It Will Feel So Good When We Stop (Victorious…)

Alright.  I’ve given up.  I’m actually counting the hours:  setting midnight Monday as the cut-off point for the campaign, as of this writing we’ve got roughly 59 hours to go.

Here’s the schedule for this household:  Tomorrow, I head up to NH to pound the hills and dales there for Obama and some very good local Democrats (gubernatorial candidate  Maggie Hassan and House challengers Annie Kuster and Carole Shea-Porter) while at home the spousal unit hosts a calling party for OFA.  Monday, real life intervenes for me, but my wife will canvass for Elizabeth Warren in the morning — and on Tuesday we’ve worked out the logistics to enable both of us to truck back up north.  We’ll spend the whole day with those of our friends in the Granite State who will be (I’m very reliably informed) exceptionally happy to say good-bye to us for the next three and a half years or so.

I gotta confess:  at this point, it’s as much about therapy as it is about any actual effect from my efforts.  I’m so wound up on this one that just the act of doing something has become a necessity; no sleep otherwise, and too many hours reflexively bouncing from electoral map to electoral map.  Any screen will do.  Cut me off from the computer and I just smear sweat and index finger prints all over the phone and so on ad infinitum.  (O brave new world that has such gadgets in’t.)

But whatever your motivation, let me add to the constant theme of this site.  You know the drill: it’s an existential election.  As Schlemizel pointed out a thread or two ago,this was just a trial run for Citizens United. The .01% will get better at it, which means this could be the last time for a while that we get to try this democracy thing — unless the next Obama selected Supreme or two shifts the balance when another challenge comes up.  All the other stuff too — no need, I think, to repeat all the reasons this election matters; we’ve all hammered on that theme for lo these many months.  If you’ve got the time and wherewithal, get out the vote; protect the vote.  If all you can do in the press of real life is send good thoughts, then do that too.  Whatever we can contribute now, we gotta — or to steal from my favorite dead deaf guy, Muss es sein? Es muss sein.

And with that, I’m going to let my degenerate election junky out to play, and enlist a little hive-mind help:  I’m desperate to convince myself that we do in fact possess the advantage all the data seem to suggest we do, and so I studied up on today’s Daily Kos report on candidate schedules today.

The good guys are winning the logistical battle, at least — our candidates and top surrogates have fifteen events on the slate today against eight for the R-Money boys.  (Five of those are Jill Biden stops at Obama/Biden field offices in PA and OH, but even if those are less significant than rallies, our folks are still out-representing theirs by a notable margin.)

The itineraries also seem to suggest that the GOPers perceive the same need that the Nate Silvers of the world have pointed out:  they are still propping up states that don’t propel them to 270.

But what caught my eye, beyond what appears to me to be a frantic GOP effort to play defense, is that  four out of the eight Republican events are slated for airports, which makes sense from a logistics point of view, I guess.  But none of those on the Democratic side do — every one of them is a rally at some place that actually sits in the middle of a community — schools, businesses, colleges and the like.

So here’s my question for y’all:  What do you make of those two schedules.  Is the GOP public effort today as weak as it appears to me?  For those of you who are deeper in the weeds in political practice than I ever hope to be (looking at you, Kay, in awe) see all those airport stops and say “weak sauce?”

I know; I know.  This is as pitiful a cry for reassurance as one will see.

58.5 hours, boyz and girlz.  Let’s make them count.

PS: Just as I was getting ready to post this, my beloved, if twisted, spouse called to share a nugget gleaned from the radio.  Someone talker has compared the task of quashing a Twitter rumor to trying to “stuff an angry cat into a condom.”

It’s a perfect description of many of the operations we attempt here in our happy internet playpen, is it not.

And as for the image itself:  too true.  I have the scars from this week’s vet-trip mandated transition into a cat carrier to prove it.  Right, Tikka?

William Hogarth, An Election Entertainment, from the Humours of an Election series, 1755.

William Hogarth, Soliciting Votes, frpppp

183 replies
  1. 1
    arguingwithsignposts says:

    What do you make of those two schedules. Is the GOP public effort today as weak as it appears to me?

    Airport stops: the campaign equivalent of mailing it in.

  2. 2
    lamh35 says:

    Plz share with ur friends of caucasian persuasion.

    Chris Rock – Message for White Voters: http://youtu.be/EDxOSjgl5Z4

  3. 3
    Yutsano says:

    Tikka sez: U r falling down on the petting duties hairless ape.

    I’m in fatalist mode. I never underestimate the stupidity of the American people, yet I’m also being cautiously optimistic. Which is very strange for me.

  4. 4
    lamh35 says:

    By going into connunities and speaking at HS, the Obama campaign s going stragiht to the people who they need to hear their message. The Romney camp airport strategy will just be speaking to choir.

    Obama get’s both local tv and newspaper coverage and word of mouth coverage from locals, plus since they are already out for the rally, then most people will probably just make it a twofer, rally then vote or vis versa, vote then rally.

  5. 5
    Shakespeare says:

    Your cat looks like Henri, the Existential Cat. Quelle horreur!

  6. 6
    Elizabelle says:

    Staying near the plane. The closest Romney will ever get to Bono. U2 chartered what’s now the Romney plane previously.

    Rallies at the airport. Proves you ain’t a rock star.

  7. 7
    PsiFighter37 says:

    Finished knocking on my first round of doors in Dayton – going back out for Round 2 now.

  8. 8
    lamh35 says:

    Also, just had to share this twitpic

    Cutest Halloween Costume Evah
    https://twitter.com/TheObamaDiary/status/264773766859603968/photo/1/large

    BTW, I check out the “gray” in the kid’s hair…lol

  9. 9
    waratah says:

    I was hoping that CU would not use that money for GOTV.
    We may be lucky they decided to line their pockets this time.

  10. 10
    Mark S. says:

    I’m in a red state where the outcome is a foregone conclusion, but I think I’ve seen more McCain/Palin bumper stickers that people never got around to taking off than I have Romney/Ryan ones. Shit, I’m not sure I’ve seen one Romney/Ryan sticker.

  11. 11
    hildebrand says:

    Rereading ‘Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail ’72’. Thought it would be a helpful way to bleed off energy over the weekend.

    I have spent the last few weeks doing a good bit of GOTV with students. Most frustrating down in here in Deep South Texas is how apathetic most of the people are regarding national elections. And frankly, our politicians down here really don’t seem to mind the low turnout. They certainly don’t work very hard to get people to the polls. Gah, no wonder the rest of the state can ignore us completely.

  12. 12
    Roger Moore says:

    @lamh35:
    That’s good. It just occurred to me the other day that the only white guy I’ll be voting for will be Joe Biden. I’m voting for black men for President and State Assembly, a white woman for US Senate, Chinese-American women for House and State Senate, and a black woman for District Attorney. It’s a pretty diverse ticket we’ve got here in Blue California.

  13. 13
    Violet says:

    What a gorgeous kitty! Love the glare-y look at you. Not happy about that vet trip.

    I wish I could help this weekend, but I’ve been sick for the better part of the week. Yesterday I managed to get to the grocery store for some much needed supplies and that tired me out so much I had to force myself to put cool items in the fridge when I got home and not just head straight for the sofa again.

    I seem to be on the way to losing my voice, and the sore throat means it hurts to talk, so I’m just going to hope everyone else has it covered.

    I have noticed that the majority of national news seems to be focused on Sandy recovery, with an obligatory campaign mention interspersed. I guess when the media centers are the ones that were hit, that’s what’s going to happen, but it’s still an interesting phenomenon.

  14. 14
    RaflW says:

    @arguingwithsignposts:
    Well, the TV morans will still give Ryan air time for stopping at the Minneapolis airport (in the middle of a Vikings game, there’s some planning). A few local reporters were already twatting last night that this *must* mean MN is in play. Hah.

    Will a fly-in matter to Minnesota voters? It seems like weak sauce. But I didn’t go see Bill Clinton on the U of M campus the other day, or Jill Biden’s recent visit. It’s not my thing, though I’m an Obot for sure.

    But media coverage may matter a smidge. But not the margin of victory in MN. I don’t buy the ‘leans Obama’ markings of some poll maps.

  15. 15
    RSA says:

    all those airport stops

    It reminds me of a whistle stop tour, which appropriately enough died out in the 1950s. Tradition!

  16. 16
    Speculum Spatula says:

    This emo post once again confirms that for most political fans/junkie/obsessives such as the front pagers on this blog, politics is nothing more than what sports are to millions of fans: A diversion/hobby/obsession that lends meaning to their lives and allows them to feel they are part of something bigger than themselves, even if the reality is that their “involvement” makes no difference at all to the teams on the field.

    Given Levenson’s apparent employment at MIT however, the post also proves that even those with large brains easily succumb to irrational, emo tribalism.

    Fascinating, really.

  17. 17
    Carnacki says:

    That cat is one bad mother-
    Shut your mouth!
    I’m just talkin’ about Tikka.

  18. 18
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    So here’s my question for y’all: What do you make of those two schedules. Is the GOP public effort today as weak as it appears to me? For those of you who are deeper in the weeds in political practice than I ever hope to be (looking at you, Kay, in awe) see all those airport stops and say “weak sauce?”

    Motherfuckers had me convinced Kerry was winning in 2004. Since then, I just assume the bad guys have the advantage somehow and let myself be surprised if that’s not the case.

  19. 19
    Speculum Spatula says:

    @Roger Moore:

    RACIST

  20. 20
    Roger Moore says:

    @waratah:

    I was hoping that CU would not use that money for GOTV.

    There’s less they can do as far as GOTV. The point of Citizens United is that it was a free speech decision; we can’t pass laws restricting independent spending on campaign advertising because it’s free speech. GOTV stuff isn’t the same kind of protected activity, so it’s much easier to regulate.

  21. 21
    guachi says:

    The VA stop is now 10:35 PM! It was 7 PM before. Or, rather, it was “doors open” at 7 PM.

    I have my free ticket. Yay!!! Still going, and all, but it’s going to be COLD as it’s a partially outdoor arena.

  22. 22
    RaflW says:

    Overall, what I get the sense of, reading the three most recent BJ FPs is that the GOP has indeed succumbed to their epistemic closure + the standard GOP operative’s grift.

    They’ve got a crap ground game. They think all the fundamentals should have elected Mitt so they didn’t game out other plans. They thought giving $100M to Rove would equal $100M of impact, but they forgot about the skim they all charge each other, so HaHa Rove x $100m = $12.5m impact.

    The race will be close. And I have no great sense of how US House races or especially stale legislative races will pan out. The next version of ALEC (which will manage to be even less visible/traceable than ALEC)
    is no doubt already mobilizing to destroy democracy one state-house at a time.

    But an Obama win based on the failures of conservatives to execute a real electoral game will help blunt the terrible. For a while…

  23. 23
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @lamh35: “Chris Rock the Vote”

    I wonder how many years he’s been waiting for that one. :)

    I was wondering how long it would take for somebody to point out how incredibly middle-aged white guy that home brewing stuff was. Good thing we have comedians.

  24. 24
    RaflW says:

    @That dickhead Spatula:

    Yeah, Tom said he was staying home, making no personal effort and was cheering from his Barkalounger while +3 or whatever.

    Jackass.

  25. 25
    Violet says:

    @hildebrand:

    Most frustrating down in here in Deep South Texas is how apathetic most of the people are regarding national elections. And frankly, our politicians down here really don’t seem to mind the low turnout. They certainly don’t work very hard to get people to the polls. Gah, no wonder the rest of the state can ignore us completely.

    Deep South Texas has a lot of Latinos that could, should they decide they want to, become an important group in state and national politics. Just have to get organized.

    Republicans have zero interest in Latinos organizing if they’re going to vote for Democrats. The Texas Democratic party is not in great shape, so not a lot of help there.

    Stupid Texas Democrats. They’re sitting on a potential goldmine of voters, but can’t seem to get themselves organized enough to do the ground work to build the party again.

  26. 26
    ding dong says:

    I’m gonna start crying like that little girl cuz I’m tired of bronco bama and meat robme too.

  27. 27
    Speculum Spatula says:

    @Just Some Fuckhead:

    Motherfuckers had me convinced Kerry was winning in 2004. Since then, I just assume the bad guys have the advantage somehow and let myself be surprised if that’s not the case.

    Kerry WAS winning in 2004; in face he DID win. Exit polling, always very reliable, proved it.

    But the republicans stole their second election and Dems let it happen.

  28. 28
    dmsilev says:

    Did that calculation incorporate the extra hour due to the Daylights Savings switch tonight?

    (Sorry)

  29. 29
    Svensker says:

    @lamh35:

    I looooooove that. Anyone you know?

  30. 30
    CarolDuhart2 says:

    @waratah: GOTV doesn’t provide enough opportunities to line pockets. Why? a lot of it has to go to infrastructure such as offices and materials and phones and paid employees. Commercials provide opportunities for “consulting fees” and other kickbacks, not to mention buying ad space on the lousiest times for one price and telling the donors it costs another price, and pocketing the difference. And hardly any staff is needed, and you can use offices already in use.

  31. 31
    Speculum Spatula says:

    @RaflW:

    Hey dicktwit, you might want to respond to something that was actually written.

    Levenson’s going door to door annoying people or interrupting their privacy with a phone call is the political version of going to the stadium, buying lots of fan paraphanelia, eating junk food, and yelling really loud in the ear of the fan in front of you; or alternatively staying at home and yelling/stomping on the floor and annoying your neighbors.

    Either way it makes no difference to the outcome.

  32. 32
    elftx says:

    Good luck on your canvassing !

    also too…you need to post that pic of Tikka on Reddit under the heading of “go ahead, make my day”

  33. 33
    Spaghetti Lee says:

    @Speculum Spatula:

    Dang, who pissed in your cheerios this morning?

  34. 34
    Svensker says:

    @Violet: Violet, I have the same cold that has attacked my voice. Been on the couch for most of a week, lost my voice entirely for a few days, still sound like a refugee from a throat cancer camp, and still feel like roadkill. When will it end?

    And now the spousal unit seems to be coming down with it. Oh joy.

  35. 35
    RaflW says:

    Uh oh. Perennial worrywarts at TNR call Obama’s travel schedule defensive.

    I really just shouldn’t bother with these wimps.

  36. 36
    danielx says:

    Second picture above: definition of “a baleful look”.

  37. 37
    Chris says:

    You know the drill: it’s an existential election.

    What’s exhausting is that EVERY election for the last three decades has been existential, and the ones in the foreseeable future will be as well. 2008 was existential – imagine how fucked up the economy would’ve been after another four years of Bush. 1980 and 2000 were existential, ushering in two catastrophic presidencies.

    I can handle an existential election every now and then (like 1964 in the midst of all the “liberal consensus” elections), but when it looks like my entire life is going to be filled with them, yeeccchhh.

  38. 38
    Roger Moore says:

    @Spaghetti Lee:

    Dang, who pissed in your cheerios this morning?

    I think he peed in his own cheerios, but then decided to blame it on somebody else; it’s the Republican way.

  39. 39
    waratah says:

    @Roger Moore: Thank you I did not know that.

  40. 40
    dmsilev says:

    Well, it looks like the Romney campaign has reverted back to their chasing shiny objects tendencies, which is probably a good sign.

  41. 41
    lamh35 says:

    @Svensker: no one I know, just a retweet I wanted to share. it was too cute

  42. 42
    The Dangerman says:

    …unless the next Obama selected Supreme or two shifts the balance when another challenge comes up.

    I could see Citizens United going down somehow; I think even the Right is appalled by how this bastardized the system. At some level, CU gave them Romney (although it’s not like they had a lot from which to choose). Romney is going to deliver them a beatdown; recall, the Left doesn’t come out to vote if they think victory is assured and the Right doesn’t come out to vote if they think defeat is assured. There could be some serious surprises Tuesday. Not enough to flip the House, but there will be some shockers.

    It may take an Amendment, but perhaps we can go 2 for 1 and get rid of the 22nd. Obama’s still a young enough man ;-)

  43. 43
    gene108 says:

    unless the next Obama selected Supreme or two shifts the balance when another challenge comes up.

    Thinking about the Supreme Court makes me sad.

    No liberal shift will happen, if (when) Obama is re-elected.

    Roberts and Alito are young.

    Scalia’s 76 and will cling onto his seat until a Republican is President to replace him (or he gets hit by a bus).

    Thomas is only in his mid-60’s and can hold out for another 15-20 years, given the miracles of modern medicine.

    Kennedy’s about the same age as Scalia.

    Obama can only hope to maintain the 5-4 balance and allow Ginsburg to retire.

    It’s going to be 2020 or 2024 before we can really hope to flip the court.

    It’s sad, but I don’t see Scalia, Kennedy or Thomas voluntarily resigning until they are on death’s door or a Republican is President (or one of them gets hit by a bus) and it’d probably be another 8 to 12 years before they get old enough to bite the bucket naturally (stinkin’ Supreme’s and their government run healthcare…where are the death panels, when you need them?).

  44. 44
    lamh35 says:

    Hmmm, so even when trying to “cook da books” Chuckie T still can’t get his boy Mitt ahead of POTUS in Ohio

    Chuck Todd ‏@chucktodd
    On our OH poll, w/ Obama up 51-45, we ran results with a tighter party ID split (avg of 04 and 08 elections) and it came out 50-47 Obama

  45. 45
    Tara the Antisocial Social Worker says:

    N discussion of Republicans and airports is complete without a Larry Craig reference.

  46. 46
    arguingwithsignposts says:

    @gene108:

    Roberts and Alito are young.
    Scalia’s 76 and will cling onto his seat until a Republican is President to replace him (or he gets hit by a bus).
    Thomas is only in his mid-60’s and can hold out for another 15-20 years, given the miracles of modern medicine.
    Kennedy’s about the same age as Scalia.

    Shit happens.

  47. 47
    Tom Levenson says:

    @Speculum Spatula: I usually wouldn’t rouse myself to reply to someone who’s clearly having a bad day, but I have to ask. What is it about my day-job that gets people so riled up. Wingnuts on Twitter huff a lot about it on those fairly rare occasions when they wander onto my feed.

    I mean, it’s not as if I’m trying to make an argument from authority. No mention of my employer in the post above, for example, and as for the rare occasions when I do let it slip, it’s in the context of identifying a possible interest — as in when I’m interviewing someone from own institution on the webcasts I sometimes promote here.

    Does it just gall you that I’ve got an admittedly very satisfying job?

    Oh — and I’m glad you think canvassing is such a waste of time. I’ve got break something to you: the campaigns, both of them, disagree.

    Wanker.

  48. 48
    ellie says:

    Kitty looks upset!

    I volunteered to GOTV on Tuesday here in CO. Should be interesting. I did it last time when I lived in Ohio and a three-hour shift morphed into a nine-hour day but it was worth it.

  49. 49
    PurpleGirl says:

    I was talking with a cashier at my grocery store and she asked “if it was true that Romney had said he’d end FEMA”. I said “yes”. She said “why”. I told her that he believed more in private charity and letting companies make more money. She screwed up her eyes and said but the problems are so big. So I said “Well, you know who to vote for on Tuesday”. “Yes, Obama”. I told her “I voted for him before and I will vote for him again”. And she shook her head “Yes”.

    Me: middle aged white lady; she: 30s Caribbean Black.

  50. 50
    lane says:

    I want your wife. Mine will be feisty and howl a lot, however I think there could be a happy medium.

  51. 51
    Roger Moore says:

    @Chris:
    I’m hoping that 2016 will be a bit easier than 2012 has been. We’ll have another 4 years of demographic change, and if things run to expectations we’ll also have a functioning economy that the Democrats can take credit for. The really tough election will be 2014, which will be both a mid-term election and have a bunch of improbable 2008 Senate pick-ups to defend.

  52. 52
    Violet says:

    @Svensker: Sorry you’ve got it too. It really sucks. It hasn’t been that bad of a cold but it has just knocked me out. I have some congestion, but not that bad. Mostly just annoying. But my energy is nonexistent and now my voice is going. Ugh.

  53. 53
    JPL says:

    @Speculum Spatula: There are two reasons why door to door helps. It reminds people of the importance of the vote and it might answer concerns an undecided voter has. A friend went door to door for Warren and several still had questions about particular stands.
    President Obama is way ahead among registered voters.

  54. 54
    Raven says:

    @Roger Moore: Nothing is going to be easy, ever.

  55. 55
    arguingwithsignposts says:

    @Tom Levenson: Forget it Tom, it’s Spats – he shits on everything here.

  56. 56
    quannlace says:

    I really just shouldn’t bother with these wimps.

    You had it easy. I made the mistake of taking a look at The Daily Caller. Wanted to see if they mentioned that bogus story making the rounds, of out of state utility workers coming in to NJ to help were turned away by ‘union thugs’ cause they don’t belong to their union. It’s already been revealed to be a lie, but there it is, Front page center on Carlson’s crap-fest site. Oh, and loved the article on how Hurricane Sandy confirms conservatism. (????)

  57. 57
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Tom Levenson: Have you ever known of that dude to post in any way consistent with having ever once had a good day?

  58. 58
    IowaOldLady says:

    I know the site doesn’t control the ads that pop up, but every time I come here, I see one telling me to vote against retaining Iowa Supreme Court judge Wiggins, who was part of the court that voted unanimously that banning same sex marriage was unconstitutional and thus legalized it here nearly three years ago now.

    In Iowa, Supreme Court judge are appointed by the governor and then after a few years, voters say whether to retain them. In 2010, Bob Vanderplaatz (R-Looneytown) campaigned to have three of those judges turned out, and he succeeded. Now it’s Wiggins’ turn. It’s like Vanderplaatz and his ilk can’t accept they lost and are throwing a years long temper tantrum.

    Too bad for him I already voted for retention.

  59. 59
    Roger Moore says:

    @Tom Levenson:

    Does it just gall you that I’ve got an admittedly very satisfying job?

    I think it galls any Conservative when people make arguments based on facts and evidence and stuff. Their best hope is to point out that you’re an ivory tower elitist university professor in the hopes it will make people ignore you.

  60. 60
    JPL says:

    @Just Some Fuckhead: The results of the 2004 election depressed me for weeks. I knew our country couldn’t afford four more years of Bush. I feel the same level of desperation now.
    Thanks to all the GOTV folks for your hard work.

  61. 61
    JPL says:

    @IowaOldLady: Most ads have an x on them which allows you to forever delete them.

    edit .. I use google chrome so maybe it is different for you

  62. 62
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @Violet: Stupid Texas Democrats. They’re sitting on a potential goldmine of voters, but can’t seem to get themselves organized enough to do the ground work to build the party again.

    Maybe the Latinos should organize their own party/affiliation group and start by taking over small, local offices where door pounding and registration campaigns can make a big difference.

    Kind of like the Democratic Freedom Party campaign in Mississippi in the 1960s.

    Hispanic activists in Florida seem to get what it takes to become a powerful voting bloc. We could see an eruption of such tactics in Tejas in the next few years.

  63. 63
    Meg says:

    Romney is old and tired. He does not want to drive around in towns to places. He wants to be able to retreat to his private jet as soon as the events end.

  64. 64
    IowaOldLady says:

    @JPL: I don’t see it with IE. OMG, that would make my life so much better. Let me go see what I can do about that. Thank you!

  65. 65
    Speculum Spatula says:

    @Tom Levenson:

    I mean, it’s not as if I’m trying to make an argument from authority. No mention of my employer in the post above, for example, and as for the rare occasions when I do let it slip, it’s in the context of identifying a possible interest—as in when I’m interviewing someone from own institution on the webcasts I sometimes promote here.

    Nothing negative was implied regarding your MIT position. Quite the opposite: I clearly implied that I think you must be pretty smart to be there.

    Which makes your fanboy view of politics all the more interesting. Though it’s probably just a geek thing. Lots of people are very smart in particular areas, but otherwise naive.

    I live over in Jamaica Plain, and I played King Lear with your MIT Shakespeare Ensemble two years ago. I know MIT fairly well.

    ETA: Why so defensive about you MIT position? Again, considering there is nothing in my comment implying that it’s a bad thing. Interesting too.

  66. 66
    Poopyman says:

    @IowaOldLady: @JPL: I never knew about that either, but it exists in Explorer 9, so thanks JPL!

  67. 67
    Roger Moore says:

    @Raven:
    I didn’t say it would be easy, I said it might be easier than this year. We’ve been running into a headwind with the economy this year, and I’m hoping that will be less of an issue in 2016. We’ll still be fighting Republican stupidity and intransigence, but at least we may be fighting it with the economy on our side.

  68. 68
    Speculum Spatula says:

    @Roger Moore:

    I think it galls any Conservative when people make arguments based on facts and evidence and stuff.

    You’re an idiot.

    I’m one of the few actual Liberals who read and post here. Of course it pleases you to pretend otherwise, so carry on…

  69. 69
    JGabriel says:

    __
    __
    Tom Levenson @ Top:

    As Schlemizel pointed out a thread or two ago,this was just a trial run for Citizens United. The .01% will get better at it …

    Maybe, maybe not. The .01% of the right is supremely confident, to the point of arrogance, in their own holy ability to choose the right course without any advice, input, or data from others. They are the chosen. Their wealth proves it.

    So, yes, maybe rich conservatives will get better at using their vast wealth to influence (read: buy) elections. But I’m not entirely convinced of their ability to learn from their mistakes and experience:

    A) they don’t make mistakes, they are the chosen, etc., etc.;

    B) they are more likely to believe they lost something because it was stolen from them, rather than through their own mistakes.

    I suspect that the only lesson that billionaire conservatives will take from losing this election cycle — the only lesson they can take from it due to their experiential deficiencies — is that they must learn not how to use their wealth more effectively, but how to use that wealth to cheat better.

    So I doubt there will be much improvement next cycle. After all, given their already profligate skills in cheating, there really can’t be much room for left improvement anymore.

    .

  70. 70
    kerFuFFler says:

    Have you all seen the video at a Romney rally where the crowd shouts down someone asking about climate change by chanting, “USA,USA, USA…….”?

    History will not treat Romney’s candidacy kindly…..

  71. 71
    Tom Levenson says:

    @Speculum Spatula: OK. I’ll take the compliment. Thanks.

    This, however is nonsense:

    Which makes your fanboy view of politics all the more interesting.

    Case of fitting whatever you perceive in the outside world to your pre-existing need template.

    [ETA that I have no idea about your (or really anyone’s) motivation.]

  72. 72
    JPL says:

    @IowaOldLady: Try this.. On John’s site I allow ads because I know that is a benefit to him… http://adblockplus.org/en/

    google chrome has a little arrow in the top right of the ad that allows you to change ads.

    you can allow ads after tuesday..

  73. 73
    PurpleGirl says:

    @lamh35: Oh, they are cute. Whoever thought of it, had a great idea.

  74. 74
    Mark S. says:

    If you want a good laugh, go read Michael Barone’s election predictions. It’s only slightly more rational than the unskewed polls guy.

    Doug might enjoy the analysis since it has Northern Virginia Asians and Nevada Filipinos. Even I get tired of soccer moms and NASCAR dads.

  75. 75
    Speculum Spatula says:

    @Tom Levenson:

    Oh, probably so…but hell, everyone else here does it. ;D

  76. 76
    JPL says:

    @Raven: Have fun at the game. Go DAWGS!

  77. 77
    Chris says:

    @Roger Moore:

    Economy and demographics.

    My inner negative person wants to point out that the most successful economy since the sixties didn’t prevent Bush from winning in 2000 (granted, with some help from election-stealing “Chicago style politics”). But the country was also a lot whiter back then and the religious right wave hadn’t crested yet. Country’s more favorable to us now, and it’ll probably be even more so in 2016 if we can hold it until then.

    What I meant, though, is it’ll still be “existential” in the sense that Republicans will continue to put people on the ticket who would absolutely fucking ruin the country if elected.

  78. 78
    Tom Levenson says:

    @Speculum Spatula: And with that, peace returns to the valley. ;)

  79. 79
    SteveinMD says:

    Just got back from canvassing in northern Virginia. We met at the Democratic Party HQ in DC to get our instructions, and there were a ton of people there, many with overnight bags. I can definitely believe the CW that Obama’s GOTV effort is better than Romney’s.

  80. 80
    IowaOldLady says:

    @JPL: And thank you again!

  81. 81
    Chris says:

    @SteveinMD:

    I can definitely believe the CW that Obama’s GOTV effort is better than Romney’s.

    The GOP seems to’ve gone all-in on voter suppression as their way of winning this election cycle – minimizing rather than maximizing the number of votes.

  82. 82
    Tom Q says:

    @Roger Moore: The upside is, the economy is very likely to have improved enough by 2014 that it won’t be nearly the negative it was in 2010 (much as ’98 was, by most standards, spectacularly positive for Dems, after grisly ’94). I grant some of the Senate pickups from ’08 will be tough to defend (Begich, above all), but others, like Franken and Merkley, will probably be easier as incumbents than they were as challengers.

    Alot of course will depend on the Congressional outcome Tuesday. There’s a big difference between Dems holding at 52-53 Senate seats and expanding to 55+ — the latter would make control post-’14 much more likely. And we really have no idea what the House situation will be. People appear to have bought into the “GOP holds House regardless” scenario, but a swing of ten seats in the prediction would change that, and such a margin of error isn’t all that unlikely after the last three House outcomes.

  83. 83
    becca says:

    Anyone try to read the WaPo editorial blasting Romney? I’ve tried every whichway to read it again and the page keeps coming up “not found”.

  84. 84
    Seanly says:

    The gym was a bit depressing today. Fox News playing in the locker room instead of the usual ESPN. When I finished, the TV was at least back to ESPN, but I overheard two older guys talking about the election. The older one didn’t care for Romney, but was hoping he could “stop the slide”

    My wife has a CAT scan early Tuesday. She’s still on 6 month scans after battling Hodgkin’s Lymphoma over 2 years ago. We hope to vote early in the day. I’m wasting my Saturday trying to get caught up on at least 2 of the 4 different bridge projects I am working on right now.

    We know Obama doesn’t stand much of a chance to carry our latest port of call – Idaho. We see far more Obama stickers than Romney ones even with the large LDS presence here in Boise. ALso, we’ve got Democratic candidates to vote into office and 3 terrible anti-union/school killing props to defeat.

  85. 85
    Matthew Reid Krell says:

    @Speculum Spatula: The literature is relatively clear; GOTV increases turnout. The efficacy of verious activities is disputed, although relative efficacy is known:

    Personal contact is the best (roughly a 20% increase in likelihood to vote).

    Then phone (roughly 10%)

    Then lit drops and mail (less than 5%). So, if 5% of the doors you knock on AS A CAMPAIGN (assuming a 25% response rate, which is usual in canvassing) is enough to swing the election, canvassing is a good ROI that you should steer volunteers toward. If not, then yes, maybe it’s a waste of time.

  86. 86
    Yutsano says:

    Yes, it’s HufflePuff, but this is AWESOME!!

  87. 87
    Seanly says:

    @Speculum Spatula:

    Shorter Spatula: GOTV, how the fugg does it work?

  88. 88
    SuzieC says:

    Here’s another little tidbit that may help–here in a very blue neighborhood in very blue Columbus, Ohio, canvassing was actually called off. Every door has been knocked on and almost everyone has already voted.

  89. 89
    MikeJ says:

    Finally got a chance to start Silver’s book. Thank gopod he’s good at math because he’s not much of a writer.

  90. 90
    gene108 says:

    @PurpleGirl:

    I work with people, who will vote for Romney, but believe the Republicans won’t do what they say they are going to do, like screw FEMA into the ground (which every Republican Admin has done), end Social Security and Medicare as we know it and make abortion illegal.

  91. 91
    nancydarling says:

    @Speculum Spatula: This may be the biggest crock of shit I will read all day.

  92. 92
    MikeJ says:

    @IowaOldLady: Don’t kill the ad, click on it. Take money away from evil people and give it to the (semi) good (Cole).

  93. 93
    Svensker says:

    @Violet:

    That’s exactly it. Not REALLY a bad cold, just no voice and no energy. Today (Day 8) I did some small weights and had to stop after 10 reps because I was so exhausted. It’s depressing as hell.

  94. 94
    PsiFighter37 says:

    Done with round 2. Apartment buildings are a bitch – oftentimes you can’t get in.

    That said, gotten 15 or so peeps voting for the president, with a few converts for Brown from undecided.

    Lunch break, then time for the afternoon/evening shift.

  95. 95
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    @lamh35: “Third-whitest name on the planet”–reminds me of an ollllllld Allan Sherman ditty:

    We’ll–call–him–
    Barry, Barry,
    That’ll be the baby’s name

    We thought of Lance or Josh,
    but omigosh,
    it’s not–the–same.

    But if it’s Barry, Barry,
    That’s a name with style & grace.
    And if he’s not a he,
    It still can be
    As in Barrie Chase

    & I remember saying to myself when I first heard this, at age 11 or 12, Who the heck is Barrie Chase? & wondering for a week or so until my next trip to the local library & asked a librarian to look it up for me. Now it’s a coupla clix. Ain’t tech wunnerful?

    (But tech ain’t everything. Good luck figuring out which song he stole the music from for this–you know it’s something that would’ve been familiar 50 years ago, but…good luck.)

  96. 96
    gene108 says:

    @Seanly:

    The older one didn’t care for Romney, but was hoping he could “stop the slide”

    This is the true genius behind the Republican obstructionist strategy.

    Make things so bad and hinder recovery efforts to the point that even people, who generally like Obama, will vote for Romney because they feel change is needed and we aren’t going in the right direction.

  97. 97
    IowaOldLady says:

    @MikeJ: Oh. Maybe teaching the bastards a lesson is even better than not seeing the ad?

    I’m going to try clicking on it and seeing what happens. If I get an avalanche of bigoted crap, I’m blaming you, MikeJ.

  98. 98
    Hill Dweller says:

    @gene108: I know people like that. Ask them why Republicans voted to turn Medicare into a voucher program when they knew it would never pass the Senate. There was no political benefit for making that vote, but the wingnuts still did it.

    FEMA sucked under the Bush family because they contracted out all of the essential duties to political cronies. That’s the Republican way, and Willard will be no different.

    They’re serious as a heart attack about destroying the social contract. Anyone that doesn’t understand that by now is either stupid or driven by tribalism.

  99. 99
    Ann Rynd says:

    @Uncle Cosmo: I must be very old because I knew exactly who Barrie Chase was without clicking.

  100. 100
    Tom Q says:

    @Uncle Cosmo: I had the same issue with the Allan Sherman song; had to ask my parents who the hell Barrie Chase was. It’s not as if she was a household name, ever (though I seem to recall she appeared on a Fred Astaire TV special not long after).

    As for the Cohan source…don’t people still watch Yankee Doodle Dandy? That’d get them familiar with it.

  101. 101
    Speculum Spatula says:

    @nancydarling:

    This may be the biggest crock of shit I will read all day.

    Well then, you don’t read much, my friend. :D

  102. 102
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    @Tom Q:

    People appear to have bought into the “GOP holds House regardless” scenario, but a swing of ten seats in the prediction would change that, and such a margin of error isn’t all that unlikely after the last three House outcomes.

    Redistricting. It’s not good to lose an election with a zero at the end. I was just reading about how a new state leg. district map cuts a college campus in half, and the on-campus students, who were previously registered under the central mailing address, now have to work out which district covers their dorm room.

    @lamh35:

    so even when trying to “cook da books” Chuckie T still can’t get his boy Mitt ahead of POTUS in Ohio

    It’s a pretty sad reflection on what happens when a decentish number-cruncher gets promoted into the Village aristocracy. He’s taking the last scintilla of credibility he had left and shitting all over it.

  103. 103
    Kathleen says:

    I saw a very long line of people waiting for the BOE to open this morning in Cincinnati. A young African American woman stood across the street holding up a sign that said, “Stop Disrespecting My President”. I wish more people could see that sign. I thought if it were a tea party rally the local media would be all over it, but I didn’t see one media truck out there to report on the last weekend of early voting. Perhaps they will show up later. Or not.

  104. 104
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    @RSA: Dog whistle stop for the R$/rAyn ticket.

  105. 105
    mamayaga says:

    @PsiFighter37: So grateful people like you and Tom are able to do this.

  106. 106
    Steeplejack says:

    @becca:

    Are you talking about this one: “Mitt Romney’s Campaign Insults Voters”?

  107. 107
    gene108 says:

    @Another Halocene Human:

    I think one point people don’t realize is how much the Democratic brand got trashed in the South thanks to Ken Starr’s endless witch-hunt of President Clinton and then various Karl Rove/Bush, Jr. tactics.

    In the 1990’s and early 2000’s Texas, Alabama, Louisiana, Georgia, South Carolina, Tennessee and other now solidly one-party Republican states had Democrats holding statewide offices.

    After voters got turned off by their state Democratic office holders, for whatever reason, the fund raising ability of the statewide Democratic parties fell apart and you quickly ended up with one-party Republican rule.

    I don’t know what’s needed to jump start those statewide Democratic parties again, but they really are weak and aren’t doing much to try to change things.

  108. 108
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @PsiFighter37: Good work, PsiFighter.

    I was lucky enough to canvass in a ‘hood that was a mixture of Black retirees and young white grad students. Did have one lady claim she wasn’t registered. I think she was just suspicious, and I don’t blame her.

  109. 109
    PurpleGirl says:

    @lamh35: Chris Rock – Message for White Voters

    Thank you for this. It is very funny and I was laughing out loud.

  110. 110
    handsmile says:

    @becca:

    I hope this link helps:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/.....ml?hpid=z2

    First paragraph of the editorial: “Mitt Romney’s campaign insults voters”:

    “Through all the flip-flops, there has been one consistency in the campaign of Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney: a contempt for the electorate.”

    And it goes on like that, with only the briefest reflexive editorial tic that ‘both sides do it.” Absolutely astounding to read something this shrill from Kaplan Test Prep Daily’s editors.

    Others may take comfort in today’s projections by Nate Silver and/or Sam Wang. For me, this editorial declared the Village’s expectation of the election’s outcome.

  111. 111
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @gene108: Wasn’t that just the final act in the Southern Strategy?

    The W Brand was seen as “winners” so there’s that. But more fundamentally, it seems like the Dem Party in the South had its white reps and Black reps, gerrymandered away. So branding Clinton as a near-lover would probably be more critical. The gay-baiting may also have played a role. A lot of the white tribalist politics seemed to be carried out under the cover of religion, very active in the 1990s until the IRS shut that whole thing down.

    I’m having a hard time believing that Whitewater or The Intern had much to do with it.

  112. 112
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @MikeJ: When I feel up to it, I click on ALL the stupid, insulting, racist Rmoney ads.

    I then enter lolspeak terms in their search bar on their website, just to waste more server time and make it look like they got a “live one” on click thrus and frustrate whoever follows the search terms. Assuming they do this kind of basic followup metrics stuff.

    Warblog!

    PS: their search function sucks. I’ve never gotten a hit on a single term I’ve entered, and sometimes the thing just breaks.

  113. 113
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @gene108: vote for Romney, but believe the Republicans won’t do what they say they are going to do, like screw FEMA into the ground (which every Republican Admin has done), end Social Security and Medicare as we know it and make abortion illegal.

    The Audacity of Hope Faith

  114. 114
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    @Speculum Spatula:

    I’m one of the few actual Liberals whiny lefty-purist fuckwads who read and post here.

    FTFY, shithead.

  115. 115
    Ruckus says:

    @Spaghetti Lee:
    I think it’s quite possible he pisses in his own cheerios every morning.

    ETA If I had finished reading first I would have seen that Roger Moore got there first.

  116. 116
    lamh35 says:

    Oh wow Halperin had an epiphany 18 months too damn late.

    Two Different Types of Crowds

    Mark Halperin: “Don’t kill me for the obvious, but the near absence of racial diversity in the Romney crowds is teased out further by the contrast with the rainbow the President draws. It is more striking than I have ever experienced it in any presidential campaign I have covered.”

  117. 117
    Smiling Mortician says:

    @Another Halocene Human: The Audacity of Hope Faith Dumb.

  118. 118
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    @Tom Q:

    As for the Cohan source…don’t people still watch Yankee Doodle Dandy? That’d get them familiar with it.

    I dunno about “people,” but it should be no surprise that yerstruly has never watched YDD & therefore had no clue where the familiar tune came from. Thanky kindly!

  119. 119
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @Chris: But the country was also a lot whiter back then

    You mean the electorate.

  120. 120
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @Chris: But the country was also a lot whiter back then

    You mean the electorate.

  121. 121
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @lamh35:

    Yeah, I saw it a day or two ago on someone’s FB and thought it was adorable. But I missed the subtlety of the grey hair! Thanks for pointing that out.

    On a personal, sad, and decidedly off-topic note, I learned a short time ago that a younger cousin (which is to say, early 50s) died this morning after a couple of weeks of inconclusive tests and another week of ICU. He lost over 30 pounds in less than three weeks, which is why he checked himself in to begin with. Scary not to have a clue about the cause, and of course just dreadful for his parents, both of whom are in their 80s.

  122. 122
    Chris says:

    @gene108:

    I think it was inevitable that the Dem brand would end up completely trashed in the South. It just happened to take thirty or forty years, because it takes time for a demographic to transition completely from one party to the next, and the Democrats managed to slow the process by running good white Southern boys like Carter and Clinton. But the writing was on the wall the minute Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act. No way would Kent Starr or Karl Rove have been able to “trash the Democratic brand” in the pre-civil rights era, no matter how many scandals they drudged up.

  123. 123
    Chris says:

    @Another Halocene Human:

    A lot of the white tribalist politics seemed to be carried out under the cover of religion, very active in the 1990s until the IRS shut that whole thing down.

    Wait, what did the IRS do?

  124. 124
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    @gene108: At the risk of preaching to the quire:

    Some decades back there was a politician who wrote (dictated) a book in which he laid out in some detail a pretty terrible set of things he intended to do once in power. And as he made his way toward power, people discounted his stated plans as campaign blather, you know, stuff to rouse the rabble–he couldn’t possibly mean it & even if he did, the political system would keep him from doing it. We all know how that turned out.

    Moral of the story: When someone says they intend to do something, it’s safest to take them at their word.

  125. 125
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    @gene108: At the risk of preaching to the quire:

    Some decades back there was a politician who wrote (dictated) a book in which he laid out in some detail a pretty terrible set of things he intended to do once in power. And as he made his way toward power, people discounted his stated plans as campaign blather, you know, stuff to rouse the rabble–he couldn’t possibly mean it & even if he did, the political system would keep him from doing it. We all know how that turned out.

    Moral of the story: When someone says they intend to do something, it’s safest to take them at their word.

  126. 126
  127. 127
    Maude says:

    Late to the thread.
    Why are the Repubs at airports?
    Are they competing with Hari Krishnas?

  128. 128
    Violet says:

    @Svensker: Oh, jeez, that’s depressing. I thought mine was jetlag, but then by Wednesday I realized I really wasn’t feeling well and ended up napping on the sofa. I can’t do things for a short period of time, but then I have to lie down. Eight days, huh? Ugh. I really don’t need to sick that long. Hope you are on the mend.

  129. 129
    var says:

    Can we freep the sarcastic Twitter tag #SaySomethingNiceAboutObama?

    Wingnuts are trying to have fun with it – so let’s dump all over it with nice things to say about Obama.

  130. 130
    Another Halocene Human says:

    OT: I think I finally killed my headache today by making my own version of SE Asian Ramen:

    frozen peas, whole coriander, black pepper water in microwave until really hot

    add lime juice, hot sauce, heat some more

    thin sliced tomato, rice noodles, 30 seconds

    Made the mucus FLOW, man! And the acid washes it away.

    No dried shrimps b/c I don’t have any but they would totally go in for the authentic version. Fresh cilantro, too.

  131. 131
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Ann Rynd:

    Yes indeed. Used to watch the Fred Astaire program, used to know lots of George M. Cohan songs, and had at least the first three Allan Sherman albums memorized.

    ::moves off, humming “Get On the Garden Freeway” to herself::

  132. 132
    Svensker says:

    @SiubhanDuinne:

    That is scary as hell. Big sympathies.

  133. 133
    Maude says:

    @Violet:
    I’ve been known to sit on the floor and put stuff in the fridge.

  134. 134
    SectarianSofa says:

    FSM I’m ready for this thing to be over.
    I just want to take a couple of close states (Flordia, perhaps?) so we won’t have to wait for the resolution of Ohio vote-counting shenanigans.

  135. 135
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @Uncle Cosmo: It’s interesting. Due to some quirks in my high school experience, I studied Nazi Germany in the same detail it seems like most Americans study the Civil War.

    I think my education was, pardon me for saying so, much more relevant. Fascism is not going away, whereas the Civil War was more the end of an era, and the constant obsession with it clouds people to the reality we experience today. Even in warfare terms it was a preview of WWI, but for a variety of reasons it was a lesson that went unheeded in Old Europe.

    German politics were the leading edge of what we later got in the US in part because they urbanized a few generations earlier. There’s entirely too much focus on foundational myths in US history class, and a down-the-memory-hole attitude towards recent history.

  136. 136
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @Chris: They shut down the org that was distributing Republican voter guides in churches. Of course the principles all scattered to other wingnut welfare posts, the damage being done.

    Pat Robertson isn’t running for preznint any more, though.

    ETA: http://www.washingtonpost.com/.....tian11.htm

  137. 137
    JPL says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: That is so sad and my condolences.

  138. 138
    aimai says:

    Just got in from canvassing for Warren in MA. We are letting the Obama vote take care of itself but we are putting all our efforts into dragging every single one of the world’s potential Warren voters to the polls. I myself am
    a) GOTV on Sunday as well as Saturday
    b) Poll Watching on Tuesday in a split shift and
    c) giving two old ladies rides to the poll in between my shift. That’s not two votes that wouldn’t have happened, necessarily. But since I was going door to door and they said they needed rides I took a leaf from the book of a Kos poster and just went ahead and told them I’d pick them up on Tuesday so they didn’t have to call someone else to get them.

    aimai

  139. 139
    SectarianSofa says:

    Also, local anecdote — the early voting location I visited here in Collin County (north of Dallas) was surprisingly busy. All kinds of people, some of which I would wager voted straight ticket Kenyan Usurper Party like me. Good to see, in this red, red county. Showing up and getting counted. (Except of courese, Diebold machines, so I’m hoping they finish that IEEE standard on voting systems before the next one.)

  140. 140
    Another Halocene Human says:

    To Chris or anyone interested in keeping an eye on the Religious Reich, please consider becoming an Americans United for the Separation of Church and State member, or at least go to AU.org and get on their email list or put them in your feed or follow their FB or twitter (hope they’re on twitter now) at the very least.

    There are other groups out there (FFRF, for one, and the ACLU, although that’s only a small part of what they do) but AU has really been doing some of the best outreach and legal work lately in this sphere.

  141. 141
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @SectarianSofa: I’m hoping the Right latches onto voting machine hysteria in a big way and we go back to handcounts. Even the scantrons can’t be trusted, not with so much at stake.

  142. 142
    SectarianSofa says:

    @aimai:
    You rock.

  143. 143
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @Svensker: Seconded.

  144. 144
    JGabriel says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: My condolences and sympathies on your, and your family’s, loss.

  145. 145
    SectarianSofa says:

    @Another Halocene Human:
    Good point. I’ve not developed a working theory of why I haven’t heard hysteria about machines yet. (I’m probably only one chain email away from hearing, though.) Probably the machines are just the right, off-white color. Until they turn traitorous because of Atheist Muslim Soros types.

    Also, the Taggs or Tutts or whoever are supposed to be keeping on eye on things for Diebold and friends.

  146. 146
    some guy says:

    aimai rules

  147. 147
    JGabriel says:

    __
    __
    var:

    Can we freep the sarcastic Twitter tag #SaySomethingNiceAboutObama?

    President Obama showed us his taxes. #SaySomethingNiceAboutObama

    President Obama never sent my job overseas. #SaySomethingNiceAboutObama

    President Obama never made me carry my rape fetus to term. #SaySomethingNiceAboutObama

    President Obama never tied and bound me to the roof of a car — Bo, the Portuguese Water Dog. #SaySomethingNiceAboutObama

    President Obama helped my state! — Chris Christie. #SaySomethingNiceAboutObama

    .

  148. 148
    Lojasmo says:

    @Smegma Spatula:

    But the republicans stole their second election and Dems let it happen.

    Ken Blackwell, Ohio SoS was a republican at the time. HE was arbiter of election law in Ohio, Asshole.

  149. 149
    Michael says:

    @SectarianSofa: As if on cue, the complaints about the voting machines start rolling on. Switching Romney votes to Obama votes!

  150. 150
    Chris says:

    @Another Halocene Human:

    I haven’t studied Nazi Germany in-depth, but I try to read whatever I can get my hands on re fascism – the question of how people end up that fucked up is a fascinating one.

    Other than urbanization, seems to me like defeat’s also a big factor in making fascism popular. Germany losing World War One made fertile ground for the Nazis, just like the South losing the Civil War made it fertile ground for the KKK. America as a whole hadn’t experienced that until Vietnam – it’s no accident that the rise of the security state, “law and order” rhetoric, Reagan-style nationalism, came in the aftermath of that. Military defeat injects insecurity, humiliation and a burning desire to “get even” that makes the crazies’ speeches really resonate.

  151. 151
    pr says:

    @Roger Moore:

    I think he peed in his own cheerios, but then decided to blame it on somebody else; it’s the Republican way.

    It doesn’t bother me when they piss in their own cheerios, since given the way many Republicans typically view the world they probably believe it tastes better that way. I just wish they would leave mine alone.

  152. 152
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    @SiubhanDuinne:

    ::moves off, humming “Get On the Garden Freeway” to herself::

    So where do we send all those internetz you won with this?

  153. 153
    Lojasmo says:

    @PsiFighter37: @Another Halocene Human:

    You should start entering urban dictionary terms like “blumpkin” and “hot Karl” That will really throw them off.

  154. 154
    Mike in NC says:

    @Mark S.: Barone went full wingnut 20 years ago.

  155. 155
    JGabriel says:

    __
    __
    Another Halocene Human:

    Due to some quirks in my high school experience, I studied Nazi Germany in the same detail it seems like most Americans study the Civil War.
    __
    I think my education was, pardon me for saying so, much more relevant. Fascism is not going away, whereas the Civil War was more the end of an era…

    And the beginning of an era as well: Robert Paxton identified the beginning of Fascism with the KKK in his The Anatomy of Fascism, and most scholars of the subject seem to agree with that assessment.

    So, it’s fair to say that the KKK is just as relevant to the study of Fascism as is Nazi Germany and Italy under Mussolini. Of course, your point is ultimately correct given that most American schools don’t include that in their lessons on the Civil War.

    .

  156. 156
    Schlemizel says:

    Been away all day & just discovered my life is now complete! I MADE A MENTION ON THE FP!

  157. 157
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @JGabriel: Well, I did actually study Reconstruction a bit, as opposed to my Civil War void. But as I’ve said earlier on this blog, I’m only now starting to piece it together in a way that makes sense. Too much was left unsaid.

    When I studied the Nazi rise to power and the Nazi regime I relied a lot more on multiple primary sources and a lot of good secondary ones. (Yes, I studied the German language, too, but there are a lot of primary sources in (mostly) English, as well as in French.) And I don’t mean retrospective hagiography like Nathaniel Bedford Forrest’s “The Bat Man” style origin story. (“Criminals are a superstitious and cowardly lot.”) Which was for reals in my history book.

    Plus, you can’t just turn to the KKK. Ataturk was more interested in the Trail of Tears, as was Hitler. I think there is a link there to the Blackshirts, however.

    Here’s my beef: The 19th century US did NOT have universal suffrage, and the KKK was organized to beat back baby steps towards that. However, the 20th century fascist movement emerged in the context of universal suffrage as a mass movement and on-the-ground reality. Mussolini and Hitler and their corporate backers had to craft a Fascism that could take over the reigns of state power in that environment. Which is much more relevant to the Republican Party today than the old “Solid South” in which only a small minority of the population was represented by their representatives and this was broadly accepted (if underpinned by terror).

    And before I get called an idiot, GWB was a master at this, drawing votes from multiple constituencies and making it rain for war profiteers. What 2012 has been about has been Obama Derangement Syndrome sending Republicans into a fugue state where they draw on pre-1965 solutions which, as anyone can plainly see, are not fucking working.

    The states are quite instructive. The plan is to seize power legitimately through an election, then use that power to consolidate power (forever). In Ohio, the attempted Reichstag fire didn’t work, but we have 50 states…

    And yes, these people scare me.

  158. 158
    MomSense says:

    Thank you to you and your wife, Tom.

    I will be running our local phonebanks (Maine calling into NH) for the next three days but a lot of my friends will be in NH knocking on doors.

    After more than a year of preparing for this, I still can’t believe we are in the home stretch.

    Yes, the Citizens United special interests will get better at this–and so will we. We have to crush them this time and push back every time they try to enact voter suppression and anti union laws. We have no choice.

  159. 159
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @Chris: Defeat not followed by a Marshall Plan, yes.

  160. 160
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @JGabriel: And the beginning of an era as well: Robert Paxton identified the beginning of Fascism with the KKK in his The Anatomy of Fascism, and most scholars of the subject seem to agree with that assessment.

    Are you sure you linked me to the right book? I’ve never read it but the Amazon reviews dispute with the author on assigning the word fascism only to the 20th century. It seems that I agree with Paxton and you with the reviewer, unless the reviewer completely misread the book, or you did, or you linked the wrong book.

    Help?

  161. 161
    Chris says:

    @Another Halocene Human:

    I’ve read the book, and yes, Paxton does identify the Ku Klux Klan as the first fascist movement in history. Not sure what the reviews say.

    Re your earlier post – seems to me that the Ku Klux Klan was about more than just Southern elites, especially if you look at the Second Klan of the 1920s, which was a nationwide and patriotically themed movement rather than regional and separatist as the first one had been. And even if it was still attached at the hips with local elites, it also tapped into genuine grassroots terror at things like immigration, modernization, alcohol, etc, and seems like a product of the same kind of mass politics, even if it didn’t have as much luck as the Nazis and others in Europe.

  162. 162
    Chris says:

    Just for fun, Paxton’s definition of fascism –

    “Fascism may be defined as a form of political behavior marked by obsessive preoccupation with community decline, humiliation, or victim-hood and by compensatory cults of unity, energy, and purity, in which a mass-based party of committed nationalist militants, working in uneasy but effective collaboration with traditional elites, abandons democratic liberties and pursues with redemptive violence and without ethical or legal restraints goals of internal cleansing and external expansion.”

    That’s the shorter for the entire book.

    He too emphasizes the importance of a popular mass movement, working with the elites but not simply being a product of the elites. However, he ranks the KKK as being one such movement. Not sure to what extent that’s accurate (never really thought about it before now); I know the original Klan at least was largely Southern elites using the dunce hats to hide their identities, but is it fair to say the same about the later incarnations?

  163. 163
    Speculum Spatula says:

    @Uncle Cosmo:

    I’m one of the few actual Liberals whiny lefty-purist fuckwads who read and post here.

    Ah, you’re so well spoken. Good for you. THIS is Obot thinking at its baldest. Carry on.

  164. 164
    gene108 says:

    @Another Halocene Human:

    I think its more nuanced than just racial animus. North Carolina voters nearly defeated Jesse Helms with a black guy in 1990.

    From David Brock’s book Blinded by the Right, the Republicans were shit scared that Clinton could undo whatever demographic gains the Republicans had picked up in the 1980’s, i.e. Reagan Democrats.

    Americans had become disillusioned after Watergate, Vietnam and the stagflation of the 1970’s and early 1980’s. For all of Ronald Reagan’s optimism, Iran-Contra and whatever else he did still hadn’t convinced Americans that his brand of “government is the problem” was what was good for them.

    Bush, Sr. wasn’t really a “devotee” of President Reagan and didn’t care to sell the “government is the problem” line as strongly as his predecessor and didn’t bother to sell it.

    In 1992 people still wanted to believe government could be efficient and effective, but they didn’t think the Democrats or Republicans could solve their problems. That’s why Perot got 19% of the vote, even after his campaign started self-destructing towards the end.

    The 1992 election and even Reagan and Bush, Sr.’s actions, while President, were very much driven by the fact that most voters thought positively of the New Deal and to a lesser extent the Great Society programs of LBJ.

    Republicans had been able to demonize some of the Great Society programs, but here comes young, charismatic, President Clinton who basically said, “I hear ya America, and we’re going to fix these programs up and make government work for you again”.

    He said he’d put more cops on the street. Violent crime started dropping for the first time in a generation in the 1990’s.

    I know many liberals are upset about welfare reform, but President Clinton also began a program of tearing down the housing projects of the 1960’s and 1970’s that did nothing to benefit their tenets and were breeding grounds for crime.

    His reform of federal housing moved people out into communities and out of the projects.

    The economy, even before the dot.com bubble was growing. The stock market nearly doubled in value from the time President Clinton took office, until Alan Greenspan’s “irrational exuberance” statement, in 1996.

    Sure President Clinton had his detractors, especially with getting gays into the military, but there were a lot of substantive things that should’ve resonated with more voters in the 1990’s and blocked out the “draft dodger” and gays in the military issue, if we lived in a society with a functioning media.

    What turned people off was the soap opera quality of the Clinton years. The constant “scandals” starting with the MSM running right-wing media screed like “Travelgate”, “Haircut gate” and finally Whitewater that drove out the notion that government could be fair, honest and not corrupt or at least Democrats weren’t the ones, who could do it.

    That’s why Bush, Jr. ran on “restoring honor and integrity to the White House” in 2000 and Al Gore chose to run away from a great 8 year period in American history. EDIT: That’s why he also ran on a platform of “compassionate” conservatism, because Americans didn’t want their government to solely funnel money to the rich and shit on everyone else and his father ran on a 1,000 points of light, in 1988.

    Somewhere along the line the fault lines that were developing between state Democratic office holders and the national part really increased and then the state Democratic parties started to fall apart because of a well orchestrated push by Republicans and their propaganda arms that they started building after Watergate.

    To just ascribe what happened in the 1990’s to a “demographic shift” running its course over simplifies the extent of the organization the right-wingers developed in the 1970’s and 1980’s that really came to blossom by the 1990’s.

    And the folks, who really took to these new bloom were Southerners, who felt the Democratic Party had left them and all the Clinton scandals drove that point home to them.

    The disillusion of state and local Democratic Parties really is more about Republicans and their backers out organizing and out funding the Democrats.

    The question is what is it going to take to undo the damage?

  165. 165
    gogol's wife says:

    @PsiFighter37:

    THANK YOU!

  166. 166
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Svensker: Thanks. This was a guy who was very fit, lean, great athlete (tennis pro, champion skier), so the transition from healthy to dead in little more than a month is pretty sobering. My sister is speculating that it might have been a parasite, which is plausible, I guess, but pretty academic at this point. Autopsy may provide some insight.

  167. 167
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @JPL: Thank you. The cousinship (consanguinity) wasn’t that close — I think I calculated that he was a fourth cousin once removed — but I have spent just about every Thanksgiving and Christmas and other celebratory events with the family for the past twenty years, so it’s a loss.

  168. 168
    gelfling545 says:

    @Uncle Cosmo: I think that this is disregard for a politician’s stated aims is pretty common in the US. Remember how many people were enraged at the President for doing things he had stated in his campaign speeches that he intended to do if elected. They just hadn’t believed him. They start from the premise that all politicians lie and more or less go on from there into infinity. It’s also the reason Romney hasn’t been made a political scandal & hissing with his blatant lies. They know he’s lying but assume everybody does it and won’t really do anything he said except for the things they particularly want, of course. Sadly, it’s not confined to any particular political persuasion, either.

  169. 169
    gelfling545 says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: I learned them from my grandfather’s dedication to watching Sing Along with Mitch Miller – for it’s entire broadcast life – then he bought the LPs.

  170. 170
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @JGabriel: Thank you.

    @Uncle Cosmo:

    So where do we send all those internetz you won with this?

    You will have to go to the Toobz to look up my address. (Also, too, I find I have given myself an earworm.)

  171. 171
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @gelfling545:

    Apropos of nothing much, but I once bought Mitch Miller a cantaloupe.

  172. 172
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Another Halocene Human:

    There’s one problem with your theory, though — the Nazi Party never had a majority until Hindenburg appointed Hitler as Chancellor, which put Hitler in a position to make himself President at Hindenburg’s death and start banning other parties. At the time he was made the head of what was supposed to be a coalition government, Hitler’s party had never broken 30% in the German parliament.

    So there is a lesson there, but the lesson is more that right-wingers are fucking idiots if they think they can control the crazy by giving them just a little bit of power.

  173. 173
    Kayla Rudbek says:

    From northen Virginia: spouse and I got to the absentee-in-person polling place around 4:45, did not get done and out until 6:45. We had GOTV come by this morning although we were sleeping in so I didn’t answer the door. And I very firmly refused to even look at the republican sample ballots they were handing out…

  174. 174
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Chris:

    I know the original Klan at least was largely Southern elites using the dunce hats to hide their identities, but is it fair to say the same about the later incarnations?

    IIRC, when the KKK was revived in the early 1900s, they were very much a nationwide political power and had affiliated candidates getting elected all over the country. It might be fairer to call them “proto-fascist,” but remember that Mussolini had published his fascist manifesto by 1921, was Italy’s Prime Minister in 1922, and was Il Duce in 1925. Fascism was firmly established as a political power long before Hitler came to power in Germany.

  175. 175
    Brother Shotgun of Sweet Reason says:

    @RSA: @Mnemosyne:

    whistle stop tour, which appropriately enough died out in the 1950s.

    Not quite, I saw Nixon speaking from the back of his train in 1960!

  176. 176
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Brother Shotgun of Sweet Reason:

    I have a really fun book called K Blows Top! about Nikita Khrushchev’s visits to the US. Part of his original visit included a whistle-stop tour of California from Los Angeles to San Francisco, where Khrushchev waded into the crowd in Santa Barbara to kiss babies and pose for pictures.

  177. 177
    Rusty says:

    Just got back from the Obama rally in Dubuque, Iowa. It was great. It was chilly, of course, but the really bitter cold and rain and snow stayed away. John Mellencamp loosened the crowd with a 6 song set while we waited for the President. President Obama arrived and was in good spirits. I really don’t know how he does it, how he continues to give one great speech after another. Or even why he wants to continue to be President, but he does and we’re lucky to have him. It was a nice touch for him to point out at a couple of different points in the speech, of how Iowan voters launched his campaign 5 years ago. He remembers.

    So it’s onto GOTV on Monday night, voting on Tuesday, and awaiting returns with my friend who is running for legislature in SW Wisconsin. Gonna be a busy week.

  178. 178
    Starlit says:

    @arguingwithsignposts: Not only mailing it in, but forgetting the stamp.

  179. 179
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @Chris: I didn’t realize we were talking about the Second Klan. My bad.

  180. 180
    Starlit says:

    @dmsilev: Seeing Paul Ryan recycling Obama’s campaign tagline from the 2008 election gives me a warm fuzzy. They haven’t the imagination to sell themselves.

  181. 181
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @Rusty: Or even why he wants to continue to be President, but he does and we’re lucky to have him.

    Megadittoes on this.

  182. 182
    Chris says:

    @Another Halocene Human:

    We weren’t – originally I was just talking about the Klan in general. After reading what you said, it occurred to me that there’d been more than one Klan, and that what you were saying seemed to apply to the first while what I said applied more to the second.

  183. 183
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @Chris: You might be right. I really don’t know much about the 2nd Klan (more familiar with the 3rd), although according to Wikipedia it grew quickly in cities and probably coincided with the period of government redlining which enforced racial segregation in the cities via disrupting the home loan market. If so, the ‘defeat’ was the sudden loss of household wealth by white families in mixed urban neighborhoods, and the false villain was their black neighbors, or the “white ethnics” in the next block over who let blacks live in their blocks, downgrading your neighborhood by proximity.

    So I guess we can both agree on that, although I don’t see any like between the anti-Catholic, anti-immigrant, lynch-happy 2nd KKK and Adolf Hitler.

    KKK: Founded in 1915 in Atlanta, GA

    1914/August Hitler applies to join Bavarian Army
    1914/10 Hitler fights in the 1st battle of Ypres. His company is reduced by 80%
    1917/4 Battle of Arras
    1917/summer Hitler is fighting on the Western Front
    1918 Hitler is injured in a mustard gas attack and is sent to hospital

    War ends. Hitler wants to remain in uniform, so he becomes an intelligence officer.
    1919/July Hitler is assigned to monitor the extremist DAP.
    1919/9 Hitler joins the DAP.

    1921 KKK kicks off recruitment into high gear and spreads its franchise nationally

    1921 Hitler is building the NSDAP in Munich and consolidating power over the organization.

    1922 Mussolini’s March on Rome

    1923/November Beer Hall Putsch, inspired by Mussolini
    Three days later, Hitler is arrested.

    1924 Hitler is cooling his ass in prison, writing revenge fantasy porn about his formative years, his hated father, and the boogeyman that “stabbed Germany in the back” during WWI.

    Mid 1920’s, height of the 2nd Klan, claims of millions of members, lynching spree occurring in the South

    1925, Mein Kampf is published. Hitler recruits new recruiters for the NSDAP (including Goebbels) because the heat is still on him for that whole beerhall putsch misunderstanding thingy.

    1929/10 US stock market crashes

    1930 2nd KKK collapsing under its own weight of grift and criminality, reduced to some 30K members

    I don’t believe the 2nd KKK had much influence, if any, on Hitler. I’m sure he was aware of the first KKK as well as the shit that went down in South Africa (there was a significant Austrian population there), though it would be fair to point out that he took inspiration from recent and more distant Turkish history as well. Singling out the KKK is a little simplistic because the Nazis were inspired by the entire racist legal framework of the US, which included laws restricting Native Americans and Asian immigrants. I hardly think that KKK internal organizing was relevant to a bunch of ex-Prussian, Bavarian, and Austro-Hungarian subjects who were accustomed to regimented army-style internal organizing.

    Hitler had bigger plans, which is why he got rid of the SA once he had consolidated power. Since the judiciary was arch-conservative and supported his government, the coast was clear to use state power. Thus, anything resembling a KKK model was no longer relevant and in its dionysian outbursts remarkably unGerman anyway. At least their image of German. (The Nazis also declared war on gays, lesbians, extra-marital sex, interracial relationships, modern art, jazz music…)

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