Category Archives: 2012 presidential election

Back When We Were Great

Donald Trump talks a lot about how his supporters “just want this country to be great again,” a line he repeats so often that he might as well slap it on a bumper sticker (here’s a representative example.) What he seems to be saying is that at some point in our past we were great but we are no longer great and our lack of greatness sucks and has caused much consternation among people who buy the bullshit that Trump is selling.

However, I have yet to find anyone who has asked him when, exactly, this “great” period was. What era of American greatness would they like to return us to? Anyone?

Is Trump talking about back when we had Jim Crow laws and women couldn’t open a bank account without their husband’s permission? Is he talking about when Reagan was president and we were trading arms for hostages and ginning up war in the jungles of Central America?

Is he talking about all of those times when our CIA was overthrowing democratically-elected governments in countries populated by brown people? Is he talking about when our economy was inflated on the hot air and promises of hedge fund managers and Wall Street rip-off artists?

What is this fucking great time when we were all awesome that is so much better? Someone please tell me. Can you point to it on a calendar? In a history book? Or is it just some mythic time before we had a black president and a dysfunctional Congress and a general lack of comity in the public square?

Dying to know.


Filed under 2012 presidential election

The Eternal Victimization Of Mitt Romney

You may have heard that His Royal Mittster and Ladye Anne Mittster, aka, Mitt and Ann Romney, appeared on Fox News Sunday. A lot of choice excerpts from that appearance have been making the rounds, including Ann’s blaming the media for not giving Mitt “a fair shake” and Mitt blaming all the poors and their free Obamaphones.

Oh the poor dears. It’s all just so unfair!

But no, what everyone seems to have missed is this, regarding his “unfortunate” 47% comment (and you need to watch the video at the link to hear it):

“It was a very unfortunate statement that I made. It’s not what I meant, I didn’t express myself as I wished I would have. When you speak in private, you don’t spend as much time thinking about how something could be twisted and distorted and can come out wrong and be used …”

“When you speak in private??? Let’s remember where Mitt’s infamous 47% remark was made: at a $50,000 a plate fundraiser at the Boca Raton, Florida, home of controversial private equity manager Marc Leder.

Mother Jones reported there were 150 people in attendance at the event. That’s not exactly “speaking in private.” It is speaking to people who share your elitist views about “makers” and “takers.” By those standards, I suppose giving an interview to Fox News could qualify as “speaking in private.”

Mitt still doesn’t get it. He’s playing the victim, whaah it’s so unfair that he was secretly recorded having a private conversation with one other person in an elevator! Except that’s not what happened. He was giving a campaign speech to 150 like-minded elites at a massive fundraiser for people just like him. Of course he said what he meant. Of course he said what he believed. He said what everyone else in that room believed, except the underpaid busboy or bartender with the courage to make that tape.

Sorry, Mitt and Ann. We saw you “you people” for exactly for who you are and we said, no thanks.


Filed under 2012 presidential election, Mitt Romney

It’s All About The Benjamins

Failed Connecticut Republican candidate for U.S. Senate Linda McMahon has some very angry ex-staffers. Seems McMahon. the pro wrestling magnate, has not paid her campaign workers. Let’s just say hilarity did not ensue when one affected staff member took his plight to the local media:

Twaine Don Gomes was one of the people who first complained to News 8. He was handed a check, but he says, the campaign told him they were mad that he came to News 8, so he got a little something extra in his envelope.

“Basically he handed me a check with a condom in it, told me I was screwed,” Gomes said. “That’s the rudest gesture you can ever do to a person, it’s like spitting in a person’s face.”

His check bounced as well. The workers say, this was the last thing they were expecting after spending hours in the cold, working hard for their candidate on election day.

Well, Twaine Don Gomes, Evette Brown and the rest: this is what happens when you work for Republicans. Credit cards cancelled in the middle of the night, before you’ve checked out of your hotel or made your way home. Bounced checks. It’s all about the Benjamins, as in, the currency, not actual people named Benjamin of course. This is fiscal conservatism at play. Screw the people. And hey, here’s a condom. Which is more than some people received.


Filed under 2012 presidential election

Dear GOP: Please Wake The F**k Up

Judging by the right-wing freak-out today, it appears conservatives still didn’t get the message. They’re pointing fingers at everyone except the obvious source of Tuesday’s electoral pantsing: themselves.

I’m going to outsource this post to Rachel Maddow, who last night articulated what I’ve been saying for months, but in a much better way. Please, Republicans. I know she’s a lesbian Socialist feminazi who suffers from mad cow disease and all the other horrible stuff you’ve said about her. But she’s also 100% right:

Ohio really did go to President Obama last night. And he really did win. And he really was born in Hawaii. And he really is legitimately president of the United States, again. And the Bureau of Labor Statistics did not make up a fake unemployment rate last month. And the Congressional Research Service really can find no evidence that cutting taxes on rich people grows the economy. And the polls were not skewed to oversample Democrats. And Nate Silver was not making up fake projections about the election to make conservatives feel bad. Nate Silver was doing math.

And climate change is real. And rape really does cause pregnancy sometimes. And evolution is a thing. And Benghazi was an attack on us, it was not a scandal by us. And nobody is taking away anyone’s guns. And taxes have not gone up. And the deficit is dropping, actually. And Saddam Hussein did not have weapons of mass destruction. And the moon landing was real. And FEMA is not building concentration camps. And UN election observers are not taking over Texas. And moderate reforms of the regulations on the insurance industry and the financial services industry in this country are not the same thing as Communism.

Listen, last night was a good night for liberals and for Democrats for very obvious reasons, but it was also, possibly, a good night for this country as a whole. Because in this country, we have a two-party system in government. And the idea is supposed to be that the two sides both come up with ways to confront and fix the real problems facing our country. They both propose possible solutions to our real problems. And we debate between those possible solutions. And by the process of debate, we pick the best idea. That competition between good ideas from both sides about real problems in the real country should result in our country having better choices, better options, than if only one side is really working on the hard stuff. And if the Republican Party and the conservative movement and the conservative media is stuck a vacuum-sealed door-locked spin cycle of telling each other what makes them feel good and denying the factual, lived truth of the world, then we are all deprived as a nation of the constructive debate about competing feasible ideas about real problems.

Last night the Republicans got shellacked, and they had no idea it was coming. And we saw them in real time, in real humiliating time, not believe it, even as it was happening to them. And unless they are going to secede, they are going to have to pop the factual bubble they have been so happy living inside if they do not want to get shellacked again, and that will be a painful process for them, but it will be good for the whole country, left, right, and center.

You guys, we’re counting on you. Wake up. There are real problems in the world. There are real, knowable facts in the world. Let’s accept those and talk about how we might approach our problems differently. Let’s move on from there. If the Republican Party and the conservative movement and conservative media are forced to do that by the humiliation they were dealt last night, we will all be better off as a nation. And in that spirit, congratulations.

“Facts have a liberal bias” isn’t just a lefty joke. It’s literally been the Republican Party message for the past 10 years. It’s not working for you guys.

That is all.


Filed under 2012 presidential election, Republican Party

Made Our Statement

I’m digging deep into the archive for this post-election musical message. Unless you were raised around Southern California surf culture you’ve probably never heard of this band or this tune, but when I was growing up my sister and I played this album until the needle wore through the grooves (for you young kids out there, that’s how we used to play music back in the dinosaur age: with a needle placed in grooves on a large circle of vinyl. I know, weird, huh?)

Anyway, so a few thoughts on the election before I crawl back into my writing cave, which is going very well, thank you! Keep in mind, none of this applies to Tennessee, which as we all know is the Republican Party’s last stand. But I’m just going to say right now: last night was a stunning rebuke of the Tea Party and Republican extremism. Scott Brown, the guy who ushered in the “Tea Party wave”? Gone. Richard Mourdock and Todd Akin and their crackpot ideas about women and rape? Gone. Marriage equality passes in Maryland and Maine. Marijuana legalization measures pass in Colorado and Washington.

Sheldon Adelson and the Koch Brothers and the rest? You guys just pissed a fortune down the drain for nothing. You could have used that money to “create jobs,” like you always say you will. Instead you tried to buy the election and you failed, big time. Way to go, assholes.

David Siegel? Enjoy your time on your Caribbean island. We’ll get along fine without you and your predatory time share empire.

And Mitch McConnell? You failed at your stated number one priority: making Obama a one-term president.

Before the election, Bruce Barry wrote:

Is losing two in a row to a guy you frame as a proto-socialist Kenyan enough to get through to the faithful that a gay-baiting immigrant-hating anti-science white people’s party is just not going to fly long term as a vehicle for national political influence?

Really good question. If it doesn’t, it should. The demographics are not in the Republican Party’s favor. They’re going to have to stop being the party of cranky old white guys. They’re going to have to stop being the party of anti-government-except-where-women’s-bodies-are-concerned. They’re going to have stop being the party of intolerant Christian bigotry trying to legislatively force their views about birth control and reproductive choice on non-believers. You know, once upon a time evangelicals were pro-choice and pro-contraception, even using the Bible to support that viewpoint. Whether it was political opportunism or a reinterpretation of Scripture that caused their complete about-face I have no idea, but it’s important to remember that their current position on this issue is a relatively recent thing.

So, we’ve made our statement and we’re waiting on you. Are you going to crack open that echo chamber and join the rest of us in the reality-based community? Or are you going to double down on the denialism? Will Sen. Bob Corker join in another Frank Luntz-sponsored inauguration night strategy session on obstructionism? Will Republicans continue to be the party of no?

Will conservatives continue to deny every fact that doesn’t match their ideology? Are we going to keep hearing about how the BLS and CBO and every other statistical barometer is biased? That the polls are skewed and the science is wrong and the birth certificate is fake? Or have you guys got the message that this just isn’t working for you?

I honestly don’t know if the Republican Party is institutionally capable of changing. I’ve mentioned before how the Fox News echo chamber has not served the Republican Party long-term. It’s served as a petri dish for extremism, not moderation.

Last night we switched to Fox News for a brief period because we heard the mood there was “funereal.” I got to see Greta Van Susteren interview Sarah Palin — and let me say, Palin looks awful. Her cheeks are sunken and hollow, something she tried to compensate for with extremely poofy hair, and she was so over-bronzed I wondered if she was headed for an interview on Univision next. Has she been ill? I haven’t heard anything to that effect but she did not look healthy. Anyway, Palin was saying that she “couldn’t believe the country would do this,” she couldn’t believe the country would vote for “crushing debt” and then there was a bunch of word salad about the Founding Fathers wrote in the Constitution that we’re supposed to have a balanced budget (it does? Pretty sure you guys haven’t been able to pass that one), which Obama hasn’t done, and she just couldn’t believe it all. And that’s the Republican Party in a nutshell. They just can’t believe it so they stick their fingers in their ears and go la la la la. I just wonder how much longer they can keep this up.

And also, I have a message for Democrats. For God’s sake, in the name of all that is holy, please sweet Jesus use this momentum and educate your base that elections are not every four years. They’re every two years. Hell, they’re every year, but national elections are every two years, and these races are just as important as the presidential one. The failure of the Democratic Party to send this message after 2008 is how we got in this mess to begin with. People stayed home and turned the House of Representatives over to a bunch of crazies, who then redrew congressional districts to suit them. So please, please, please use your awesome OFA ground game to start educating your voters now. If we’re going to keep moving forward we need to keep the momentum going. God, I’ve been saying this for years, since 2004, and for some reason Democratic Party organizers just don’t seem to get it.

And to the news media: the first one of you yahoos who starts blabbering on about Paul Ryan in 2016 or Jeb Bush or Hillary Clinton is going to get a pie in the face. Give us a fucking break.


Filed under 2012 presidential election, Republican Party

Garage Full Of Campaign Supporters

Good grief. Check out Mitt Romney’s campaign tumblr, just now:

A “garage full of supporters”? Is that anything like “binders full of women”? Dude, you sure you’re not standing in front of a Foxconn factory in China?

What the hell is wrong with these people? Who thought having Mitt Romney waving outside a chain-link fence topped with barbed wire was good optics? Especially in light of recent reports like this one.


Filed under 2012 presidential election, Mitt Romney

At Least He Had His Voter ID


The machine has been “recalibrated” and is back in use. Don’t worry, I’m sure everything will be just fine! Honest!


Via Wonkette:

This is what happens when you try to vote for President Obama in Pennsylvania:

I initially selected Obama but Romney was highlighted. I assumed it was being picky so I deselected Romney and tried Obama again, this time more carefully, and still got Romney. Being a software developer, I immediately went into troubleshoot mode. I first thought the calibration was off and tried selecting Jill Stein to actually highlight Obama. Nope. Jill Stein was selected just fine. Next I deselected her and started at the top of Romney’s name and started tapping very closely together to find the ‘active areas’. From the top of Romney’s button down to the bottom of the black checkbox beside Obama’s name was all active for Romney. From the bottom of that same checkbox to the bottom of the Obama button (basically a small white sliver) is what let me choose Obama. Stein’s button was fine. All other buttons worked fine.

I asked the voters on either side of me if they had any problems and they reported they did not. I then called over a volunteer to have a look at it. She him hawed for a bit then calmly said “It’s nothing to worry about, everything will be OK.” and went back to what she was doing. I then recorded this video.

Wonder if it’s one of those machines owned by those former Bain executives?


Filed under 2012 presidential election, electronic voting