This other, quadrennial "silly season" that we charitably refer to as a general election cycle has come with its share of disappointments. It's been a sort of Festivus in which we've been raining blows on each others' heads by blocking on Twitter and unfriending each other on Facebook at the first sign of partisan non-compliance and waging flame wars to no effect. We've been airing our grievances with others not of like mind and letting them know whether they wish to hear it or not. To not be so engaged and passionate is tantamount to turning in your political wonk membership card. Suddenly, graduation parties and family BBQs involving red hot coals and sharp implements aren't as safe as they once seemed.
And I am no different. There's nothing wrong about showing concern and political passion when one perceives our interests are being threatened by those who would have us believe otherwise, to vehemently reject the polymer-based smiles and usual campaign promises by those who accept money from Big Business and Wall St banks (and, yes, Hillary, I'm looking right at you). After all, if the streets of Paris can be clogged with hundreds of thousands of people when austerity is threatened, then the least we can do for our own political process is to heave our distended rear ends off our Laz-E-Boys and shake our fists at our laptops (baby steps, baby steps).
And I'm not going to rail on about Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump because I never had any illusions about either of them. Both of them have so many unpleasant things in common it's no wonder the two of them are neck-and-neck in virtually every poll taken over the last couple of weeks. This is why Bernie Sanders has never faltered in his lead over Trump- He doesn't remind people of the right wing loudmouth bully or of Wall Street.
No, this is about the disappointments to which we've been subjected elsewhere within the Democratic establishment. Over the last several months, many Democratic and liberal stalwarts whom we've admired over the years have been making some troubling statements, taken some dodgy stands and making some inexplicable endorsements.
Again, this is not about the Usual Suspects, the fish in the barrel. I never had the slightest illusions about Trump, the right wing media that has enabled him or Goldwater Girl Hillary Clinton or even DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz (who's in for the fight of her life against Tim Canova in FL-23). My airing of grievances is aimed toward those I'd come to trust and even admire over the years.
Yes, I Sold Out to Big Banks and That's Made Me a Better Liberal
My problem with Barney Frank is manifold. While I never quite lived in his district, sometimes in years past I felt as if he might have been. His decades of dedication to progressive causes, gay rights and the standard of living of people in Massachusetts is undeniable. It kind of made him a political Dutch Uncle to all of us. It was a sad day when gerrymandering would've given him a new constituency unfamiliar with him, forcing his retirement.
Then, after retiring from Congress, last June Frank did the unthinkable: He joined the board of a Wall Street bank. When the cries of dismay rose to such a pitch they couldn't be ignored, Frank then penned last December an article for the ages, a breathtakingly arrogant piece for Politico that's actually entitled, Yes, I Took Bank Money. And It Made Me a Better Regulator.
In it, Frank not only justified taking a highly lucrative position with Signature Bank's Board of Directors, he even had the effrontery to equate the dismay meeting this career move with a "liberal purity test." In other words, I'm not the only one who's sold out and you should get on board because there are no honest men any more and that we should end our Diogenean search for one.
Granted, Frank's career in public service was over and he had every right to take a job making him a lot of pelf. But considering his predominant focus as a Congressman and as one of the co-authors of the watered-down Dodd-Frank, the optics looked bad. Frank's move to Wall Street had just highlighted the sleazy collusion and well-oiled revolving door between Wall Street banks and its so-called regulators. It inevitably made those of us who still subscribe to "purity tests" how well he got to know these banksters while allegedly regulating them.
Frank's ridiculous, self defensive stance that accepting succor from Wall St making him a better regulator is like saying, "Taking countless men between my legs and getting infected with STDs has made me a better nun." But Frank couldn't stop there. His waspishness at criticism of his career move aside, he also, typical of the Wall St wing of the Democratic Party, decided to become a Hillary backer. Not only that, he's been openly hostile to the only candidate who's been honestly critical of Wall St and refusing its money: Bernie Sanders.
It didn't help his cause any when Debbie Wasserman Schultz named him to one of the three committees that will essentially govern the entire National Convention in Philadelphia in July. This is her right but again, Democrats have shown they are as willfully blind to bad optics as the Republicans, which is the first sign of arrogant politicians holding the voice of the people in complete contempt. In placing Clinton partisans Frank and Dannel Malloy to the committees, it gave the unmistakable perception that Schultz was stacking the deck against Sanders just as Roberta Lange had in Las Vegas several weeks ago.
A Fifth Column Pogrom
The hostility shown to Sanders by the likes of Wasserman Schultz, Frank and other Jews also touches upon an inexplicable antisemitic backlash against the Vermont Senator. This comes from the Democratic establishment, this new Tammany Hall that's been rearing its ugly head. The sharpest criticism against Sanders and the most naked collusion has been coming from Wall Street-backed Jews such as Schultz and Frank. An optimist would see that the Democrats aren't as religiously partisan as Republicans but pessimists would see it differently. As American Jews historically have voted Democratic and liberal, it's troubling to see so many of Sanders' fellow Jews piling on him publicly and privately because he won't play ball with Wall Street.
Another big disappointment has been Barbara Boxer, who chose to end her career is in a sad, sloppy, vicious way by giving the finger to Sanders backers in Nevada a few weeks ago. One could excuse her Hillary partisanship by saying that Boxer's daughter married Clinton's brother but that's hardly a reason to back one candidate or another for President. Considering that Boxer's not running for reelection this fall, one can breathe a sigh of relief at her impending retirement while knowing that, at the end of it all, she was no more progressive than her counterpart Dianne Feinstein (who had to use Google to look up Clinton's accomplishments during her brief time in the Senate. Unsurprisingly and undeterred by her ignorance, Feinstein sided with her fellow establishment Jews and endorsed Clinton over Sanders).
And perhaps the biggest disappointment of all was Rachel Maddow, an unabashed Hillary backer and Bernie basher. In a recent segment on the increasingly disappointing MSNBC, Maddow took the Sanders campaign to task for a letter written to the DNC by its legal team demanding that Frank and Malloy be tossed from the committees. What Maddow chose to elide over were the reasons why the Sanders campaign feels they weren't getting a fair shake. "Collusion, Wasserman Schultz? What is this collusion of which you speak, stranger?" Maddow might as well ask.
As with Trump acting as both a magnet and lightning rod for the racists, xenophobes, homophobes and misogynist holdovers still left in this country, Hillary Clinton has also been catnip for every corrupt, machine Democrat between the Beltway and Wall Street. Watching the endorsements come out for her during her campaign is like putting on the goggles and seeing the aliens among us for the first time. And a paranoid liberal by necessity has to look askance at what few remaining stalwarts remain to us, fearful that Alan Grayson and Elizabeth Warren have been pulling our legs the whole time.
Behold your new Democratic Party, people. This is what they really think of you and how they've always thought of you.
In case you don't recognize her through the plastic surgery, Onassis sunglasses and the mob wife blouse, this is Sen. Barbara Boxer at the Nevada "Democratic" convention two Saturdays ago flipping off Bernie Sanders supporters. This is the same woman who claimed she was "fearing for (her) life" and was getting threats from Bernie bros.
Gee, she doesn't look all that scared to me. She must have been putting on a really brave front, that poor little lady
One is at a loss to conceive what possible reason Boxer would've had to be at the Nevada convention when her home state is in California. That is, until one digs and discovers that Boxer's daughter Nicole is married to Hillary Clinton's brother, Tony. Ah, family. It was central to the life of Il Cosa Nostra so why shouldn't it be to machine Democrats?
Hell, the political relationships in this nest of vipers are so incestuous that when Boxer broke the news she wasn't running for reelection, she did it through her grandson and Hillary's nephew Zach instead of the mainstream media. Nothing like keeping it in the family, eh?
And lest you think this is an isolated incident, keep in mind this is how machine Democrats such as Boxer, the Clintons and Barack Obama think of the more progressive and liberal wing of the Democrat voter base. Liberals smiled and turned the other cheek when six years ago Obama sniped at critical liberals at a $30,000 fundraiser held in the Connecticut gated mansion of a guy named Rich Richman. Not long after that, Obama sent his press secretary Bob Gibbs out to spew more vitriol at the "professional left." It's notable that liberals, many of whom being Occupy veterans, have suffered more withering criticism from the Obama administration than the Teabaggers ever had.
Hillary's ghosts are coming home to roost as liberals with long memories are dredging up speeches in which she called African American youth "super predators" while pimping for her husband's 1994 crime bill that saw the beginning of the rise of the private prison industry, a ruinous war on drugs and the United States being the most jail happy nation on earth.
As he was eight years ago during his wife's first failed presidential run, Bill Clinton is still a snarling, factually-challenged right winger, only this time around, he's beginning to resemble a sloppy gone-to-seed WWE wrestler during a trash talking. His conduct last month to critics of his crime bill showed just how willfully misinformed and racist he truly always was and still is, which you would think would wake up the droves of black voters who are still clumping around Hillary as if she was Eleanor Roosevelt.
They didn't call him "Slick Willie" for nothing. If nothing else, the 42nd president knew how to run a campaign and he resorted to every dirty trick in the book as if his runs were orchestrated by none other than Karl Rove and Lee Atwater, The House of Cards couple silenced virtually every woman who came out to say they'd been raped or harassed by Bill because in national politics even basic human dignity is trumped by political primacy.
There's always been something despicable and rotten about the Democratic party going back to the early 19th century when they were entrenched in the south and actually tore this nation in two over the right to own slaves. Then in 1789, they founded what would be Tammany Hall in New York City, the legendarily corrupt political machine that cynically courted both Irish and African Americans to stuff ballot boxes. In Tammany's heyday, patronage, jobs and career advancement were bought and sold like any other commodity on the same Wall Street that very thickly butters the Clinton bread. In Tammany-era Manhattan, no one, from the Mayor to the meanest beat cop, got a job unless the Tammany bosses said it would be so. If anyone got out of line, they'd use their attack dogs known as "ward heelers", those enforcers at the lowest rung of the political ladder.
Tammany's been dead for nearly a half a century but the Democratic Party's tactics have only gotten more vicious yet more sophisticated. Plus, Tammany's influence was restricted to Manhattan (then, after consolidation in 1895, Brooklyn and its much coveted docks that Manhattan lacked). Now, instead of actual assassination of crusading politicians, activists and journalists, the new Democratic Party gets even by character assassination on social media. And their reach is seemingly limitless.
Now, instead of seeing stuffed ballot boxes, we're seeing the exact opposite but all to the same ends. We're seeing voter rolls purged, party affiliations mysteriously changed (which, typical of the corrupt and utterly worthless MSM, are spinning as tens of thousands of deliberate but inexplicable acts), legitimate Bernie delegates rejected (most infamously in Nevada), and easily hacked voting machines being used in the very same states in which Hillary's done the best. And then there's the super delegate system that's transparent only in its corruption, a Plan B that had been put in place by party insiders and corporate lobbyists and enacted before a single vote had been cast in the Iowa caucus.
And now, the fix is in in California, in which voters are having mailed to their homes mailers that are generated and disseminated through official channels giving them erroneous and incomplete information, which has prompted a lawsuit by two civil rights attorneys. (Note: If you're in California and are politically unaffiliated yet wish to vote for Bernie Sanders in the June 7th primary, you need to get a crossover ballot, which the mailers from the CA Secretary of State deliberately and conveniently left out).
But they never counted on Sanders dogging Blue Dog Hilary's every step and never imagined the old man would win 21 states by this time. They thought, at most, Hillary would face a stiff challenge from another machine Democrat or failing that, Donald Trump, the Republican leader since he announced his candidacy nearly a year ago. Bernie's populist candidacy, with tens of millions of voices amplifying his message, merely brings the Clinton corruption into greater relief than it would if it had victimized a lesser machine Democrat.
And now we're seeing precisely the same exact tactics you would expect of Republican operators and even Teabagger thugs who lie, slander and libel their opponents when they face the slightest opposition. Machine Democrats like Boxer, the Clintons, Wasserman Schultz and others snarl at the last of the real liberals who cry foul at their obvious corruption with the sloppiness of a junk yard dog with rabies. And I refer you again to the lead image of Barb Boxer flipping off Bernie supporters because that is the perfect image of the establishment Democrats' attitude toward those who are vainly trying to keep them honest.
Yes, we should compare the Clinton Machine to old Tammany Hall because, while the tactics are more high tech and only marginally less violent, the motivations and viciousness remain in full force.
(Addendum: Constant reader and fellow New York native CC informs me the actual consolidation of Brooklyn with Manhattan, indeed, the consolidation of all five boroughs, took place in 1898, not 1895 as I had stated. This was the culmination of a two decades-long push to unify the five boroughs and some steps toward annexation and consolidation were made in 1895 and before. This, however, is my error and I own it.)
If you want a glimpse into the future, you don't have to imagine, as George Orwell once famously said, "a boot stamping on a human face, forever." In fact, one doesn't need to imagine anything. All one has to do is review the recent Nevada Democratic Convention and how shamelessly it conducted itself.
Granted, it's difficult to catalog the seemingly countless infractions and illegal moves that put the stupendously corrupt "Democratic" State Chairwoman Roberta Lange not only in complete control of the convention but also allowed her to run it with an iron fist that would've been envied by Stalin and Hitler. But let's start with some of the more egregious examples:
64 people who either had credentials to be Democratic delegates or had their credentials changed (including the usual SNAFU of having party affiliations changed from Democrat to Republican), were turned away, even after some of them provided proof they were who and what they said they were. Most of these people, surprise, surprise, were Bernie delegates.
A voice vote that clearly signaled "Nay" was blithely ignored by Lange and she testily banged her gavel and adjourned the entire convention as she'd decided the Ayes had it.
After Bernie Sanders won the county conventions, the Nevada "Democratic" Party hastily rigged the game to favor Clinton and awarded her most of the delegates.
Lange moved to change the party rules while Bernie delegates were still waiting in line to register while Clinton delegates, for some maddeningly elusive reason, showed up earlier. This would ensure Sanders delegates couldn't raise their voices, ensuring the new rules clearly favoring Clinton wouldn't even be challenged.
The usual assortment of alleged thuggery on the part of Sanders supporters that resulted in not a single person getting thrown out of the convention hall by the massive law enforcement presence.
People, there is nothing democratic about the Democratic Party on either a state or national level. We know that Hillary is shamelessly hitting the phone banks and sucking up to Bush donors for more cash. We know the Democratic convention in Philadelphia this year will be backed and financed by right wing corporations and lobbyists (Allowing corporate payola to fund the convention was previously forbidden until Wasserman Schultz, who never met a CEO she didn't love, quietly changed that rule way back last October).
One is tempted to borrow a tactic from the Republicans during the Bush years and refer to the Democratic Party as the Democrat Party because, especially after Nevada, there's nothing even remotely democratic about the Democratic Party.
We saw much of the same thing in Boston 12 years ago when in advance of the Democratic convention, snipers were posted on roofs and protesters were shunted to "Freedom cages"several blocks away from the front entrance of the Fleet Center so John Kerry, that year's sacrificial lamb, and the delegates wouldn't have to hear others exercising their First Amendment rights.
And heaven forbid Sanders supporters rightly call "Foul" on social media or elsewhere. They will be swiftly shouted down by brand new accounts with almost no followers by paid Hillary trolls and undeclared right wing zealots sneering about them whining and nonexistent violence.
The shamelessly corrupt and collusive Nevada convention was just a pinprick of what we'll see in the cradle of liberty and democracy this July.
I've been called a lot of things in my life but Saint Valentine was never one of them.
A few weeks ago, my source on Twitter gave me the email address for a girl named Fiona in Idaho (aka "The Other Maine"). She was the one who'd broken off her engagement with Joe "Dave" Chadwick, the brain-damaged Iraq War vet whose insanity and bizarre behavior was so pronounced even from 6000 miles away, she'd decided to break off the engagement.
Assuming, wrongly as it turned out, this girl could be reasoned with, I sent her an email, summarizing what her ex had been putting me through since June of last year and asking for some context behind their breakup. Before you crinkle your eyebrows and ask me why in the world I would want to do such a thing, let me explain that we writers (and political bloggers, if we're worth our weight in Cheetos) will go to extraordinary lengths in the name of research. Remember, I'm writing a thriller in the near future featuring the Chadwick twins. No, I wasn't kidding about that.
I was pretty low key, wasn't writing in all caps and doing the cybernetic equivalent of screaming. I had merely synopsized what her old flame had been putting my fiancee and me through and asked for context regarding their breakup. Remember, at this juncture, I thought I was writing to someone who was actually sane.
Boy, was I wrong.
It turns out this right wing nut bag named Fiona once worked as a volunteer for Ted "BusTED" Cruz and Mitt Romney. A couple of weeks went by and, as I expected, she never wrote back to me and there I let the matter drop.
Then I got a series of DMs from my friend in Utah who said Fiona's head exploded when she read my email and called up "Dave" Chadwick for the first time in 12 years. Before anyone knew what had happened, she went to Weber County, Utah, they got re-engaged and now Chapped Dick's moving his semen-stained Goodwill furniture into a storage unit in Farr West along with his twin "Danny" (who's moving to Los Angeles this Wednesday, obviously to continue ducking his child support obligations to his daughter).
Yeah, this is what Fiona thought would be a good bet with whom to spend the rest of her life. They'll make the kind of couple you just know you'll be seeing in a few months on the 5 o'clock news or reading about on Raw Story in the "Husband Shoots Wife Then Turns Gun on Himself" files. This is an overexposed photo I harvested from Chapped Dick's old blog, looking very much like the mouthless creations he'd essentially stolen from the Danish Lego corporation or an extra from some hillbilly version of a video of ZZ Top's "Sharp Dressed Man".
And that leads me to the title of this post, the last one I will ever write about Joseph David Chadwick, the poor man's Mike Nelson.
Among the bombshell revelations made to me of late by my Man in Utah was the incredible news that Chadwick actually got himself a literary agent and a publishing deal that's reportedly worth about six figures. I have no idea who this Israeli literary agent Ariel Levin is as she has no internet presence nor can I find any reference online to this Israeli publisher who put him in touch with this agent.
In all fairness to Chadwick, the publishing business is gradually getting to the point in which only insiders can realistically hope for a publishing contract. The only other way to cut in line, it seems, is to have your work referred by someone who has an "in" and this is exactly how Chadwick slimed his way through the back door. Apparently, Israel also uses in-house agents and, seeing something in his mouthless creations worth cultivating, they wanted to kick back 15% to their buddy literary agent.
Not only that, but this contract necessarily involves a relocation to Tel Aviv because they're offering him a staff job. Gee, I wonder how long it took for Chadwick to throw Granny from the train once he got wind of this deal from this Levin character? My guess: About a nanosecond, if that. Now poor Granny won't have anyone to do her lawn since Danny Boy will also be heading for greener pastures so he can better dodge his child support obligations.
Yes, the scum of the earth is suddenly living a life of all aces and he partially has me to thank.
Because if I hadn't written that email to his ex Fiona weeks ago, she never would've called him and he would've gone off to Israel alone so he could draw cartoons for a terrorist rogue nation that apparently is suffering a dearth of bad, derivative cartoons. So where's my thanks?
There will be none forthcoming. Even though Chapped Dick cleaned his trailer, got rid of the body odor and even threw away all the pictures lining his laptop monitor of WWE wrestler Becky Lynch (Boy, that must've hurt because let's just say Pal Joey didn't need tape or glue to get them to stick to the edge of his monitor). He's got an agent, he's got a publisher and he's engaged to a fellow right wing, Palestine-hating moron. And they're now on their way to Israel, after a stopover in Idaho, which, for evolutionary dropouts like Joe and Fiona, is like floating up to the mother ship.
Now, ordinarily, I wouldn't begrudge another their success. While I can't say I'm overjoyed to see others getting a literary agent before me, it's not as if writers are actually in competition with each other. True, we're all going for a thimbleful or two of the rapidly shrinking advance pool that seems to fill the in-ground pools of right wing morons and hacks who largely don't write their own books. But we're not really in competition with each other.
But when a stinking (literally, stinking, from what others say about him), right wing stalker, jailbird and cultural hack like Chadwick gets an agent and a contract while I'm still getting boilerplate from flunkies... Well, that's proof positive that God is dead and rotting in heaven. And this is the forensic proof.
And apparently the future Mrs. Chadwick is still spitting nails at me, much moreso than Chadwick himself. Apparently, she resents the fact that I told the truth about her man and that the truth is embarrassing in the extreme.
Plus, one has to wonder about the suspicious timing of Fiona's voluntary reinsertion into the semen-flecked world of Joe Chadwick at pretty much the exact moment he had a six figure contract waved under his nose by some Israeli publisher. Do the words Gravy and Train ring a bell? How about Gold and Digger?
So, this is just to let Pal Joey know he's still in my thoughts and that sometime in the near future, he'll be further immortalized along with his semi-vestigial twin John when I finish my thriller starring the Brothers Chadwick. I don't expect the stalking to cease and if I start getting a shitload of hits from Israel, I'll know exactly where they're coming from and I'll let his employers know what he's doing when he should be churning out inferior cartoons for them on the company dime.
So, the least deserving person I know is now blessed with love and is living a (literally) cleaner life thanks to the efforts of yours truly. He and Fiona deserve each other and they can continue spitting venom at Palestine across the west bank after they trade one worthless, arid desert for another. Maybe in lieu of a mirror, they can fornicate under a huge poster of the baleful, well-fed face of Bibi Netanyahu on the ceiling. Let your imagination run wild.
Still, a little appreciation would've been nice.
(By American Zen's Mike Flannigan, on loan from Ari Goldstein.)
I'm surprised no one of any note, influence or consequence has accused Senator Bernie Sanders of being old and in the way. If they ever do, then he should take that as a compliment and keep shuffling his way to Philadelphia.
I could be accused of simplistic, one dimensional thinking when I say this but it bears repeating in plain, unvarnished English: Bernie Sanders has exceeded the expectations of his own supporters, the DNC and especially Hillary Clinton's campaign. Without relying on corporate donations or those from any special interest groups, 527's, Super PACs or the like, the Vermont Senator has regularly outraised Hillary's reborn juggernaut and her countless corporate investors and bundlers. In other words, his campaign is entirely publicly financed.
If you count the regular delegates, you can see Sanders is keeping pace with Clinton, being just 321 delegates behind her, still putting him well within reach of the Democratic nomination. It's only when one looks at the collusive, ultra corrupt super delegate vote count when you see the true tale of the tape. Hillary's chances of getting the nomination would be very jeopardized if it weren't for so-called super delegates (of which her husband is one) made up largely of Blue Dog party insiders and corporate lobbyists that dog every Clinton campaign like Zig-Zags follow the Grateful Dead.
In other words, in order to have even a chance at winning, the Clinton campaign, true to form, has to rely on collusion from Debbie Wasserman Schultz's DNC, over $15 million in Wall Street money, crooked primaries and voter purges and lobbyists and specially interested entities pledging their super delegate votes to Hillary before the first primary or caucus had even been run. And despite this massive hamstringing, Bernie still keeps pace with her, especially after his win in Indiana, hanging on like grim death.
He has had to endure his own Deflategate-esque voter data base "scandal" that turned out to be pure bullshit. Despite her shadow-boxing with Wall Street, Clinton still took in by the end of last year over $21,000,000 in bribes from hedge funds, banks, insurance companies and other self-interested parties who plainly see in Hillary a much better bet in terms of investment dividends. She'd had her paid trolls take down Sanders Facebook walls by posting kiddie porn on them the night before the five state mid Atlantic primary last week and her lobbyist surrogates are writing hit pieces on Sanders and acting as ghost writers for big city mayors.
The Not So Silent Right Wing Majority
Hillary's surrogates on Twitter and elsewhere are becoming as desperate, scared and unhinged as the Bushbots over a decade ago when Junior was beating back the possibility of being a one termer like his wimpy Dad. They use the same tactics, the same twisted brand of "logic" previously peculiar only to right wing nut jobs and regard those providing them with facts about their crooked Goldwater Girl as "arrogant."
Suddenly, Bernie marching with Dr. King during the famous March on Washington is a bad thing as was his stand against segregation that got him arrested in Chicago. Hillary backers are so desperate to disparage the Vermont Senator they openly question with sneers on their faces why, if he's an Independent, he's running under the same Democratic banner as Hillary. These are the very same people who, up until this election, had no problem with Sanders running, and winning, as an Independent as a Senator as long as he caucused with the Democrats.
When I hear that, I hear, "How dare someone give our Blue Dog a workout?"
But Sanders running as a Democrat isn't mere triangulating, a vulnerable old politician's desperate attempt to run under a legitimate banner. Sanders speaks of a revolution, one that needs to germinate from within an astoundingly and shockingly corrupt Democratic Party that, as per Joe Overton, has moved so far to the right as to become indistinguishable from the Republican party of 40 years ago.
But when Sanders speaks of a revolution, Hillarybots snort and say that he's a dreamer who's unmoored from reality, they point accusingly to his proposal to raise taxes and resort to the tried-and-true Republican tactic of scaring people by claiming Bernie's out to get your money. (In point of fact, recognizing the middle class and poor are on life support, Sanders' tax hike would, as one should expect, most conspicuously affect the 1%).
And since when did dreaming of a better United States become a bigger evil than simply maintaining the status quo that Hillary so capably represents? And since when were such dreams not financed by tax increases? To name just a few large and basic examples, this is how we fund Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, public education and the Eisenhower Highway System that literally changed the face and history of America.
You May Say I'm a Dreamer. But I'm Not the Only One.
Hillarybots, taking the Queen Bee's cue, openly sneer to Bernie backers that dreaming is too hard and we should learn to be "pragmatic". If pragmatism in HillaryWorld means being unquestionably and obediently complacent about a ruinous status quo that always, always, always works for the enrichment of the 1%, then yes, we should be pragmatic and not waste time on silly dreams of a better world that will actually, you know, take some elbow grease. Because dreams aren't wishes or rights magically and automatically granted by a leprechaun or genie just out of a bottle. Dreams require hard work and sacrifice and are privileges that have to be earned. Hillarybots all too blithely forget this when contemptuously dismissing Sanders' plans and dreams. But the young haven't forgotten. And they're the ones most often rolling up their shirtsleeves.
It would be a legitimate question. should anyone have the nerve to ask it: How many of Bernie's Millennials would have still voted for him during this shambles of a primary and caucus season if he had decided to run as a Independent? The answer is almost surely, "Not as many." Hillarybots strenuously ignore the fact that the 20somethings and first-time voters coming out in droves for Bernie Sanders streaming into the Big Blue Tent could possibly represent the party's future. And, for unknown and unknowable reasons, that scares them out of their wits.
Perhaps, in their reptilian brains, Hillary backers are just smart enough to know that true revolutionaries (and not the mere self-aggrandizing banana republic kind) think well beyond their own lifetimes and are content with establishing the framework for a lasting and constructive revolution that will upset if not outright eradicate the cherished status quo of aging Hillary voters.
And depending on the shade of blue of your political stripe, Bernie Sanders is both all right and all wrong for the office for which he's running. If he has to return to the Senate, he should do so with his disheveled head held high regardless of who wins the presidency. Because everything worth achieving begins with a dream.
What Hillary wants to achieve will begin with a carefully calculated scheme, midwifed by focus groups and steering committees made up of the right wingers whose support she's even now seeking.
This is How Unconcerned Hillary Clinton is About Bernie
(Tip o' the tinfoil hat to faithful reader CC)
I guess we should expect some degree of propaganda not only during election years but one could argue that propaganda has been part and parcel to politics since the days of ancient Rome.
("At his last sex orgy, Paladius fornicated with a sheep instead of a boy. Is that who you want as Proconsul? Vote Severinus, a true pederast, this November!")
But astroturfing, as the phrase was coined by Nancy Pelosi years ago, has become a lucrative business and is now as much a part of politics as fellating Iowa corn dogs, pointing at people in crowds with a manic gleam in your eye and kissing germy, crying babies. As I'm sure you're all well aware, astroturfing is the act of putting out a message under the guise of grass roots organizing and activism while masking the true identity of the actual authors and financiers. And it has no place in politics any more than corporate payola. If we're going to be lied to, then by God, the American people deserve to see the jiggling puss of the person actually doing the lying!
Out of Atlanta this fine day comes the news from The Intercept's Lee Fang that the Clinton campaign has been caught astroturfing and putting out anti Bernie Sanders articles on social media and in Op Ed pages. Here's how Fang begins his column:
A few days before the Georgia primary, influential Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed published a column on CNN.com
praising Hillary Clinton and ripping her opponent, Bernie Sanders. Reed
attacked Sanders as being out of step with Democrats on gun policy, and
accused him of elevating a “one-issue platform” that ignores the plight
of the “single mother riding two buses to her second job.”
But emails released
from Reed’s office indicate that the column, which pilloried Sanders as
out of touch with the poor, was primarily written by a corporate
lobbyist, and was edited by Correct the Record, one of several
pro-Clinton Super PACs.
Fang then contacted the Mayor's Communications Director, who made it real easy for Fang to get to the truth by frankly admitting Mayor Reed, "provided verbal edits and feedback to Tharon, but other than that, no
one from my office or the mayor’s office wrote this op-ed."
And CNN, true to form with the lazy, corporate mainstream media, ran the article on its website without any fact-checking or confirming the true authorship of this hit piece on Bernie Sanders.
That's right. Clinton is paying corporate lobbyists to run smear pieces on Bernie Sanders while bleating like a stuck pig he's being too mean to her and having her propaganda proofed by one of her Super PACS.
Oh, but Bernie should drop out, her surrogates say, Bernie has no chance, Bernie's just playing the spoiler at this point, Bernie should tell his delegates to support Hillary and "unify" the party.
If Hillary really believed that line of bullshit, then she wouldn't be running attack pieces on Sanders and thinly disguising them as independent, non-biased journalism or op-ed pieces by elected officials. She also wouldn't be using the dubious services of her small army of wouldbe Karl Roves and Lee Atwaters.
And she wouldn't be resorting to these desperate, scummy tactics if she wasn't scared shitless of Bernie Sanders. If Hillary was as confident as she insists on presenting herself, she'd be using the psy ops division of her campaign to craft attack ads and fake op-ed pieces on Trump. But she can't concentrate on him just yet because she has to get past Bernie Sanders first.
And Bernie ain't budging.
No doubt, any Hillarybots reading this will, as always, find some way to spin, deny, ignore, whitewash or otherwise poo-poo this rather inconvenient little news item that will get no traction in the completely worthless mainstream media (Least of all CNN). But in the spirit of fairness, they have to ask themselves this one question:
If Sanders was so "out of touch" and unworthy a candidate, then why is Hillary Clinton resorting to these douchebag moves disguising the authorship and true provenance of the hit pieces she's sprinkling all over the internet? Why not be upfront and above board about it instead of hiding behind corporate lobbyists that are more plentiful in her campaign than K Street and the Federal Bureau of Prisons combined?
Why can't this fucking 1% warhawk run an honest campaign for once?
Because she's a Clinton.
Poor, poor Republicans. When their presidential field still looked like a party at the 19th hole at Augusta with an embittered hostess and a black waiter, they had a choice between someone who could make them richer and someone who could make them even richer. The latter, of course, is Donald Trump. And now that he has the field all to himself, Republicans are clutching their pearls and whatever passes for their testicles. And I do not feel sorry for them one Goddamned bit.
The Republican field was very diverse this year. You had a woman who laid off 30,000 people, you had the token black, hell, you even had two Cubans at the same time! You had your pick of the litter. You had Catholics, you had Baptists, you even had a guy with bad hair who prays to the Aqua Buddha! But, oh, no. Even with all that Republican diversity, you still couldn't get behind one guy who didn't powder his perpetually inflated neck wattles orange.
So, Trump's got the Big Red Tent all to himself and now you're whining about your lack of a choice and how he scares you like Ted Cruz scares his five year-old daughter Caroline. He brings out the racists like a fumigation brings out the roaches and termites and you fear that he will damage the Republican brand like Fat Man or Little Boy damaged Hiroshima and Nagasaki. With no one else in the field, a brokered convention is a pipe dream.
But really, if Trump has even a passing resemblance to the brand, he will make you rich one way or the other. And chances are he'll make you richer the old fashioned Republican way: Tax avoidance. After all, how do you think Trump became a billionaire? Well, it certainly helped when Mayors Rudy and Bloomberg gave Trump one break after another totaling $200,000,000 in unpaid taxes so he could continue erecting phallic-shaped structures with his name all over the place.
And he can and will do the same for you even though he doesn't owe you or any bank or corporation or lobbyist or special interest group or 527 or Super PAC a Goddamned thing. That's the great thing about having a billionaire for President- He can buy his way into the White House without worrying about the note being called in.
Trump will make you richer through tax avoidance just because he's a prick. You're welcome.
Don't worry. The Donald has your back. Don't think for a minute his plans for your portfolios and tax returns will ever include the screaming goobers who watch NASCAR and the WWE. Trump's entire campaign hasn't just been the rebirth of the Southern Strategy but the creation of the Northern, Midwestern and Western Strategies. And we all remember how well the Southern Strategy worked for those mouth breathers since Nixon, right? Wink, wink.
Yes, you'll get richer and your local country clubs will suddenly get whiter than John McCain's fat, pasty ass. And while it's true more Mexicans are leaving the United States than entering, President Trump will make sure that trend continues. Then he'll build a wall stretching from California to Texas to make sure they stay in and make the beaners pay for it.
So, what are you complaining about? He's even got a smoking hot trophy wife and it would be the first time in American history we'll know what the First Lady's tits will look like. His son Donald Trump, Jr. will be balefully skulking the halls of the Executive Mansion ensuring loyalty to his father. And look how well that turned out the last time that happened.
So, yeah. You got Trump and Romney or Sarah Palin or a flour sack with Ronald Reagan's face scrawled on it isn't riding over the horizon at the 11th hour to save the day. You wanted more tax breaks, you wanted a whiter America while having a browner servant class small enough to be controlled, you wanted Mexicans and Muslims banned from entering our pristine shores, well you got it.
What's the problem? It's not your kids that'll be going to fight the wars he'll start. Wars are for poors.
...spend it watching this video by former RT newswoman Abby Martin. If you loath Hillary Clinton as I already do, this will make you furious. If you love or admire her, this may actually help you change your mind about voting for her this November (if she gets the nomination). Martin deconstructs the Clinton Charisma with hard research and unalterable facts about their right wing "New Democrats" con job in the 90's, the faux charity Clinton Foundation (the biggest fraud of its kind since the Red Cross and The Wounded Warriors Project) and from whom they've vacuumed up millions in bribes and about how Clinton's tenure as Senator and Secretary of State was little if anything more than a massive pay-to-play scam benefiting some of the most ruinous corporations on the planet.
Of course, if you're a dyed-in-the-wool Hillarybot, you'll find some way to elide over this massive number of inconvenient truths. That would also be her bloodthirsty history as a warhawk, a closet racist, dozens if not hundreds of the corrupt, antidemocratic superdelegate network being made up of corporate and banking lobbyists who had already pledged their votes to Hillary before a single primary or caucus was run.
I respect Abby Martin because she has no political axe to grind. This is not a pro-Bernie video but a cautionary tale as to what happens to the old, the poor and the powerless when you elect a Clinton or an Obama to the Oval Office. After all, when you climb into bed time and again with scumbags like Kissinger, right wing dictators and oligarchs and multinational corporations like Chevron that hire paramilitary death squads, you'd have to be brain dead to think Hillary will have your back if you're not one of her ultra wealthy donors.
Assclowns of the Week #101: Electoral College Dropouts edition
Hi ho, neighborinos! It's been quite a while since Assclowns #100 came and went with nary a single comment. But never let it be said your porcine powerhouse does this strictly for the hookers, Bushmills body shots and crystal meth jags in hot bed motel rooms. And how could yours truly remain in his self-imposed semi exile with all this evolutionary backsliding in this election year?
Because what to our blackened eyes did appear but the usual crop of Republican assclowns at their usual assclownery? Well, there was Dennis "the Menace" Hastert (1) getting slapped on the wrist for structuring while his supporters like Tom DeLay (5) short-stroked their violins; There were the thugs of Hillary Clinton (7) who smeared Bernie Sanders and his supporters the night before Election Day; There was North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory (4) for blaming his bathroom bill on a city mayor; Then there was Ted Cruz (2) for leaping into Tim Burton's world without looking.
So jump aboard the hay ride and let's jeer from on high this week's bumper crop of assclowns and much, much more!
10)Maine Governor Paul LePage
On the 27th, at the dedication of a new education center at the University of Maine at Farmington, Augusta's ongoing dumpster fire Paul LePage had a meltdown about 15 seconds into his speech when he encountered silent protesters holding up signs calling him "Maine's shame" and giving him an "F" on his environmental report card. After less than a minute behind the podium, Chris Christie's Mini Me waddled away and called the protesters "idiots".
This is pretty consistent with ruinous Republican Governors who meet even mild criticism face to face. Earlier this month, Rick Scott got blasted by a Florida voter at a Starbucks and Scott immediately spent money on an attack ad that essentially punched down at his antagonist. And who can forget Sam Brownback years ago creepily stalking teenager Emma Sullivan whom he'd perceived to have slighted him?
These right wing pricks really are like the Mafia, aren't they? This is why the mob buys politicians, because it keeps the body count low.
9) Donald Trump
Sure, Donald, and I guess Carly Fiorina's the Babushka Lady.
Today on Fox & Frauds, Donald Trump called in to float a conspiracy theory that's ripe for Alex Jones: That Ted Cruz's father Rafael was with Lee Harvey Oswald just before the Kennedy shooting. And where's he getting this hot tip from? His buddies at the National Enquirer. Yeah, Rafael Cruz deserves to be held in a nursing home for the rest of his life to be chased by the nice nurses and orderlies with the paper cups but seriously?
OK, as long as we're talking about the fathers of candidates, explain this, Double Weave (click on image for expanded view):
Yeah, that would be the same Fred C. Trump, racist slumlord, who forever earned the enmity of legendary balladeer Woodie Guthrie.
8) Gary Schaffrick
The next time you hear some misinformed right wing nut job (sorry for the tautology) screaming about transgendered people molesting our kids in bathrooms, kindly refer them to this story out of Bristol, CT:
Gary Schaffrick, until recently the Connecticut GOP treasurer, was arrested for sexual improprieties with a five year-old boy. I won't go on about what he'd done to this poor child because vomit is hard to clean out of keyboards but one of the charges involved him bathing in the nude with that same tot.
But wait, it gets better:
Even with a trial pending, this pederast is still on the state GOP payroll pulling down ten grand a year and, not only that, the CT Republican Party plans to send him to Cleveland to be one of their state delegates at the Republican National Convention.
Rock-ribbed, conservative Republican family values!
7) Paid Hillary Trolls
"So, son, what do you want to be when you grow up?"
"Gee, Dad, I want to be a paid political operative who posts kiddie porn on the walls of candidates who won't pay me."
"Attaboy, aim high!"
This is apparently how mercenary Hillary Clinton troll "Casey Champagne" wants to spend his life. Because on the night before the five state mid Atlantic primary, this bloated fuck and his other paid minions swarmed virtually every Sanders Facebook wall like so many Joseph David Chadwicks and reported them for threats of violence that weren't even being made. To hedge their bets, they even posted kiddie porn on Sanders' walls and reported them for that. As Facebook relies on algorithms to make human decisions, the stupid cunts took down the Sanders walls just hours before the polls opened.
Luckily for us, "Casey" was stupid enough to gloat on Bros 4 Hillary about his hatchet job with his fellow trolls and wound up getting himself suspended. Of course, there's at least one person who claims this didn't really happen, which doesn't explain why this happened solely to Sanders pages, why Casey was openly bragging to his buddies if it was all just a "glitch", as the Daily Beast strenuously avers, or why Champagne's own Facebook wall was deleted or why this "glitch" just happened to transpire the night before a five state primary.
Maybe it really was all just a coincidence, just like 126,000 people getting purged from the voter rolls of a NYC borough infamous for its political activism.
Yeah, the Benghazi Select Committee is so desperate to kneecap Hillary Clinton before the Democratic convention that they're willing to accept the testimony of anonymous people who called in to right wing talk shows claiming to be drone pilots during the Benghazi attack.
That's right: Republicans are screaming about nonexistent voter fraud, non existent transgendered people molesting kids in bathrooms, Donald Trump claims through the National Enquirer Ted Cruz's father helped Oswald and the Benghazi Select Committee wants to interview callers to right wing talk shows. And these assclowns have control of Congress, making us Americans without a shadow of a doubt the stupidest people in the history of carbon.
5)Tom Delay & Co.
It seems God Himself likes to diddle the wee ones, according to former House Majority Leader and failed Lollipop Guild Member Tom DeLay when he cosigned a letter with 41 other suspiciously supportive right wing nut jobs, including former CIA Director Porter Goss, to defend crook and pederast Dennis Hastert. At one point, the letter actually stated that Hastert got his "integrity and values from God."
So, God would have been on board with Hastert redirecting $3.5 million in lobbyist money for the purpose of hushing one of his (at least) half dozen victims of child sexual assault? His poor kid Jesus must've gotten a good hiding after that money changer incident on the Sabbath. No wonder Republicans love God so much. It's not they who have His values. In their addled minds, it's He who shares theirs.
4) North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory
"Hold on there, hoss. Y'all better have a swinging dick before you walk in that men's room!"
I think many of us on the less seedy side of the tracks can agree that North Carolina's HB2, aka "the Bathroom Bill" that prevents transgendered people from going to the proper restroom, is the most rancid anti-LGBT bullshit since Leviticus. The typically clueless GOP in North Carolina was genuinely shocked, shocked when the backlash hit them. Now North Carolina Republicans are going around in circles like so many Curly Howards on Wild Hyacinth and blaming anyone and everyone for the bill's ruinous wake.
McCrory and his stooges in the NC legislature are blaming Charlotte Mayor Jennifer Roberts and her liberalism for Paypal pulling out of a data center project that would've brought 400 jobs to the state. The NC Attorney General is blaming McCrory. And the state's Republicans are actually blaming the Democrats for not passing homophobic legislation when they had the chance.
Yes, you read that correctly. I hardly ever thought I would by conscience ever include America's favorite fake Nobel economics laureate on this august list even after all his rah rah, sis boom bahing of Hillary Clinton in his "The Conscience of a Liberal" byline in the Times. Then again, I never expected Krugman to write something as astoundingly clueless as "Bernie's Bad End".
Believe it or not, the Krug Man is taking the preemptory conspiracy theorist tactic with the Sanders campaign when they, justly, complain the Democratic primary and its staggeringly corrupt super delegate system is stacked in Hillary's favor. Krugman writes,
...Sanders did far better
than expected, giving him and his movement a good claim to have a big
say in the Democratic agenda for 2016 and perhaps setting the movement
up as the party’s future. But to take that position — to turn defeat in
the primary into a moral victory — he would have had to accept the will
of the voters with grace.
What we’re getting
instead is an epic descent into whining. He dismissed Clinton victories
driven by black voters as products of the conservative Deep South; he
suggested that his defeat in New York was unfair because it was a closed
primary (you can argue this case either way, but requiring that you
identity as a Democrat to choose the Democratic nominee is hardly voter
suppression... he has
turned to a sort of fact-free complaint that any process under which
Bernie Sanders loses is ipso facto unfair, and superdelegates should
choose him despite a 3 million vote deficit.
Well, when a candidate wins several states, some by a margin as much as 82%, and still doesn't win a super delegate, then who's really not "accept(ing) the will of the voters with grace"? How about changed party affiliations, missing Democratic ballots, 126,000 purged from the rolls in Brooklyn alone? Does that count as voter suppression? Plus, and you'll never hear a peep from Krugman about his Goldwater Girl's email scandal is about to get pegged in the thermonuclear red zone. Paul, shut the fuck up and go back to writing about soporific economic theory.
2) Ted Cruz and Carly Fiorina
Sure, it's that time of the year when presidential candidates should begin thinking of potential running mates in advance of the elections. But when you stand no mathematical chance of getting your party's nomination, doing so comes off as looking something more pathetic than your typical drape-measuring. Days ago, Ted Cruz named Carly Fiorina as his Vice Presidential running mate. Fiorina, you might remember, didn't come close to winning a single primary or caucus before dropping out of the race. Seriously, it looks as if Cruz paid Fiorina a half a million dollars to be his running mate.
It's hard to see what Cruz sees in a failed HP CEO who tanked the company after laying off 30,000 employees and who looks like a rejected character in a Tim Burton movie. It's equally hard to see, especially regards Fiorina's massive unpopularity, what part of the country she'd help him in. But this transparently cynical attempt to appear up to date on women's rights is just a pathetic ploy to suck up to the female vote that has already by and large pledged itself to Carly's ongoing obsession, Hillary Clinton.
Seriously, this dick move on Cruz's part makes John McCain inflicting Sarah Palin on us look like a stroke of political genius. Maybe, after Trump mops up the floor with them in California and elsewhere, the GOP's version of Charlie Starkweather and Caril Ann Fugate can sign a non-aggression pact with North Korea.
1) Former House Speaker Dennis Hastert
13 years ago, with the irony typical of clueless "For thee, not for me, mofos" Republicans, Dennis Hastert once suggested that child molesters should be put in prison for the rest of their lives and that statutes of limitations for his fellow pedophiles should be abolished. Well, a few days ago, Dennis Hastert got slapped on the wrist with a maximum prison sentence of 15 months, which is about the time it takes the 74 year-old former Speaker to get it up, for the white collar crime of structuring.
Oh, but the kid gloves comeuppance didn't stop there, Outraged Reader, because Dennis the Menace also got socked with a $250,000 fine, which he can easily take out of his remaining $1.8 million in hush money.
Now we finally understand why America's most notorious and hands-on wrestling coach essentially stood by and did nothing during the Mark Foley sex scandal.