan continued. “So he has to change the subject and launch this kind of PR campaign to throw everyone off the scent….

“Cheney is cornered. He knows justice is coming, and he knows that one day the full truth will come out and there will be no hiding. Until then, he will fight and fight and break every taboo that respect for the Constitution and for civil discourse requires.”

Sullivan has been one of the leading voices criticizing the news media — and Politico specifically — for giving Cheney a platform for his rhetorical blasts in interviews without challenging his premises and also forcing him to answer for his own alleged misdeeds in office….

Cheney isn’t fooling anyone, though, isn’t throwing anyone off of his stench. And by keeping himself in the limelight, he is drawing more attention to himself and to his treasonous war crimes. Stupid.

I mean, George W. Bush, a dumbfuck extraordinaire, is smart enough to keep a low profile, and why is Dick Fucking Cheney criticizing the Obama administration when Al Gore, President Bill Clinton’s veep, didn’t routinely criticize the BushCheneyCorp administration, even though there was plenty to criticize?

(I can recall that Gore only made one fiery speech critical of the unelected Bush regime, in the wake of the breaking of the Abu Ghraib House of Horrors scandal to the entire world community. That speech was quite appropriate, given that it had turned out that Americans had treated Iraqi prisoners, most of them innocent of any crime, in a Nazi-like fashion. I don’t believe that during the eight long nightmarish years between January 2001 and January 2009 Gore made more than one or two prominent speeches in which his main topic was criticism of the BushCheneyCorp, yet here is Cheney, who can’t keep himself off of the Sunday morning political shows.)

Anyway, it isn’t like it was Sullivan who made me see the light of the truth. It was in a post titled “Die, Dick, Die!” in October that I wrote:

Cheney, with his latest act his rant against the Obama administration’s handling of Afghanistan (where he would have proclaimed “mission accomplished” already), is trying to salvage his “legacy” by acting as though he really cares about national security instead of war profiteering (he did deliver his war-profiteering corporation Halliburton the Vietraq War, after all), the pundits are chattering, but my best guess is that Cheney is terrified that he might actually be charged as the war criminal that he is and that he therefore is trying to drum up public opinion to be sympathetic toward his sorry, felonious, treasonous ass should justice actually ever be done and he actually be held accountable for the thousands upon thousands of unnecessary deaths of our men and women in uniform and of innocent Iraqi civilians (and many, many other innocent civilians throughout the Middle East).

I also have to wonder if perhaps Tricky Dick still believes that he is in power; maybe that faulty, Grinch-like, two-sizes-too-small heart of his isn’t supplying his brain with enough oxygen. Politico quotes Cheney as having said, when asked how George W. Bush feels about his outspokenness, “I’m the vice president now — ex-vice president. I have the great freedom and luxury of speaking out, saying what I want to say, what I believe. And I have not been discouraged from doing so.” 

“I’m the vice president now”? Sounds like a Freudian slip to me.

Fuck the filibuster!

Rachel Maddow has called — I think — for doing away with the filibuster.* While she focuses on how boring (but how important) the concept of the filibuster is, and calls for renaming the filibuster, what she seems to be aiming at is doing away with the filibuster altogether.

Maddow notes that the filibuster used to require two-thirds, or 67 votes, of the U.S. Senate, to be overcome. The filibuster threshold now stands at 60 votes.

While I believe that a simple majority is good enough in a democracy — we don’t require a presidential candidate to get 60 percent of the vote — I could compromise and put the filibuster at 55 votes. That is one-half of the Senate plus one-tenth of one-half of the Senate. That seems fair enough to me.

(And indeed, the infamous progressive Democratic U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson of Florida has called for a 55-vote filibuster threshold, and you can sign his petition for this more reasonable filibuster threshold at StopSenateStalling.com.)

As Maddow and Grayson note, the filibuster is not contained anywhere in the U.S. Constitution, but is only a Senate rule. Wikipedia notes that Senate rules can be changed by a simple majority vote of the Senate — and that this is what the Repugnicans, during the reign of the unelected Bush regime, threatened to do with their “nuclear option,” to do away with the filibuster, an option that the Democrats thus far have been too pussy to take.

I say: Nuke the motherfuckers. Now. 

The 60-vote filibuster is preventing any progress from being made and has hamstrung the U.S. government.

The 60-vote filibuster reminds me of how the two-thirds vote requirement for the California Legislature to pass the state’s budget has only hamstrung rather than helped my home state’s budget process.

Unfortunately, that ridiculous requirement for a super-majority is contained in the state’s Constitution, and the easiest way to change that would be to amend the state’s Constitution at the ballot box. Many if not most proponents of changing the state’s two-thirds-vote budget-bill requirement are OK with making it a 55-percent-vote requirement instead. I’m OK with that.

Dick Cheney and I actually agree on something!

An Associated Press article on how long it might take the U.S. military to finally stop discriminating against non-heterosexuals reports:

The goal, according to senior defense and military officials, is to avoid the backlash that could result from imposing change too fast. While officials expect resistance from only a minority of service members and believe that it could be contained with discipline, officials fear isolated incidents of violence could erupt as a means of protest.

What does it say of the quality of the individuals in our military that “violence could erupt as a means of protest” against granting equal human and civil rights to everyone in the military?

Actually, though, I don’t think that really is the stupid white men’s concern. I suspect that once again, the stupid old white men are just using our troops as political human shields for themselves. (The members of the unelected Bush regime did that routinely when they tried to morph any valid criticisms of their launching and their handling of their Vietraq War into attacks on our troops.)

It’s the stupid old white men who are far more afraid of the change than are the young people in the military.

Even Dick Cheney, whose daughter is a dyke, has my back on this one. Reports the AP:

According to a Washington Post-ABC News poll, three-quarters of Americans say that they support openly gay people serving in the military. The 75 percent figure is far above the 44 percent of Americans who said so in May 1993.

Former Vice President Dick Cheney, defense secretary in the first Bush administration, said [today] he supports a review of the [“don’t ask, don’t tell”] policy.

“When the chiefs come forward and say we think we can do it, it strikes me it’s time to reconsider the policy,” he said. “I’m reluctant to second-guess the military in this regard.”

Cheney, who has an openly gay daughter, said he thinks society has moved on from staunch opposition to gays serving in the military.

“It’s partly a generational question,” he told ABC’s “This Week,” adding that “things have changed significantly” since the [“DADT”] policy took effect.

“Partly” a generational question? No, it’s almost wholly a generational question.

OK, so I guess that I still have plenty of disagreement with the dick…

Move over, Margaret!

Speaking of dykes, Wanda Sykes is my new favorite comedian.

I recently bought the DVD of her HBO stand-up special “I’ma Be Me,” which was recorded in Washington, D.C., in August, and my boyfriend and I have watched it twice.

Wanda rocks.

Margaret Cho, a self-proclaimed fag hag, has been the default gay guy’s comedian for some years now, and I still love ya, Margaret, but Wanda is funnier and fresher than you are.

Wanda’s political sensibilities seem to be much sharper than those of Margaret, who, if her autobiographical claims about herself are accurate, apparently spent a lot of years partying before she woke up to the political scene circa 2003 or 2004.

And while Margaret’s material is stale, Wanda’s is new to me.

Wanda comes to her comedy from the perspective of being a black lesbian. (She came out in November 2008, after the odious Prop H8 passed here in California.)

In her HBO stand-up special Wanda doesn’t talk too much about lesbianism — her comedy is much less sexually graphic and less scatological than is Margaret’s — but her take on what it’s like to be black in white America is hilarious and even eye-opening.

“White people are looking at you!” she intones throughout her routine, and while it’s comedy, it rings true. Her bit about finally being able to buy a whole watermelon at the supermarket — now that Barack Obama is president — is hilarious and probably only she could get away with something like that.

Wanda’s riff on pirates (yes, pirates — a reference to when the Somali pirates were in the news) also is ROLF-level good, and the way that she brings back certain themes throughout her routine is masterfully funny.  

Wanda’s 15-minute performance at the 2009 White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner probably gave her the most national exposure that she’s ever had, but, as she says right off in “I’ma Be Me,” she had to hold back at the correspondents’ dinner.

She’s much better when she’s off-leash, so to speak, as she is in “I’ma Be Me.”

The only criticism that I have of “I’ma Be Me” is that Wanda uses at least two or three of the jokes that she already used at the correspondents’ dinner. She’s allowed to rehash her own material, of course, but you would think that she would have realized that many if not most of us had already heard those jokes.

Wanda’s facial expressions and her willingness to move around on stage liberally add entertainment value to her already-funny material, and she’s so adorable that even when she chuckles at her own jokes it’s quite forgivable.

You owe it to yourself to watch “I’ma Be Me,” whether it’s still showing periodically on HBO or whether you buy the DVD (such as via amazon.com).

Out to pasture for the McCainosaurus?

There is talk that Repugnican John McCainosaurus might lose the Repugnican primary to his even wingnuttier challenger, J.D. Hayworth, ending McCainosaurus’ stint in the U.S. Senate, which began in 1987.

Reports The Associated Press:

Phoenix – Defeated just two years ago as the Republican presidential candidate and with his bonafides as a true conservative again being challenged, John McCain finds himself in a struggle to get even his party’s nomination for another term in the Senate.

Many conservatives and “tea party” activists are lining up behind Republican challenger and former [right-wing] talk radio host J.D. Hayworth, reflecting a rising tide of voter frustration with incumbent politicians. Only 40 percent of Arizonans have a favorable view of McCain’s job performance.

Faced with his toughest re-election battle ever, McCain has moved to the right on several hot-button issues, like gays in the military and climate change, and has built a campaign war chest of more than $5 million. Former running mate Sarah Palin and newly elected Republican Sen. Scott Brown, both popular with conservatives, are pitching in.

Hayworth, who will officially launch his campaign [tomorrow], began using his talk show on conservative radio station KFYI to drum up opposition to McCain.

“You have a consistent conservative challenger and an incumbent who calls himself a maverick but in fact is a moderate,” Hayworth said, outlining what he views as the central choice for conservative GOP primary voters in August.

McCain is launching his own statewide tour, complete with visits next month from Palin and Brown, who already has recorded calls asking Republicans to support McCain.

The four-term senator and his allies also are taking aim at Hayworth. In December, they filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission arguing that the talk show host was a de facto candidate and his radio station was providing a corporate gift by allowing him to campaign on the air. And they’re attacking Hayworth’s 12-year record as a [U.S. representative] representing the eastern suburbs of Phoenix….

Democrat Harry Mitchell defeated Hayworth four years ago, winning the GOP-dominated [U.S. House] district amid a rough national climate for Republicans and questions about Hayworth’s dealings with disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff.

Hayworth ran a conservative campaign emphasizing his opposition to illegal immigration, but he was dogged by a reputation for being an angry and combative partisan, highlighted by an editorial in the state’s largest newspaper recommending “Mitchell over the bully.”

Hayworth said he decided to quit the [right-wing radio talk] show and run for [the U.S. Senate] in late January after holding “town-hall meetings five days a week” with his conservative listeners.

They are angry, Hayworth says, about McCain’s history of teaming with Democrats on key issues. In the past decade McCain has worked with Sen. Russ Feingold of Wisconsin on campaign finance reform and with the late Sen. Ted Kennedy of Massachusetts on an immigration bill that would have created a pathway to citizenship for illegal immigrants….

A poll last month by the Phoenix-based Behavior Research Center found [McCain’s] lowest approval rating since January 1994, when McCain was in the midst of the “Keating Five” scandal in which he and four other U.S. senators were accused of trying to intimidate regulators on behalf of a real-estate developer later convicted of fraud.

McCain’s once-powerful support from independents is particularly lacking; just 38 percent approved of his performance…. Arizona allows independents to vote in primaries. They could make the difference in a state where 30 percent of the electorate doesn’t belong to a political party….

While I suspect that the McCainosaurus will beat Hayworth, who I remember only as a fugly, goofy-looking

(  )

local television sportscaster when I lived in Phoenix more than a decade ago, it would be hilarious if the McCainosaurus were to lose the Repugnican primary to a tea-baggin’, mouth-breathing, Sarah Palin-Quayle-like stupid white guy whose main platform, like that of Repugnican former U.S. Rep. Tom “Bring Back the Literacy Tests!” Tancredo, is to beat up, like the ignorant bully that he is, on powerless, brown-skinned, “illegal” immigrants, who, as Wanda Sykes correctly points out in “I’ma Be Me,” aren’t criminals, but who just want to make a better life for themselves. (I would tell her joke, but I don’t want to spoil it for you; you’ll just have to watch “I’ma Be Me.”)

*Wikipedia’s entry “filibuster” states:

A filibuster, or “speaking or talking out a bill,” is a form of obstruction in a legislature or other decision-making body whereby one attempts to delay or entirely prevent a vote on a proposal by extending a debate on that proposal. A popular saying is “filibuster it to death!”

The term “filibuster” was first used in 1851. It was derived from the Spanish [word] “filibustero,” meaning “pirate” or “freebooter.” … 

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Who is the bigger asshole:

Disgraced Illinois Gov. Rod “U.$. $enate $eat for $ale” Blahblahblahblah for having appointed a replacement for Barack Obama in the U.S. Senate — when he had been informed that anyone he’d appoint would be rejected — or former Illinois Attorney General Roland Burris, Blahblahblahblah’s appointee, who is in Washington, D.C., demanding that he be seated as a bona fide U.S. senator for Illinois?

To make it worse, Burris, although he denies it, appears to be playing the race card: You’re going to deny a U.S. Senate seat to a man who would be the only black man in the U.S. Senate, now that Obama is movin’ on up to the White House?

Um, under these circumstances, yes. Hell fucking yes.

Burris should put his race card back in his bag of tricks and go back the fuck home.

It’s bad enough that Blahblahblahblah has made it all about his baby-boomer self and has cast a pall over incoming President Barack Obama’s infant presidency. Now Burris has to compound an already shitty situation by threatening to even sue to be seated in the U.S. Senate.

Burris states — probably correctly — that as Blahblahblahblah remains Illinois’ governor (because he won’t fucking resign like a decent person would and he hasn’t yet been removed from office), Blahblahblahblah’s appointment of him to the U.S. Senate is perfectly legal. However, my understanding is that the Senate also legally may refuse to seat Burris or any other senator whom the Senate deems unsuitable for office.

And Burris is unsuitable because he is the fruit of the poisoned tree.

If he truly doesn’t understand this, then he is too incompetent to be a U.S. senator, and if he understands this but doesn’t give a shit because he just wants to be a U.S. senator, then his character is too lacking to be a U.S. senator.

Burris needs to step the fuck aside so that the people of Illinois can be represented by someone who isn’t tainted by the incredibly corrupt Gov. Blahblahblahblah.

Illinois Senate appointee Roland Burris during a new conference ...

Associated Press photo

If Roland Burris wants to be a U.S. senator so badly, he should become so the old-fashioned way: by winning an election — not by being appointed by a crook. Burris claims that he isn’t playing the race card: “I have never in my life, in all my years of being elected to office, thought anything about race,” he has proclaimed. If that is true (and it isn’t), then he would be the very first black politician in the history of the United States of America who has never thought anything about race…

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized