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November 05, 2018

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I hope George Conway is brushing up his Match.com, OKCupid and Tinder profiles for his return to the singles life. He's still a good-looking man. I wonder who will get the Clinton dicpics in the divorce settlement:

https://talkingpointsmemo.com/news/kellyanne-conways-husband-illegal-to-appoint-whitaker-as-acting-ag

@marty,
I really only pay attention to the 11 contiguous western states. There, it was a good night for the Dems, with a chance to become excellent.

Flipped governors in NM and NV and the Colorado state senate, giving a blue "trifecta" in each. Flipped Heller's US Senate seat in NV. Flipped five US House seats so far with two more probable. Medical marijuana and Medicaid expansion leading in Utah.

Three more US House seats and the Arizona US Senate seat that would make it excellent are going to be very tight. I take it as a good sign for the Dems that the Arizona Republicans have now sued to try to block counting a bunch of the last-minute ballots.

The "bluing" of the West is a 30 year trend now.

Otherwise mostly ssdd

I don't think Marty means that to stand for "same surface, different deep", but it should. US politics now aren't about conservative versus liberal. For anyone with their eyes open it's fascists v anti-fascists.

Which side are you on?

Marty, do please come back. The personal nastiness you referred to, in both directions, is so regrettable and unnecessary. We have so much past history and reason to think better than that of each other, while the world continues to go to hell in a handbasket. I hope we can all put it behind us. To quote Auden, and you must excuse my emotionalism, I am currently in a very heightened emotional state after the death of my mother:

We must love one another or die.

Michael Cain is, as usual, quite accurate.

Pro Bono has the big picture succinctly framed.

Conservative hispanics forcibly blocked from seeking asylum at U.S. border.

https://www.marketwatch.com/story/trump-administration-moves-to-limit-asylum-at-mexican-border-2018-11-08?siteid=bigcharts&dist=bigcharts

What GFTNC said.

Marty has birthright citizenship at OBWI.

The "bluing" of the West is a 30 year trend now.

Ah, but is it? You can get to blue two ways. First, as you suggest, by getting more blue. But the second, which seems very much the case in California**, is by starting with purple and subtracting red. It would be interesting to know which is happening in the other western states.

** That is, it isn't so much that what the Democrats stand for/do is becoming more popular in California. It's more that what the Republicans insist on standing for is getting so far away from what the population wants. Not a change in the popular desires (although there is some of that) so much as a determination to walk away from what was already there.

Marty has birthright citizenship at OBWI.

Hell, I'd restore Brett Bellmore's citizenship. Or at least grant him asylum.

--TP

Broward effing County, Florida .... again. That place has more sequels that "Halloween", the movie.

https://twitter.com/SteveKornacki

We need good ole Brett back seasonally to bring in the crops.

wj,

What's your theory as to why "Republicans insist on standing" for things that are "so far away from what the population wants"?

--TP

https://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/politics/fl-ne-election-broward-unusual-total-20181108-story.html

https://www.mediamatters.org/video/2018/11/08/acting-attorney-general-matthew-whitaker-compared-taxation-theft-gunpoint-2013-senate-campaign-event/222036

And you'll return the federal salary and health care benes you and your family steal at the point of a gun in exactly the same manner, Whitaker.

What's your theory as to why "Republicans insist on standing" for things that are "so far away from what the population wants"?

I think that, as much as anything, the root cause was timing. In both parties, there is a tendency for the partisans further from the center to think that their view is the right one -- and even pre-Internet, there was a tendency for people to talk mostly to those who agree with them. The parties resisted pulling away from the center because their leaders mostly realized that it was, in the long term, politically toxic.

But with Prop 187 (in 1994) the Republican leadership, specifically Governor Wilson, decided to embrace an initiative to establish a state-run citizenship screening system and prohibit illegal immigrants from using non-emergency health care, public education, and other services. It passed (although it was subsequently found to be unconstitutional), and Wilson got reelected governor. But he was the last Republican to win a general election for Governor of California**.

What that did was push out a growing segment of the population (Hispanic voters), and alienate those who dislike xenophobic and racist appeals. It was, I think, as big step in the partisan sorting which we currently see -- the days of liberal Republicans and conservative Democrats seem to mostly be behind us. And then, the only way to win a primary was to appeal to those in what was no longer a population that reflected the state as a whole.

But it could equally well have been the Democrats who got bitten by the extremist bug first. Certainly there are plenty of strong liberals here, just as there are plenty of strong conservatives. ("Plenty" in this context meaning maybe 10%-15% of the voters.) But the Democrats were fortunate enough to have leaders who refused to embrace the extremes. And so dodged the bullet.

The best hope for the GOP in California today is, inadvertently, the "top two" / open primary system that we have adopted. As a result, getting into the general election is far more likely that previously to require moderation. Sure, a relatively extreme Republican can make the general if there is only one Republican but numerous Democrats on offer in the primary. But given multiple candidates from both parties, the extremists have a harder time getting through the primary filter.

Over time, the rewards will, I hope, move the GOP back towards the center. But I confess that it is taking far longer than I had initially hoped.

** Schwartzenegger was an anomaly, born of a free-for-all election to replaced a recalled governor. He would never have made it thru a regular Republican primary -- just way too moderate.

filched from Hullabaloo:

"I’m sitting in an apartment the likes of which nobody’s ever seen. And yet I represent the workers of the world. And they love me and I love them. I think people aspire to do things. And they aspire to watch people. I don’t think they want to see the president carrying his luggage out of Air Force One. And that’s pretty much the way it is."

That's mp.

It's like Trotsky dodged the ice pic, migrated north and swam the Rio Grande, finally making it to Hollywood, where he worked his way on to every casting couch, changed his name to Robin Leach and produced and hosted "Lifestyles of The Rich and Famous".

"the likes of which nobody's ever seen."

A nobody did see it. Him.

"I represent the workers of the world"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wgzdb0txR_c

The longer term question is how does the Democratic party leverage the demographic shift if you take immigration off the table.

The GOP will never initiate or pass immigration reform on its own. This has been proven. They have pulled back even from bi-partisan efforts.

So if the Dems manage to pull that feat off, it would be solely due to their effort, and they will reap the long term political rewards.

As they should.

For anyone with their eyes open it's fascists v anti-fascists.

Which side are you on?

Everyone needs to decide this.

"We must love one another or die."

From wikipedia:

"In the mid-1950s Auden began to refuse permission to editors who asked to reprint the poem in anthologies. In 1955, he allowed Oscar Williams to include it complete in The New Pocket Anthology of American Verse, but altered the most famous line to read "We must love one another and die." Later he allowed the poem to be reprinted only once, in a Penguin Books anthology Poetry of the Thirties (1964), with a note saying about this and four other early poems, 'Mr. W. H. Auden considers these five poems to be trash which he is ashamed to have written.'"

There were lessons learned from WWII, even by the great poet.

What wj is talking about as a data visualization viewed nationally:

https://twitter.com/rowlsmanthorpe/status/1060104225089351680

The Rs have been marching steadily away from their natural centrist coalitions since the 90s.

Thanks, Nous. I'd guess that California initially saw something similar. And the Republican presence in the state legislature imploded.

But here is the defense: Auden wrote, “We must love one another or die” not because it expressed the most accurate moral or social theory. He said it because he wanted to grab the stranger who read his verse and communicate a disinterested, ethical love as the world was engulfed by hatred. It was an impartial love that extended to anyone, Jew or German, gay or straight, who was “composed … / Of Eros and of dust.” To put that down on paper took courage, and maybe the right response is assent.

This is by Peter Levine, and I agree with it. Auden was a very great poet, but he was not always right, even about his own past poems. Intolerance of dissent is an evil, whoever displays it, and the quality in ObWi which has allowed voices with opposing views (particularly when they are the voices of decent people) to be heard is valuable, and worth fighting for.

Intolerance of dissent is an evil, whoever displays it, and the quality in ObWi which has allowed voices with opposing views (particularly when they are the voices of decent people) to be heard is valuable, and worth fighting for.

I would not be in favor of banning anyone, but I don't think that all views are valuable, other than they represent attitudes that need to be fought. I'm not going to comment on the "decency" of anyone, since I believe that there's a bit of light in every person. But people make choices, and some of those choices are wrong. Particularly when they enable eradicating long-standing norms, such as allowing asylum seekers refuge.

It's wrong. Not just misguided. Wrong.

The longer term question is how does the Democratic party leverage the demographic shift if you take immigration off the table.

This would be a more interesting point if there was any likelihood of immigration being taken off the table.

As far as I know, Marty temporarily walked away with the usual right-wing elderly white Republican "protect my money" victim syndrome, not because anyone told him to go away.

I think that, as much as anything, the root cause was timing.

In multiple ways in the West. Populations started to explode, with a large number of Richard Florida's young, educated, creative class. Defined broadly -- which Florida has always been slow to do -- and including programmers, digital widget designers, and all the support for same. Support's important. A friend who is a former pipefitter, now with a PhD, says, "You can do basic boiler work and ruin your back by the time you're 35. Or you can do finicky work in huge new research hospitals that requires a bunch more training and math, and work forever. If my back had held out for two more years until the big hospital growth wave started, I'd never have gone to college."

When I worked as staff for the Colorado legislature, I lost track of the number of times I had the conversation, "Representative X, Colorado is not the small, poor, rural state you remember. It's a medium-sized, highly-educated, high-income, technology-driven state, no matter that your district doesn't reflect that. And policy has to change." Less directly than that, and more politely. I had a fairly thick skin when I started that job, and it got a lot thicker.

I'm in a mood:

It's rumored that John Lennon, had he lived, would have changed the title of "Give Peace A Chance" to "Give Peace Some Pants"

Likewise, Macca's original line for the coda of Abbey Road was "And at the end, he who takes the love, gets even more love, and makes money too.

God in Corinthians:

"Love is seethingly impatient, love is mean. It envies what it hasn't and proudly boasts when it taketh more. Others, schmothers ... patooey ...it runs seekingly to the nearest mirror for a glimpse of itself and angrily smashes the mirror when it findeth not itself but a ledger of its debits and then alters via double entry the credits to enhance its self-image."

Well, that before God's speechwriters took it away from Ayn Rand and punched it up a bit:

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs."

Songwriter Paul Francis Webster wrote: "Love Is A Mighty Expensive Thing" from the movie of the same title.

Robert Frost's first moving lines of the poem "Two Look At Two"

"Love and forgetting might have carried them
a little further up the mountainside, but he forgot to bring the water so she said "Ah, forget it, ya dope" and they trudged homeward along the same old loveless road they always take.

And, of course, Auden's poetic heirs:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E0LAs7X5ybE

Note: Bipartisan immigration reform, within grasp, has been swept off the table infinite times by conservatives over the past 25 years. Their deep-thinking cadres, their Stephen Millers never is short supply, told them victory in (stolen) elections can be had for a generation by demonizing and denying the Other in America and the Other trying to enter America. There is a great reservoir of hatred to be tapped in the base. It's political fracking. It's what demagogues do and keep doing until their bellies are slit open in the public square.

Geez. What part of "I yield" was so difficult to understand?

You people are relentless.

;-)

Marty has birthright citizenship at OBWI.

Upvote.

...and the Arizona US Senate seat

Another 160,000 ballots processed today and Sinema(D) has taken a 9,600 vote lead. On the order of another half-million ballots to go...

I think that, as much as anything, the root cause was timing.

Also in the sense that politics is a trailing indicator of where society and culture are headed.

Sgt. Ron Helus
Cody Coffman
Justin Meek
Alaina Housley
Sean Adler

https://www.vcstar.com/story/news/local/communities/conejo-valley/2018/11/08/thousand-oaks-california-shooting-these-victims/1931620002/

Also in the sense that politics is a trailing indicator of where society and culture are headed.

Necessarily, since all those 0 to 17 year olds don't vote, but they do absorb the culture around them. In contrast to us 65+ types, who vote but frequently based on the remembered culture of our youth.

Also in the sense that politics is a trailing indicator of where society and culture are headed.

Even without evil intent, the system is set up to skew older, whiter, richer, and more male than the voter population in general. As I say more often than I should, "Who's the most underrepresented group of Americans in Congress and state legislatures? Hourly wage slaves."

Apparently one of the victims of this latest shooting was a survivor of the Kas Begas shooting. What!?!

Sheesh am I drunk? Las Vegas.

Daniel Manrique

The person Sebastian referenced

Telemachus "Tel" Orfanos

Noel Sparks

Jake Dunham

and his friend
Blake Dingman

Kristina Morrisette

Marky Meza

Some folks remain on the republican party's death panel waiting list:

https://digbysblog.blogspot.com/2018/11/theyre-still-hounding-christine-blasey.html

It's not as easy to track down the sources of online threats as some police procedural TV shows would suggest. Nonetheless, we managed it with the Russian elections attacks. I hope someone manages to do it in Ms Ford's case. (Maybe use some of the resources we currently waste pursuing marijuana users? With Sessions gone, that might even be possible....)

The only way we get these scum to back off is if they start ending up in jail.

Since this is an Open Thread, here's something I found fascinating.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2018/11/09/years-after-jesuits-were-expelled-towns-near-their-missions-still-have-higher-education-incomes/ **

In part, no doubt, because it supports my preexisting belief in the merits of education of all kinds.

** in the interests of accuracy this should probably have been titled "centuries-after", rather than "years-after".

“If we don’t have good will toward men in this world, we will destroy ourselves,” King said. “There have always been those who argued that the end justifies the means, that the means really aren’t important,” he said. “But we will never have peace in the world until men everywhere recognize that ends are not cut off from means, because the means represent the ideal in the making, and the end in process, and ultimately you can’t reach good ends through evil means, because the means represent the seed and the end represents the tree.”

From the Count's New Yorker link over on the We are here to Witness thread, a wonderful quotation from Martin Luther King that I didn't remember. This is a follow-up to our discussion of what is legitimate and what is not to counter the disgusting Trumpian regime and the miasma of intolerance and hatred it has spread....

A little thought piece for those of you who suggest that I'm completely daft to think the GOP might ever step away from the crazies.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/moderate-republicans-arent-dead-theyre-hiding-in-plain-sight/2018/11/09/268c7b1c-e365-11e8-ab2c-b31dcd53ca6b_story.html
(Note that the author focuses on what we see at the local and state level, not the national level.)

It will likely be a long, slow slog. But perhaps not entirely a fols errand after all.

A new nullification crisis on the way ?
https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2018/11/trump-acting-attorney-general-whitaker-believes-states-right-nullify-federal-laws.html

A little thought piece for those of you who suggest that I'm completely daft to think the GOP might ever step away from the crazies.

That's all good.

Then again, some of them simply become (D)'s.

Democrats - the party of sanity.

And I don't mind seeing the back of Rohrbacher.

A new nullification crisis on the way

I actually don't mind if a state opts to decline federal money rather than comply with some regulation or other. Depends on the situation to some degree, but in principle it doesn't bug me overly much.

To go from that, to nullification, is a different story. Whitaker needs to go.

The Rs have been marching steadily away from their natural centrist coalitions since the 90s1877.

Fixed.

all of that said, I'd be delighted if the (R) party began cranking out Charlie Bakers everywhere. Baker is my governor, I have my issues with him, but he mostly is focused on keeping the lights on.

and that, plus the fact that the legislature is utterly dominated by (D)'s, seems to be a workable arrangement. they balance each other, somewhat, and they mostly try to get stuff done.

one phenomenon that is cited in wj's piece is the fact that even "conservative" places are becoming more urbanized. for good or ill. but whether it's for good or ill, it means they will also become less "conservative" in the sense that that term is used, in the US, in recent decades.

specifically, it means they will become less anti-government. because population density brings the benefits of the public sector into sharp relief.

and I'm not talking about welfare, I'm talking about stuff like transportation and trash collection.

conservatives need to get their heads around the idea that the population is becoming increasingly urban. if they have policies that will serve that demographic well, then maybe they'll continue to have a voice. if not, they'll be left behind.

not my circus, not my monkeys.

When the GOP finally decides to purge itself of the cRaZiES, it has the firearms on hand to do so. And knows where they live.

Speed the day.

And I don't mind seeing the back of Rohrbacher.

Amen, brother, amen!

(Besides, why does Putin need a Congressman any more, when he's got a President? Gotta be far more cost-effective.)

one phenomenon that is cited in wj's piece is the fact that even "conservative" places are becoming more urbanized. for good or ill. but whether it's for good or ill, it means they will also become less "conservative" in the sense that that term is used, in the US, in recent decades.

I keep thinking. Suppose one of those Silicon Valley billionaires who give pots of money to the Democrats simple decided to site his next major development facility in, say, Wyoming. A small country town goes urban; a rural state with a tiny population suddenly acquires a very differeny demographic. Be a far more effective use of his money.

GftNC - I just hunted down King's "A Christmas Sermon on Peace" and there's a lot more in the sermon worth chewing on as well.

Now let me suggest first that if we are to have peace on earth, our loyalties must become ecumenical rather than sectional. Our loyalties must transcend our race, our tribe, our class, and our nation; and this means we must develop a world perspective. No individual can live alone; no nation can live alone, and as long as we try, the more we are going to have war in this world. Now the judgment of God is upon us, and we must either learn to live together as brothers or we are all going to perish together as fools.

Though we may perish together as fools even if humans learn to coexist if we cannot also learn to live in harmony with our ecosystem as well.

Thank you, Nous. That looks wonderful - will give it proper attention.

The centennial ceremonies to mark the Armistice have been very moving. You all may be able to see some of it on the BBC. I'm certain I don't have to tell you what the general attitude toward Trump has been, suffice to say that this photograph of Obama in 2010 has been much in evidence:

https://twitter.com/PickardJE/status/1061322527933415426/photo/1

and Macron's tweet with this one-word comment, ditto:

https://twitter.com/EmmanuelMacron/status/1061293561059201024

It will likely be a long, slow slog...

Indeed...
https://thehill.com/homenews/house/415922-dem-wins-leave-behind-a-more-conservative-gop-conference

An explanation, a truly classy explanation, of why the Republicans lost the House.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/rep-jason-lewis-blames-house-gop-defeat-on-john-mccain/2018/11/12/afecce86-e6a1-11e8-bbdb-72fdbf9d4fed_story.html
As you can see, it had nothing to do with Trump at all. At least, in this alternate universe.

Katie Porter has been declared the winner in CA’s 45th, defeating Trump stalwart Mimi Walters. That’s Orange County aka The Orange Curtain. Young Kim, the last remaining OC Republican in the house has just fallen behind Gil Cisneros by almost a thousand votes and the late ballots have been going his way 58/42. Reagan’s launching pad has flipped.

dem-wins-leave-behind-a-more-conservative-gop-conference

it almost couldn't be otherwise.

winning elections in the US is mostly about shifting the center, because the edges will never change. the center shifts slightly left or slight right during a 'wave', but the edges remain.

Jared Golden has been declared the winner in Maine's 2nd district with the RCV count finished. Poliquin is still misleading the public, grasping at straws, and pursuing his lawsuit to try to nullify RCV, even though the voters approved it by referendum not once but twice, and even though it has been upheld in court several times already.

And if you were around here and paying attention for the past few years, it would not surprise you to hear that Poliquin is being as ungracious and sneery about it as possible.

Poliquin and LePage: nice to see your backsides. Especially sweet: "Poliquin’s loss will leave Maine Sen. Susan Collins as the only Republican member of the New England congressional delegation, which includes 34 senators and representatives." Praying for rain, so to speak, in 2020.

winning elections in the US is mostly about shifting the center, because the edges will never change. the center shifts slightly left or slight right during a 'wave', but the edges remain.

It's an opportunity to find out whether a party has some smart politicians, as opposed to ideological hacks. Smart politicians will look past the composition of their Congressional delegation to see what they need to do to get back to a majority. Ideological hacks will live happily in their little bubble.

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