.comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}
The Expansionist
Wednesday, November 03, 2010
 
The Good with the Bad. Yesterday's election may prove a very bad thing for the Nation, but not all of the results were bad. Three megamillionairesses LOST, despite pouring a collective $210 million of their own money into their campaigns. Linda McMahon, the crotch-kneeing harpie in Connecticut, lost $45M of her own money in her failed effort to become a U.S. Senator (Senatress?). Carly Fiorina spent over $5M of her own money in her failed attempt to unseat Barbara Boxer in a California race for U.S. Senate. And Meg Whitman poured some $160M of her own money into her failed attempt to become Governess of California. "Money talks, bullsh*t walks?" In this election, it seems that at least in some races both money and megamillionaire b.s. walked, at least on the Coasts.
+
Other very good things happened last nite: the Tea Party wingnut candidate for U.S. Senate in Delaware Christine O'Donnell was trounced, as was Tea Party candidate for Governor Carl Paladino — a millionaire who also used a lot of his own money — in NYState. Astonishingly, some of the Tea Party candidates who were defeated made speeches as tho they had won! Paladino, in a combative 'concession' speech, dared to claim that more than 40% of New Yorkers voted against the Democrat, Andrew Cuomo (son of an earlier NYS Governor, Mario C~), thus showing that New Yorkers favor the platform they had just massively defeated! The reality is that Paladino got LESS than 40%, according to tonite's local news on NYC television station WPIX.
+
Sarah Palin proved much less than the "kingmaker" she had been made out to be. She lost almost as many races as she 'won' — or is it "guessed at"? She may even have lost in her home state of Alaska! We won't know until all the write-in votes are counted, but at this point it looks as tho Lisa Murkowski, scioness of the Murkowski political dynasty that Palin hates, beat Palin's choice, Joe Miller.
+
In Nevada, Liberal Harry Reid decisively defeated another Tea Party loon, Sharron Angle, who tried to rally white power against Latinos, and was defeated by the Latino vote.
+
NY and CA surfed the Red Tide. NJ (my state) saw 1 seat in Congress move into the Red (but Dems will still outnumber Republicans 7 to 6 overall come January). NJ may be the most densely populated state in the Union, but it has a lot of rich suburbs and conservative rural areas that have always voted Republican. The one new Republican winner, Jon Runyan, is a former Philadelphia Eagles football-player celebrity, who defeated a one-term Jewish Democrat (John Adler) in a traditionally Republican district. The triumph of celebrity means very little, esp. in that on NJ television tonite Runyan expressed a desire to reach across the aisle (to Democrats) once seated, which is hardly the Tea Party attitude. (He is not, alas, an intellectual giant. In one debate, he was asked to name one Supreme Court decision in the past 12 or 20 years that he disagreed with, and he came up with Dred Scott — which was decided in 1857!)
+
Adler's defeat, along with that of Russ Feingold in Wisconsin, may be indicative of a reduction in the huge overrepresentation of Jews in both houses of Congress. If that actually happened nationwide — tho Richard Blumenthal, a Jew, will replace Chris Dodd, a Christian, in one of Connecticut's two Senate seats — that would also be to the good.
+
California voters turned thumbs-down to legalizing marijuana for recreational use. Wonderful (that is sincere, not ironic). In my state, voters approved a measure to forbid state government from raiding state-employee pension funds for current governmental expenses. Also wonderful.
+
In the less civilized areas of the Nation, alas, money and b.s. triumphed, thanks to the stupidity and weak will of the POP (Party of Pussies — i.e., Democrats). Obama and the Democrats repeatedly — indeed, nearly endlessly — alienated their base by selling out the Left and moving to the Right, just like the pseudo-Democrat Bill Clinton. Clinton sold out his Liberal base even as the Republicans waged full-scale war against him, culminating in Clinton's impeachment by the Republican-dominated House of Representatives of the day. Obama should heed that history. Reaching out to Republicans will NOT ensure they will not try to destroy his Administration, even impeach him, very personally. A lot of Tea Partiers keep talking about not wanting to wait until 2012 to get rid of Obama. Absent assassination, that pretty much leaves impeachment, doesn't it? I can't see Obama resigning, even if he should prove to be our first bad black President. And a vote to impeach Obama in the House of Representatives would be pointless (as it was with Clinton), in that Democrats retain control of the Senate, which tries impeachments.
+
Insane Misinterpretations. Tim Kaine, Democratic National Committee Chairman, is one of the fools who said on air today that the voters showed that they want the parties to work together. What!? The Republicans have been militantly obstructionist for Obama's entire term thus far, refusing to work with the Democrats. Democrats tried to bring them onboard in one area after another, but they absolutely refused. To elicit bipartisanship from Republicans, Obama encouraged Dems to compromise away all the features of healthcare reform that the Nation wanted — single-payer, financed from general revenues and higher taxes on the obscenely rich — accepting one Republican amendment after another after another. After the watered-down and much-altered bill was rendered completely unacceptable to the people by Republican suckering of Democratic naifs, the Republicans voted against the resulting crappy and unconstitutional bill, and stuck the Democrats with the blame.
+
So the Republicans REFUSED to cooperate, REFUSED to be bipartisan, yet the electorate REWARDED them with 60 (or so) seats in the House. Democrats interpret that as a vote for bipartisanship? Are they insane? Answer: yes.
+
The reality is that there is, building in this country, revolutionary rage. If the Tea Party cannot achieve a damned thing once seated because the Republicans will not give them more than scraps from the table of the rich, a lot of people will give up on ballots and look to bullets. It's not the Tea Party that matters. They are boobs and rubes who have been used. Once they wake to how they were led around by the nose, they will be angry, and give up on democracy — unless we can make fundamental reforms to make democracy work.
+
Triumph of Antidemocracy. "The people have spoken" is bullsh*t. What percentage of American adults voted yesterday? That is, alas, very hard to say, in part because definitions vary, in part because that issue has not been addressed in the election analysis I have seen so far. "Voter turnout" is not the same as "eligible voter turnout". People "eligible" to vote are all adults (save, at least for a time, convicted felons). Not all people eligible to vote, voted yesterday. Not remotely. In Orlando, Florida, turnout was anticipated to be 44% of registered voters. In King County, the Seattle area of Washington had a turnout of 71% of registered voters. But ABC News points out that "registered voters" are nothing like "eligible voters".
Fifty-four percent of non-voters this year identify themselves as Democrats, compared to just 30 percent who align with Republicans, the Pew survey found. Non-voters are also overwhelmingly more likely to profess ignorance of the Tea Party than their likely voter peers. * * *

Fewer than 48 percent of eligible voters cast ballots in 2006, according to Census data compiled by McDonald. In 1994, when Republicans took control of both chambers of Congress, 48.4 percent of voters turned out at the polls. * * *

Statistics show non-voters tend to be younger, less educated, less affluent than their voting peers and more likely to be a member of a minority group
Actually, the 48% turnout figure given above is much too high. In 2006, it was 37.1%. In 2008, the Obama Presidential campaign year, turnout was 56.8%, which means that 43.2% of eligible voters did not vote, and, thus, that only a minority of eligible voters on the order of 30% — less than 1/3 — selected the President and Congress. In 1960, the year Kennedy was elected, the turnout was 63.1%, the very highest in all of recent history. That election split very evenly, so perhaps 32% of all eligible voters determined everything. That is not democracy. Assuming that the typical midterm-election turnout occurred this year, about 37%, the 'massive Republican victory' — the "sweep", the "shellacking" Obama spoke of — amounts to at most 20% of eligible voters, which is exactly the level of participation I decried here Monday.
+
The people who stay home are not, as the ABC News story points out, the same as the people who vote, so we would have different results depending on who votes. It's not like scientifically randomized polling, in which the people questioned are presumably very like the entire population. No, different kinds of people vote than stay home, and there are more people who stay home than vote. So we end up with election results that are in no way representative of the will of "the people", despite claims that "the people have spoken". No, they really have not.
+
Why do we content ourselves with an electoral system that produces absolutely unrepresentative and antidemocratic results, and saddles us with people who are NOT acceptable to the great majority of Americans? The people become more disaffected with each unrepresentative election. At some point, the Government will lose its legitimacy in the eyes of the people, and cynicism will turn to fury.
+
Barack the Faithless Strikes Again. Obama is making noises about extending the Bush tax cuts on the super-rich, even tho he has alerted us to the projection that unless taxes rise on the super-rich, the Nation will lose $700 BILLION over the next 10 years to the rich, and the national debt will thus rise by $700B. How is it "fiscally responsible" for Republicans to saddle the Nation with $700 billion more debt, just to benefit the super-rich? For Democrats to agree to this unfunded giveaway of hundreds of billions of dollars to the greedy rich would be to ensure that the budget deficit continues to grow, the economy continues to be depressed, and the Democrats will be blamed in 2012 for ever more astronomical deficits while the economy continues to underperform. Conclusion: Democrats don't mean anything they say, but are as much servants of the rich as are Republicans.
+
Will the Democrats in their "lame-duck" session pass ANYTHING the people want? Extend low taxes for the poor and middle class but refuse to extend tax cuts for the rich? Revive the estate tax? Repeal "don't ask, don't tell"? End the tax loophole that subsidizes overseas outsourcing? Cut Communist China's access to our market if it does not let its currency rise, and end all other unfair trade practices? Or will Obama cave on everything and let the free-trade, outsourcing-is-GREAT Republicans continue to subvert the economic future of the United States?
+
There is still time to use the Democrats' control of both houses of Congress and the White House to pass legislation the Nation needs. And the Republicans cannot possibly repeal those measures in the next two years because they do not control the Senate or White House.
+
A Day Late and 356 Billion Dollars Short. Something that was not in time, alas, was something I saw today on NBC Nitely News. Matt Lauer of the Today Show was granted an exclusive interview with former President George W. Bush. In a segment shown tonite, Lauer asks about the TARP "bank bailout", about which so many voters this year were indignant. Bush admitted that it was HIS Administration that came up with the plan, that he knows a lot of people are upset about it, but that it was absolutely necessary and if he had to do it all over again, he would. Why wasn't that shown BEFORE the election, so at least some fair-minded voters would be a little less angry at Obama and the Democrats? So much for "the liberal media". NBC News embargoed that part of the Lauer interview until AFTER the election. That fact will not for an instant nor to any degree, however, prevent the Radical Right from continuing to talk drivel about "liberal media bias".
+
Moreover, the Wikipedia article on TARP links to the savings and loan bailout, which cost the Nation $160.1 billion — under Dubya's father, George H.W. Bush, another Republican, 22 years ago, when $160B went a lot farther than it does today. So why are Democrats tarred with the "bailout" brush? Because neither the Democrats nor the "liberal media" reminded voters of the truth. Worse, the "bailout" and "stimulus" were confused in almost everyone's mind, and neither the Democrats nor the "liberal media" bothered to straighten things out.
+
Statehood for Puerto Rico, with the U.S. Virgin Islands. The lame-duck session dominated by Congress must move the question of Puerto Rico statehood by ending the madly misnamed "Commonwealth" status that keeps Puerto Rico poor, and forcing PR to choose statehood or independence, with no third option. If the electorate approves statehood, the U.S. Congress will have some 6 more Hispanic votes in the House and 2 in the Senate. Since Republicans anticipate that most, if not all, of those votes will be controlled by Democrats, they will not move the question if they gain the White House in 2012; and if the Democrats don't move the question now, Puerto Rican citizens of the United States will continue to suffer the second-class citizenship they have had since 1917. How can a black President smile on second-class citizenship for anyone? And how can a party supposedly devoted to equality and social justice sit on their hands and let this outrage continue?
+
If the voters of Puerto Rico (and the U.S. Virgin Islands, voting together) reject (joint) statehood, Puerto Rico should be forced into independence, and forfeit all Federal aid — which would save us $11 billion a year. Now THAT'S fiscally responsible.
+
If PR rejects statehood and is forced into independence, the Virgin Islands' status should not change unless VIslanders vote against statehood, in which case, that colony should as well be forced into independence and cut off from Federal aid — another saving to mainland taxpayers. In the alternative, the referendum legislation could provide that if the Virgin Islands is not merged into a new State of Puerto Rico, it will be merged into the next closest state, Florida. No one should have second-class citizenship in the United States. And only statehood confers first-class citizenship. Ergo, all our colonies must be converted to states or merged into existing states. Now, not in another hundred years.
+
War for Profit. Political commentator David Broder has suggested that the U.S. could solve its economic problems by making war against Iran.
Here is where Obama is likely to prevail [in seeking re-election in 2012]. With strong Republican support in Congress for challenging Iran's ambition to become a nuclear power, he can spend much of 2011 and 2012 orchestrating a showdown with the mullahs. This will help him politically because the opposition party will be urging him on. And as tensions rise and we accelerate preparations for war, the economy will improve.

I am not suggesting, of course, that the president incite a war to get reelected. But the nation will rally around Obama because Iran is the greatest threat to the world in the young century. If he can confront this threat and contain Iran's nuclear ambitions, he will have made the world safer and may be regarded as one of the most successful presidents in history.
This appalling suggestion appeared in a column in The Washington Post October 31st, but I heard of it only yesterday. Broder is Jewish. Despite his explicit denial that he is advocating war with Iran, he of course is advocating war against Iran. Two wars for Israel isn't enuf for some Zionists. They want three — by the U.S., of course, not by Israel. Israel can't fite three wars against Islam, but is eager to fite Islam to the last American. Israel was essentially defeated in its last war against the Moslem world, its occupation of Lebanon. So it sees its security dependent upon its absolute control of the United States. Will Obama have the guts to refuse Radical-Zionist demands he take on yet a third war against Moslem countries? How could any such THIRD war NOT be seen as a clear statement that the U.S. is indeed at war against Islam itself?
+
"I am not suggesting, of course, that the president incite a war to get reelected." Yes you are. Your denial fools no one. And your war would be not for "the world" but for Israel. Alas, you might fool some people about that.
+
Yesterday's election, after all, proved H.L. Mencken's famous truism: "No one ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public."
+
(The current U.S. military death toll in Iraq, according to the website "Iraq Coalition Casualties", is 4,427 — for Israel.)



Links to this post:

Create a Link



<< Home

Powered by Blogger