Archive for June, 2013

no, picking out random names from phone books isn’t good political policy

Friday, June 28th, 2013

I’m always amused by lines such as this one:

No, we know. It’s just that you should have been able to pick someone from a phone book and beaten the pretender of a president.

This is a response to “And some GOP folks wonder exactly how did Obama win the last election? Really?“, a response itself to a ranking of how the 2012 Republican field is holding up post election, in response to Gingrich being tapped as co-host of Crossfire.

A proper response comes next:

Why didn’t they do that? I am inundated with phone books. Just possibly it is not quite as easy as you think.

There’s just this whole pile of cliches you want to dump away.  No, random name from phone book would not have beaten Obama.  I’ll take Obama over Random name from phone book.  Also, random name from phone book would not have beaten Carter in 1980 or Bush in 1992.  Also, I think Kerry did better against Bush in 2004 than would’ve random name from phone book, and ditto Dukakis against Bush in 1988.

Okay.  Now, skip to this.  It’s a sighting of a cringe worthy Hillary Clinton for President shirt.  It’s not really a prosect I look forward to, but reading the comments I’m tempted to say “sure” just because it’d annoy these people.

It is all they have left. And when Obama leaves, they are going to have to find a new one. Hillary is really the only candidate. And it is going to be even stranger and more creepy than the Obama cult.

Obama had no reputation to smear, really, the first time around, and he got a weird pass for some reason for his first term. None of this applies to Clinton, who is despised by not only Republicans but by plenty of moderates and hardcore Obamaniacs, too. On top of that, the scandal at DoS is going to hit her square in the jaw.

Yes, this is the “Benghazi!” bit, which… has probably hit her in the jaw about as much as it’s going to.

I go back and forth. There is a certain kind of suburban woman and their beta male husbands who fucking love Hillary. And their votes matter because they are swing votes. They voted for Bush in 04 because they were worried about terrorism. They voted for Obama in 08 and 12 because of birth control and abortion and the thought that if their little snowfake got herself knocked up they might be able to take care of it.

Hm… great, the slighting of any male who might support Hillary Clinton by questioning his masculinity.  (Aren’t we getting that a bit with Obama being gay?)   Anyway, he’s neglect that whole “white working class” “Annie Oakley” routine through the 2008 primaries — or is that a brief moment of political positioning and posturing brought by circumstances?

Anyway, Hillary Clinton’s surfacing in the clouds at the moment — I’ve always stated that I much prefer Obama’s 2012 election campaign of — having to defend a messy record — than 2008 of — urm… Hope? … but grounded into the ground, we see the preminitions that Hillary Clinton would take center stage in the 2014 Election campaigns.

As these Reason commenters speculate on who could undo Hillary Clinton … urm… Howard Dean, maybe?

And as for Republican presidential candidates doing good after their election campaign… Fred Karger is getting some write-up for shifting Mormon positioning on gay marriage to one of not active hostility.  But who remembers Fred Karger?

when the 60s become the new 50s.

Thursday, June 27th, 2013

I’ve read bits and drabs from a book on American Popular Culture, years 1830 (ie: the rise of Jacksonian Democracy) on to publication date.  Something that struck me in my breezy browsing: Baseball.  What accounts for its popularity in the late 19th century?  In a rapidly changing country, it tapped into a nostalgic yearnings to a simpler time —

— So we have a perpetual popular culture artifact that feeds and refeeds into nostalgic yearnings from its very inception.

Likewise, I was reading a recent issue of either The Nation or In These Times, and ran into an odd comment which I took the note of the quotation, but have lost the article it comes to.  Here it is:

played the mom on the Wonder Years, the quintessential television program about the halcyon days of apple pie America that Tea Partiers pine for

That’d be 1968.  Or about then.  To 1972, I think?  Or, in the lexicon of how we define this “The Short Sixties”.  When everything was going crazy in America.  And, Granted, at this point in time for most of Middle America, the Revolution was being watched on the television and guarded against, but this is the age that conservative bemoaners wail against.  So I’m wondering — since when did it slide into the same mind frame as the 1950s?

Probably still not there for Representative Gingrey:

In a speech Monday on the House floor, Gingrey stressed his continued support for the Defense of Marriage Act — which defines marriage as only union between a man and a woman — and suggested that children need to be carefully taught about the traditional roles of their genders:

GINGREY: You know, maybe part of the problem is we need to go back into the schools at a very early age, maybe at the grade school level, and have a class for the young girls and have a class for the young boys and say, you know, this is what’s important.This is what a father does that is maybe a little different, maybe a little bit better than the talents that a mom has in a certain area. And the same thing for the young girls, that, you know, this is what a mom does, and this is what is important from the standpoint of that union which we call marriage.”

Who’ll be guarding against 60s re-revisionism in much the same way, oh, we have to battle Reagan Revisionism.

Actually, interestingly I watched clips of the new “Fall TV lineup”.  There was a sitcom set in “1991”, using Vanilla Ice as a backdrop to set a very specific time frame.  It’s promoted as “A Time before Internet Porn”, (and a bunch of jokes that seem to set the boy in the mold of the sitcom character of the era — Bud Bundy) and — whether this is the new “80s Show” of tedium short lived contrivance or the new “70s Show” of retro – Happy Deals nostalgia cycling, I guess it is a new cycle…

(Never mind the harsh realities of the time period of that 70s Show)… (I think this is the video I want?  Close enough for now.)

… which, on tv would have started when the earliest tv stars of the late 1940s and early 1950s brought back 1930s Vaudeville!  For the nostalgic yearnings back to the halycon carefree years of the 1930s…

the point three nine percent

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

I had the over / under for Richard Heo’s vote percentage in yesterday’s election at point three percent.  It appears to round up to point four percent.  (point three nine percent.)  Regretably, it is a bit difficult to figure out where Richard Heo’s strong holds are — where he topped into the point five range — though it appears Brookline isn’t Richard Heos Country.

In Brookline, Markey received 10,447 votes, or about 82 percent of the total. His opponent, Republican Gabriel Gomez, received 2,254 votes in Brookline, or 18 percent of the votes. Third party candidate Richard Heos, of the Twelve Visions Party, received 15 votes in Brookline.

His voting percentage is better in Braintree.

In unofficial results from Braintree Town Clerk Joseph Powers’ office, Gomez tallied 4,372 votes in Braintree, followed by Democratic U.S. Rep. Edward Markey with 3,186 and Richard Heos of the Twelve Visions Party with 21.

What explains this?  Anyone?

Republican Gabriel Gomez has been shoe-horning a long game, as suggested by Republican statements that he ought run for the full term in 2014.  In some sense, he declares victory in terms of marching onward.  How’d Richard Heos do with his stated goal?

This is a way to help society by being on the ballot,” Heos said. “But we’re getting the party on the ballot so people will see the party exists.”

Well…

Is That Guy For Real?
The Twelve Visions Party is a piece of work.

For a variety of reasons I am less than impressed with either of the two parties right now, but at least they are capable of spelling and proper grammar. Their web sites are, well now that I think about it, we’ll say marginally more intelligible.
I Was all ‘What the hell is that? I’d better look that up when I get home” and promptly forgot about it until now.

A few more people know the party exists than did before.

There are no new comments on his twitter feed.  We’ll just have to amuse ourselves with his old tweets.

ALL OPTIONS ARE ON THE TABLE… THE FUTURE IS NOW… WE STRESS THE STRESSORS….
HEOS FOR HUMANS… SWEET PERFUME AND LEATHER JACKETS… EVERYDAY PEOPLE….
VOTE HEOS;HE`S ALL FOR HIMSELF… SOCRATES AND BRAVEHEART REVENGED… UNDERTAKERS DISAPPOINTED….
HUMANS FOR HEOS,,, BIG MEDIA DECEIVES PUBLIC REPEATEDLY… NOW ATTEMPTING TO COVER-UP….
HUMANS FOR HEOS CAMPAIGN CATCHING FIRE… HEALTH,WEALTH AND FINALLY PEACE….
POND SCUM…HE THAT SMELT IT PROBABLY DEALT IT….
THANK SEN. DAN QUAYLE for the PATRIOT Missile System and pond scum for the internet….
HUMANS FOR HEOS CAMPAIGN GROWS STRONGER… OPPONENTS NERVOUS….

Sigh.  And so what’s next for this weed in the political process?  Hm.  They’ve proven they can gather signatures in low signature threshold states, and match the signatures in an election, so I guess they’ll be up and at ’em at a coming election to… revenge Socrates and Bravehart.

schoolhouse rock should’ve done a song on how bills don’t becomes laws

Tuesday, June 25th, 2013

Pondering last week’s House Farm bill failure.  The Center Cannot Hold, as famed Frustrated  Centrist YB Yeats put it.  And here’s what we get.

Republicans were quick to blame Democrats for the farm bill’s failure, with multiple senior aides saying that Democrats had promised to deliver at least 40 votes to get the measure over the line. Democrats didn’t dispute that there was an initial deal, but the top Democrat on the Agriculture Committee warned before the vote that many saw the Southerland amendment as a deal-breaker.
Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) echoed the sentiment later, rather pointedly casting aspersions on Boehner’s ability to manage his fractious, tea party-divided caucus.
“It’s always interesting to me when people blame other people for their own failures,” Pelosi said. “It’s silly, it’s sad, it’s juvenile, it’s unprofessional, it’s amateur hour.”
The measure failed 195 to 234, with 62 Republicans voting against it. Pelosi noted that nearly all of the GOP opponents — 58 of them — voted for Southerland’s amendment.
“I just can’t get over the fact that 58 republicans voted for an amendment that would sink the bill,” Pelosi said. “It’s a stunning thing. Why would you give people an amendment that’s going to kill your bill, and then go blame it on somebody else?”

Because.

House GOP leadership aides dismissed the idea that having 62 members of their own conference vote against the bill was significant, telling reporters Republican votes were exactly as expected.
“The Democrats told us clearly right before the vote that they knew that the Southerland amendment was going to pass, and they had decided at the last minute that they were going to pull their support,” a spokesman for House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.), told reporters. “This was a complete collapse of professionalism and maturity on the Democratic Party’s part.”

Because.

Supposedly we have a poisoning of the well here, but they’

Actually, as always, it is interesting to note the Democrats coming on board and the Republicans ditching the board.

Hm.  It failed 234 to 195.  And looking over the usual suspects of the most conservative Democrats lodged in Republican districts (yes, a lot fewer than after the 2010 debacle) — urm… mixed in terms of willingness to jump the ship on Southerland.  I note, Oregonians, Kurt Schraeder was on board.  On the Republican side, I suppose we’re lodged back in the “acutally two parties” land — I think the map shows a large contingency in the South, but…

The other roll call of note.  Feel free to find the four Republican splintering toward the logical course, not poisoning the bill.

And the other spot we’re a “Center” is going to “hold” or “fall apart”… immigration… stare at the map of the Senators who voted aye and nay for the mess of a bill that — urm… 15 ayes versus 27 nos for the Republicans.  No, I don’t see how this would placate the Boehner’s caucus split — who, I guess, wants this to pass while letting as many Republicans off the hook in opposing it as he can allow.  (Also.  Which side can you claim is the Republican Establishment on the issue?)

 

passing a mass of contradictions in Bill Form.

Monday, June 24th, 2013

There is a terribly fascinating, and in a way scary in the “how the legislative sausage is made” manner, feature in the New Yorker — the one probably on your newstands right now.  Ryan Lizza’s “Getting to Maybe” — on the “Gang of 8″ ‘s attempted threading of an immigration bill.  Their goal: 70 votes for immigration, enough to preasure a House of Representatives into taking it up and passing it.

The working remind me of nothing so less as the Compromise of 1850 — threading the needle of contradictory political demands and at sometimes immoral and evil compromises.  That compromise had to do with slavery, naturally.

I have no particular interest in caring about this bill’s defeat or passage.

On the cast of characters, the “Down With Tyranny” blog pegs John McCain as the most irksome character of this troupe.  But I’m not so sure.   I think Lindsey Graham becomes your fascinating character of groanworthiness.  Two points — he celebrates the Process of how the Interests keep feeding at the Process.

As for high techs, several staffers involved with the bill started to notice that every time the Gang staisfied the industry its lobbyists returned with new demands.  “They keep coming back fo rmore,” Graham told me.  But he didn’t mean it in a bad way.  “This is America.  I don’t know how you say that in Latin.  That should be on some building somewhere: You have the right to come back for more when you don’t get what you want.  The country where you can ask for almost anything!”

And then we have how he is dealing with his political problem — of being cast as something less than a Conservative and facing up to a wrathful potential primary challenge in South Carolina.  Why — by amping up some attacks on  Obama on Everything Else!

Back in South Carolina, where President Obama and his policies are intsensely unpopular, Graham compensates for his pro-immigration stance by crucifying Obama on most other issues.  He speaks a great deal about a “coverup” by people at the White House over the terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya, last September that killed the US Ambassador and three other American officials.  “I think they politcally manipulated the evidence to tell a political story rather than the truth right before the election,” Graham told me.  “But, having said that, let’s do immigration.”

It does strike me as a tad transparent.  Given his celebration of the process of private interest digging in.

I think this article says that Graham stating that 80 percent of his primary voters will be getting their news from… Fox.  And here’s something a little interesting.  Not that it’s news per se, but Limbaugh seems to give away the score.

Fox News has notably changed its tone since the election.  A Democratic policy staffer who worked on the issue in 2007 and has helped write the current bill said, “NumberUSA and FAIR” — two grups that want to dramatically limit immigration — “managed to convince Fox News back then to be their twenty-four hour news channel of the anti-immigrant point of view.  Fox has now totally bought in to the idea that we just need to figure something out.”  Rush Limbaugh, who fiercely opposed the bill, has come to sound resigned.  “I don’t know if there’s any stopping this,” he said on January 28th, the day the Gang held the press conference announcing its framework for the legislation.  “It’s up to me and Fox News, and I don’t think Fox News is that interested in this.”

“Up to me and Fox News”.

Skip to another figure in this parade of Senators.  Marco Rubio.  And… Facebook has his back.  And will use an issue that he probably doesn’t much concern himself with to sell, evidentally before going back to Graham with an another request.

Rubio supported the Hatch amendment, and the tech community showed its gratitude. FWD.us, the political group backed by Faebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, defended Rubio from conservative attacks by buying ads on talk radio.  The spots didn’t mention H-1B visas, but they assured listeners that Rubio’s plan was tough.  It would “deport any illegal immigrant guilty of a serious crime.  For the rest, no amnesty, period.”

Classic.  There is some good news in this story…

The Democrats in the Gang are so gratfeul to Rubio for this effort that their praise of him borders on the obsequious.  “He has been so invalubale, “Durbin told me.  “He’s willing to go on the most conservative talk shows, television and radio, Rush Limbaugh and the rest.  They respect him, they like him, they think he has a future in the Party.”  And he added, “”He brings us the names of some of these conservative people I’ve never heard of who everybody in their caucus knows.”  One of them Mark Levin, a conservative radio host based in new York, who reaches more than seven million listeners a week and recently compared the Gang of Eight to a “politburo.”  “I couldn’t pick him out of a lineup,” Durbin said.  “Who is Mark Levin?”

That’s rather refreshing that the Democrats don’t know who the hell Mark Levin is.

tuesday’s election in massachusetts, and suckered into third party loopyland once again.

Sunday, June 23rd, 2013

Might as well note that there is a special election on Tuesday, to fill out the service of now Secretary of State John Kerry for US Senator of the great (an historically nationally politically maligned) state of Massachusetts.

The Democrat is expected to win, reasonably comfortably.  He’s not lighting anything of fire, but he’s not dragging himself down ala Martha Coakley, and the Republican hasn’t the pick-up truck driving downhome appeal of Scott Brown.

But then there is the third candidate.

Richard Heos, a Woburn resident representing the Twelve Visions Party.

The Twelve Visions Party?

However, Heos could not encapsulate his campaign or party’s platform in a nutshell, citing that it was more than 100 pages long, but he said that if elected he would strive to end all welfare entitlements and restrictions on immigration.

Well, you can’t blast him for speaking in sound-bytes, unless it is “Go read my 100 page document”.

Except you can blame him, or his party at least, for doing that bullet-point presentation thing — you know — basing things on Twelve Visions.

Richard never sends me emails, and the other candidates don’t seem to acknowledge him, so I will say the 12 visions his party is based on all seem nice, even the one with a typographical error in it.

Hm.

I was also looking for info on the Twelve Visions Party. I found a little, but not much. Its goals look identical to the Libertarian Party’s, but the rhetoric has more of a New Age flavor. What policy differences does the TVP have with libertarians?

We have a game plan…Prime Law Amendment and a Protection only government…Stay tuned,sports

Does your game plan include answering questions from people who want to learn more about you?

BURN.  And… more burn…

Your outreach stinks. Your national party’s site has been down for at least a week. Your state party site has misspellings, horrible graphical design, and is drowning in comment spam. Your Senate campaign has no web site at all.
Your platform is indistinguishable from the Libertarian Paty’s. Your rhetoric is flowery, overblown, and utopian. You might think it’s an accurate portrayal of what you can achieve, but to a new reader, it comes across as implausible new-age tripe.
Given your platform’s similarity to the Libertarian Party’s, I had to wonder “what’s the point? Why not just join the LP?” The answer seems to be that you’re the political arm of a cultish, money-making scheme by Mark Hamilton. Joining the LP would not advance his cause of selling Neothink paraphernalia to loyal followers, and so he started his own party.
In many ways, you remind me of the Natural Law Party, which was the political arm of the Transcendental Meditation cult.
Building a political party is hard work. You guys don’t seem to have what it takes.

That “overflowing with spam” comment is about what I make of the website.  But for the life of me, I don’t know how this is sucking money from and to anyone anywhere.

The Month of March starts off with a blast! In Anticipation of Prime Law Day March 23th TVP extends it’s Campaign for Senate in neighboring cities. Signatures for Political designation Status is a priority.

Prime Law Day.

TVP is fundraising for the month of March, The TVP political campaign continues through the month of March collecting signatures for political designation. Richard Heos and the Twelve Visions Party will be leading the way on the road to the White House.

Huh?

The TVP is in high expectations of Prime Law Day March 23rd, and the 2013 Senate Race. Signatures are being gathered and the TVP plans to enter the 2013 Senate race valiantly. Expect Wealth, Health, and peace as an out come to The Twelve Visions Party Victory!

Oh.  Wait.  This explains it

The NeoThink Movement.

No.  I’ll stick to paleo-thinking, thank you very much.

With the TVP National Platform, Make All the People Rich, Including the Poor, I announce the birth of the Twelve Visions Party.  The Prime Law of Protection and The Protection-Only Budget are the two pillars that hold up this new party.  They manifest the original beauty behind the two old parties without the lies, tricks, and power-plays that destroyed those beautiful original intentions.

So.  How much of the vote will Richard Heos get?  I put the over / under at… oh… point 3 percent?

In other news of various oddball political creatures (though… this one — a perenial Seattle based candidate has a more discernable misison):  Good Space Guy answers your questions.

international elections

Thursday, June 20th, 2013

So.  Now that the Iranians have elected the “moderate” of the Cleric-approved candidates…

… either showing a difference between this moderate and the reformer who supposedly had an election stolen and brought on the Green Revolution of Protests– that one is not considered a threat to the ruling Clerical oligarchy and the other became such –, or showing that Ahmajenidad won after all…

Or… something going on in internal Iranian politics that is worth a deep Kremlinogolical study.  He has a court summons.  Interesting.

One of those three.

What’s the next international election whose dynamics are not wholly translatable and understandable to my “idiosyncratic and eccentric” American vantage point?  Well, take a look at the  Mayor of Moscow.

Well, it’s full of eccentric personalities, after we get past the “United Russia” Putin-head, and assorted Communist Party and controlled opposition figures.  Without looking too far into him, I will just assume that this guy is the equivalent of our Vampire Candidate.  Thought maybe I’m not giving him enough credit and he has some “Pussy Riot” political dissident qualities with him:

Thrash metal musician and member of the nationalist opposition; ran unsuccessfully for mayor of the Khimki and Zhukovsky districts of Moscow Oblast in 2012 and 2013.

Hm…