From Soccer Moms to Windows 8

59069-scroogled-newspaper-md I knew that Mark Penn had been promoted to Microsoft’s new “Chief Strategy Officer”, but I didn’t know that he was responsible for the “Scroogled” campaign, where Microsoft attacked Google for misuse of users’ data immediately before it was revealed that Microsoft also shared tons of data with the NSA. Because this was a Penn operation, the Scroogled campaign included a store where people could buy swag like mugs and t-shirts. Those quickly sold out, in part because Google employees apparently bought them as a joke.

In case your child ever ingests some poison and you need an swift and reliable emetic, here’s a paragraph from Penn’s Microsoft bio:

For six years, Penn served as White House Pollster to President Clinton and was a key strategy adviser in his 1996 re-election, identifying “soccer moms” as the key swing vote needed for victory. Penn also served as chief strategist to Hillary Clinton in her Senate campaigns and 2008 Presidential campaign, devising her “upstate strategy” in New York and creating the “3 AM” ad in the 2008 primaries. Throughout his career, Penn has helped elect more than 25 leaders in the United States, Asia, Latin America and Europe.

I lived in Upstate New York when Hillary was running and as far as I could tell, Penn’s “upstate strategy” consisted of “Hillary, make a few campaign stops north of Westchester County. Oh by the way, where’s my check?” And of course he left out his complete failure to grasp the rules of the Democratic Presidential Primary, as well as Nick Clegg.

I have to believe that even if this turd has left the Clinton world, some of his skidmarks remain. That, not the Clenis, is my main concern about putting the Clintons back in the driver’s seat of the Democratic Party.

Update: And, like clockwork, a skidmark from another turd in the Clinton orbit:

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160 replies
  1. 1
    Elizabelle says:

    One of my reasons for being reluctant about a second President Clinton:

    I don’t want her to take credit for all the things Barack Obama has done, very well, and never gotten credit for.

    Like healthcare reform, which functions better month by month. Not just because it’s changed hands.

  2. 2
    cleek says:

    well, that and the fact that she’s a hawk who’s to the left of exactly zero of Obama’s positions

  3. 3
    Baud says:

    @Elizabelle:

    Obamacare will be three years old by the next inauguration.

  4. 4
    VOR says:

    Time to sell any Microsoft stock you may own.

  5. 5
    Bob says:

    Yuck, you ruined my week just mentioning Penn. I can see the fat fuck sweating.

  6. 6
    cmorenc says:

    @Elizabelle:

    One of my reasons for being reluctant about a second President Clinton:
    I don’t want her to take credit for all the things Barack Obama has done, very well, and never gotten credit for.
    Like healthcare reform, which functions better month by month. Not just because it’s changed hands.

    I’m frankly lots more concerned with the possibility of a President Scott Walker or Marco Rubio or Mike Huckabee et. al. taking credit for dismantling all the things Barack Obama has done than I am at the prospect of a second President Clinton.

    The Clintons do seem adept at learning from their past mistakes, albeit sometimes a bit more eventually than immediately, and sometimes a bit cozier with establishment corporate power than I would prefer. But the thing that is most important of all is that a democrat win the presidency in 2016 and not a Republican. The fundamental nature of the future of this country depends on it. Next time the GOP gains control ov all three branches of government, including both houses of Congress, their goal of rooting out all progressive institutions of government back to the start of the New Deal and salting the structural earth to make it impossible to arise again for several generatins at least, is not in doubt. Neither will the social conservatives be nearly so willing to give the Chamber of Commerce Republicans a pass to talk big and act small if at all on their cherished goals of turning the U.S.into a theocratic republic-lite.

  7. 7
    grillo says:

    One of the things I found remarkable about the ‘scroogled’ campaign is that, any time there was a story or post about it, even at Microsoft fan sites, the comments would fill up with how pathetic it was.

    There would always be one commenter who would rant about how Google was evil and Microsoft supreme, but almost everyone else, including the ultra Microsoft fanbois, thought the whole thing was stupid (not that they didn’t hate and distrust Google, they just thought the Scroogled thing was idiotic).

    I also observed that the one commenter who was onboard almost always said exactly the same things.

    Hmmm.

  8. 8
    grillo says:

    One of the things I found remarkable about the ‘scroogled’ campaign is that, any time there was a story or post about it, even at Microsoft fan sites, the comments would fill up with how pathetic it was.

    There would always be one commenter who would rant about how Google was evil and Microsoft supreme, but almost everyone else, including the ultra Microsoft fanbois, thought the whole thing was stupid (not that they didn’t hate and distrust Google, they just thought the Scroogled thing was idiotic).

    I also observed that the one commenter who was onboard almost always said exactly the same things.

    Hmmm.

  9. 9
    SP says:

    Don’t people usually put things they’re proud of on those bio pages, not, “Look, I failed at multiple projects, but they were really important projects!” Or maybe he is proud of these things which just shows that he’s psychotic.

  10. 10
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @cmorenc: The Clintons do seem adept at learning from their past mistakes

    You have evidence of this?

  11. 11
    Chris T. says:

    I would not say “adept” so much as “able”.

    This distinguishes them from pretty much any viable Republican candidate. :-)

  12. 12
    aimai says:

    @cmorenc: Yup. I also think any concerns about Obama getting credit, or not getting credit, are absurd and he would be the last person on earth to think that is dispositive. Obamacare is and always will be a Democratic initiative, it was done for the benefit of the entire fucking country by the Democratic party. Lots of people had a hand in pushing it through–notably Nancy Pelosi–and the credit goes to all Democrats past, present, and future who are willing to run on it and shore it up.

  13. 13
    aimai says:

    I think I should add that not every election has to be an election which pushes forward the most radical instantiation of the party in order to be considered a success. Frankly, I’d be happy if the Dems just held on to the Presidency, dragged back the Senate and the House, and set themselves up for longer term success at the state level as the population shifts.

    I’m not a Clinton supporter but if she is running and she looks like the best chance to win–because of money, skill, age, cunning, and determination I’m happy to vote for her. I think she’ll do a fine job as actual President and she will hold the line while we develop a deeper bench (hopefully) and watch the Republican party turn itself into the whigs.

    The real action is going to be on the top line (the presidency) and in the governorships and the house. We may lose the Senate this round and if we do we simply can’t afford a vanity run for the presidency by someone whose main claim to fame is “anyone but hillary.”

  14. 14
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @cmorenc:

    I’m frankly lots more concerned with the possibility of a President Scott Walker or Marco Rubio or Mike Huckabee …

    Running another Baby Boomer who also happens to be a hawkish, triangulating, liar is a great way to ensure just that. I’d much prefer someone like Connecticut Governor Dan Malloy to yet another Clinton.

  15. 15
    Yatsuno says:

    This is somewhat the fault of the national Democrats. Instead of getting the really deep bench more prominent voices they just sat back because of timidity over any repeats of 2010 happening. So instead of talking about really good contenders like Kristen Gillenbrand or Julian Castro (the future is a Latino/a President folks!) we just let Hillary waltz into the inevitability chair. I only hope she picks a decent VP who can be groomed to take her place afterwards.

    Oh and she’ll be a one-termer. Calling that now.

  16. 16
    Paul in KY says:

    @Elizabelle: As long as she does get elected, don’t really care. Having a Democrat in White House is the main & only thing right now.

  17. 17
    Crouchback says:

    @Elizabelle: I’d be perfectly happy to see the Clintons grab credit for Obama’s policies because they’d be more likely to back them. I’d be more worried they’ll distance themselves because they think they’re better and want to show they don’t need Obama. We’ve already got Hillary Clinton taking a hawkish line on the Ukraine. I’m worried they’ll refuse help from Obama’s team when it comes to voter turn out. Or embrace deficit reduction and trimming entitlements to show they’re more “responsible.” Or talk about cutting a deal with the GOP to “reform” the Affordable Care Act. Remember, the Clintons came up with triangulation and abandoned their party in 1996. I’ll vote for Hillary Clinton if she’s the candidate in 2016 and hope she does a good job. I’d be happy if she tried to distinguish herself from Obama by taking a more aggressively populist line. I’m just afraid the Clintons have spent too many years among the elite and have their heads stuck in the neoliberal 90s.

  18. 18
    ericblair says:

    @SP:

    Don’t people usually put things they’re proud of on those bio pages, not, “Look, I failed at multiple projects, but they were really important projects!”

    My read on institutional behavior is that an organization would rather hire somebody who’s done X regardless of whether they did a good job or fucked it up, rather than somebody who hasn’t done X but is obviously capable of doing it well based on their other experience. Look at C-level management of Fortune 500 companies for some depressing examples of this.

  19. 19
    phantomist says:

    Apple products are crap and you should scrap them.

    And the Scapple campaign is born.
    Where’s my million dollars Gates?

  20. 20
    Belafon says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate:

    Running another Baby Boomer who also happens to be a hawkish, triangulating, liar is a great way to ensure just that

    Evidence says Polls say no.

    Edit: Fixed last sentence

  21. 21
    Belafon says:

    @aimai:

    We may lose the Senate this round and if we do we simply can’t afford a vanity run for the presidency by someone whose main claim to fame is “anyone but hillary.”

    And that’s my biggest concern. I will not look at anyone whose only running as “I’m not a Clinton.” That’s as bad as the DNCC’s “Not a Republican” bumper sticker you can buy.

  22. 22

    Yes, the campaign is stupid and Microsoft in particular is a horrible company that is going down the tubes. Windows 8 was a nightmare, both of bad design and offensive business practices.

    But Google selling paid results is downright evil, and I’ve generally liked Google. It’s not the greed that bothers me. The ad buyers are usually scammers, and especially PUP scammers. If you don’t know what a PUP is, it’s the new generation of viruses on steroids. They come bundled with commonly downloaded programs (Minecraft mods, even!) There’s an innocuous little ‘Do you want to install this, too?’ designed to fool people into clicking through. If you install it, you are screwed.

    Since you technically gave it permission, it is immune to virus and anti-malware programs. It will take over your computer, do virus stuff like open you to phishers and trojans, force you to go to a website and pay a toll just to access your files – horrible stuff. I had to reformat my hard drives when I got the Search Protect PUP while trying to install Skype. Our local computer service people said I did the right thing, because even if you figure out (and it requires serious trickery) how to remove the obvious parts of the program, you’re still infected and there’s nothing that can be done.

    Oh, and they rig the ‘Do you want to uninstall?’ programs so that any button you push installs more PUPs. If you even see an ‘Install? Yes/No/Cancel’ screen, don’t click anything. Turn off your computer, and I mean flick the switch.

    I’m writing this as a warning. It’s relevant because Google enables these scammers by letting them buy most of the top search results for common downloads. My main concern is that I don’t want anyone here who hasn’t heard of these monsters yet to catch one and go through what I did.

  23. 23
    John O says:

    No chance Hillary gets my primary vote, while having a near 100% chance of getting my general vote.

    I’m actually with Barbara Bush on this one.

  24. 24
    jonas says:

    @Crouchback:

    I’m just afraid the Clintons have spent too many years among the elite and have their heads stuck in the neoliberal 90s.

    This. And the fact that she’s still going back to that old McAuliffe/Shrum/Penn well doesn’t inspire confidence.

  25. 25
    Cervantes says:

    @aimai:

    I also think any concerns about Obama getting credit, or not getting credit, are absurd and he would be the last person on earth to think that is dispositive.

    I agree — like Harry Truman, Barack Obama is not focused on taking credit — but I also don’t think Elizabelle meant to say otherwise, or that it will be dispositive in how she votes. She just does not want to see HRC take credit.

  26. 26

    […] Original post: From Soccer Moms to Windows 8 » Balloon Juice […]

  27. 27
    catclub says:

    @phantomist: Did you mean Scrapple? Tasty endbits!

  28. 28
    Cacti says:

    @jonas:

    This. And the fact that she’s still going back to that old McAuliffe/Shrum/Penn well doesn’t inspire confidence.

    To date, Hillary Clinton’s only electoral wins were for a legacy senate seat in a D +11 state.

    I can’t shake the feeling that she’s still a paper tiger.

  29. 29
    Marc says:

    Wait, is hiring Terry McAuliffe’s political director a problem now?

    I know we like to scoff at the guy–I certainly did in 2008–but he successfully won the Virginia governor’s race in an off year, he led a Democratic sweep of all the statewide offices, and most importantly he kept Ken Cuccinelli the fuck away from the governor’s mansion. And he did it by running as a Democrat, not a triangulator.

    Virginia has been the bellwether state in the last two presidential elections. If I were running for president in 2016, McAuliffe’s political director is exactly the sort of person I’d want to hire.

    This is not a bad sign at all.

  30. 30
    catclub says:

    @Frankensteinbeck: “Microsoft in particular is a horrible company that is going down the tubes. ”

    If by down the tubes you mean a failure the likes of IBM post 1985.
    Microsoft rakes in tons of money. It will take a LONG time to collapse.
    I would date their demise to be already about 10 years old. And counting.

  31. 31
    catclub says:

    @Marc: I agree.

  32. 32
    askew says:

    People have been promising that Hillary learned from 2008 campaign mistakes and that she would not be using these old Clintonites for her campaign again. Yeah, right. Hillary hasn’t learned a damn thing. We are going to see the whole gang of corrupt, slimy morons back when Hillary runs again. That whole group still thinks it is 1998 and they are the last thing this party needs in 2016 which is why I am hoping O’Malley runs against Hillary. She can be beaten in the primaries.

  33. 33
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @Belafon:
    Early polling for the 2008 general election indicated that she’d beat Obama.

  34. 34
    askew says:

    @Elizabelle:

    Hillary spent the entire 2008 campaign taking credit for things she had nothing to do with – the Irish Peace process, FMLA, etc. She’ll be first in line taking credit for all of Obama’s accomplishments. She may suck as a politician but she has a damn good PR team. By the time she is through as president, she’ll have renamed Obamacare – Hillarycare.

  35. 35
    NonyNony says:

    @aimai:

    Frankly, I’d be happy if the Dems just held on to the Presidency, dragged back the Senate and the House, and set themselves up for longer term success at the state level as the population shifts.

    Holy crap if Democrats could do all that in 2016 it would be freaking amazing.

    Something to keep in mind – it almost does not matter who the President is if they’re a Democrat. What matters is the legislation that gets to their desks. The House and Senate are far, far more important races in many ways.

    Getting a mediocre Democrat into the White House and a solid Democratic majority into the House and Senate would do far more good than getting the best Democrat possible into a White House with a House controlled by the GOP and a Senate with a bare majority of Democrats in it. Or worse – a House and Senate controlled by the GOP. Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren could be President, and if all they had to work with was what got passed by John Boehner’s House and Mitch McConnell’s Senate, well, I leave that imagining as an exercise for the reader…

  36. 36
    phantomist says:

    @catclub:

    Did you mean Scrapple?

    I sure did. And I still can’t spell.

  37. 37
    Paul in KY says:

    @phantomist: Might want to copyright that….

  38. 38
    Paul in KY says:

    @Marc: I’d certainly hire that guy before Mark Freaking Penn.

  39. 39
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    The level of vitriol that HRC inspires is surprising to me. I am not chomping at the bit for her to run and I don’t know that I would vote for her in a primary, but, jesus, I would crawl over glass to vote for her over anyone the the GOP would put out there. I wonder whether much of the dislike stems from a reaction to the PUMA idiots of 2008 rather than a reaction to HRC herself. I would say it is important not to become a mirror image of the PUMAs in order to punish HRC for her supporters’ actions. HRC and Bill jumped on the Obama train once he won and campaigned well on his behalf.

  40. 40
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Cacti: To date, Hillary Clinton’s only electoral wins were for a legacy senate seat in a D +11 state.

    I’m not a fan of hers, but this is a bit unfair. She did win quite a few of the 2008 primaries, including some big and important states, such as Ohio, Pennsylvania, Florida…

  41. 41
    NonyNony says:

    @catclub:

    If by down the tubes you mean a failure the likes of IBM post 1985.
    Microsoft rakes in tons of money. It will take a LONG time to collapse.

    Microsoft is actually settling into their position as the next IBM quite nicely – as they have been since the 80s.

    Note that Microsoft has an entire “Professional Services” consulting arm that they have been quietly building up for a while. If you watch their entire arc of history, you can watch them following (intentionally or not) the IBM model. They’re set up to be solid for quite a long time to come, though admittedly if they suddenly lost their hold on the business desktop overnight it would probably hurt quite a bit. (This is an event that will not happen, though, since Microsoft Office, for good or ill, really is the standard by which all other Office applications are measured).

  42. 42

    @catclub:
    It will take awhile to collapse, that’s certainly true. They have too much capitol to die quickly. Once you’re rich, it’s hard to become not rich.

    They’ve still already killed their own monopolies by producing crap so bad people hunted alternatives they would normally not have considered. They haven’t learned their lesson. Instead they put the guy responsible for the messes in charge. It will be a long spiral, but they’re going down.

  43. 43
    askew says:

    @Cacti:

    To date, Hillary Clinton’s only electoral wins were for a legacy senate seat in a D +11 state.

    I can’t shake the feeling that she’s still a paper tiger.

    Yep and she spent an obscene amount of money to win re-election in a blue state with no real opposition. And then turned around a spent so much money in Iowa to come in 3rd in 2008 that her campaign was broke. The 2008 debt is still not paid off completely and the Clintons have been whining for years that Obama won’t help her get rid of her debt. She is going to need a record-breaking amount of money to even be competitive in the general. She has too many friends that will take huge consulting fees like they did in 2008 and not have any of the GOTV operations that Obama had in 2008 or 2012.

    Plus, she is bad on the stump, give mediocre speeches and is an average debater. Yet, anyone who runs against her in the Dem primary is considered a traitor to the party. Give me a break. O’Malley, Patrick or Mallory could all beat Hillary in the primary if they get the right team around them.

  44. 44
    Mandalay says:

    Penn’s prediction last week:

    Thursday’s elections in Britain could be a harbinger of what is likely to come to America in the not-too-distant future: new movements and even parties that shake up the political system. Cleggmania shows that even the most tradition-bound electoral systems are facing the pressures of rapid change made possible by modern communications.

    The British voters last week:

    Nick Clegg was left humiliated today after the Lib Dems were beaten by the Elvis Party in a by-election. More voters backed a candidate calling for a 30% discount in brothels for pensioners than Mr Clegg’s party in the election to Nottingham City Council.

    I am sure that Penn will now be advising Hillary Clinton to form a breakaway Elvis Party which advocates brothel discounts for senior citizens. What could possibly go wrong?

  45. 45
    John O says:

    I’ve always been amused that I trust Bill way more than I trust Hillary.

    I do not find her particularly inspiring. However, I find her brilliant, cunning, and competent. She’d be fine outside of her native hawkishness, and it’s interesting to contemplate how many moderate and pissed off GOP women she would draw.

    It would make me happy if she decided not to bother, that’s for sure. Fresh faces favor Dems.

  46. 46
    Cervantes says:

    @evolved beyond the fist mistermix:

    I knew that Mark Penn had been promoted to Microsoft’s new “Chief Strategy Officer”, but I didn’t know that he was responsible for the “Scroogled” campaign

    Some other things he and his people have done that ought to be recalled: (1) on behalf of Facebook, planting articles in the media criticizing Google; (2) on behalf of the government of Colombia, advocating a US free-trade agreement while also working for a US presidential candidate (HRC) nominally opposed to that agreement (she later switched); and (3) on behalf of Ukraine’s ruling party, making the case for its continuation in power and its treatment of its political opponents.

  47. 47
    Paul in KY says:

    @askew: Those guys should run in Primaries. Want some good competition to ID the best person for the general election.

  48. 48
    askew says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    The level of vitriol that HRC inspires is surprising to me. I am not chomping at the bit for her to run and I don’t know that I would vote for her in a primary, but, jesus, I would crawl over glass to vote for her over anyone the the GOP would put out there. I wonder whether much of the dislike stems from a reaction to the PUMA idiots of 2008 rather than a reaction to HRC herself. I would say it is important not to become a mirror image of the PUMAs in order to punish HRC for her supporters’ actions. HRC and Bill jumped on the Obama train once he won and campaigned well on his behalf.

    According to Halperin/Henneman (I know), Bill refused to do a damn thing in 2012 until Obama’s team raised enough money to settle most of Hillary’s 2008 debt. And that did happen prior to Bill’s campaigning for Obama in 2012.

    My vitriol for Hillary is due completely to her. She is a mediocre politician with almost no accomplishments to her name who tells ridiculous lies (Bosnia sniper fire,responsible for FMLA, involved in Irish Peace talks, etc.). She also seems completely out of touch with today’s Democratic Party, is a war hawk and is way too old to be running for president. Other than that, I am sure she’s a lovely person.

  49. 49
    Jeremy says:

    I disagree with the bet that if Clinton wins she will be a one term president. She might but I doubt it. It’s very hard to knock off incumbent presidents that’s why if you look at history they are rarely defeated. In recent history only Carter and Bush Sr. failed to win a second term but pretty much every elected president in modern times has won a second term.

    Also the lack of leaders on the Republican side and the demographic shifts will only make things worse for the Republican party over the next couple general election cycles.

  50. 50
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Marc:

    That was my thought, too. We’re supposed to still hate McAuliffe after he ran a left-of-center campaign in Virginia and won?

  51. 51
    Marc says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    In my case, I’m just stumped when I try to figure out what she stands for. On most issues she apparently agrees with the Democratic party consensus (e.g. civil rights for women and minorities); she’s fully on board with the Obama foreign policy, except that she’s more deferential to Israel and hawkish on Iran. She might be an improvement on Obama on some issues, but I have little sense of that – and I felt very much the same way in 2008, with the addition that she was wrong on Iraq and Obama was not. That was the tie breaker for me.

  52. 52
    Suffern ACE says:

    @Gin & Tonic: Also in 2000, New York was not D+11. Yes, it was trending favorably, but it was also electing Republicans statewide as well as to the mayoralship of it’s largest city.

  53. 53
    CONGRATULATIONS! says:

    She will be the Dem candidate and she will run. You can decide whether you want to vote for the Democrat, or the Republican.

    Wish she had better taste in baggage, but you take what you get.

  54. 54
    Jeremy says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: I agree. I’m not a big Hillary Clinton fan but I know that she would be a thousand times, heck a million times better than anyone coming out of today’s radical republican party. Also I disagree with the idea that Hillary Clinton would be a weak General Election candidate. She has high approval numbers in swing states like Ohio and Florida, and she has a chance to match President Obama’s electoral margin or even surpass it.

  55. 55
    Marc says:

    @Mnemosyne: Yeah, McAuliffe has won clemency for any turdishness pre-2013. We’re supposed to encourage the centrists when they move in our direction, right? And when they follow our strategies and win.

    ETA: Just to be clear, I’m not the same Marc @51.

  56. 56
    srv says:

    Unfortunately, Hillary is going to be held to the standard of having to fix all the things she wouldn’t have screwed up if Democrats had made the right choice the first time.

    But it sure will drive the wingnuts insane, so whatever the anti-cleek law is.

  57. 57
    askew says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    That was my thought, too. We’re supposed to still hate McAuliffe after he ran a left-of-center campaign in Virginia and won?

    Can’t say I am too impressed with McAuliffe for his VA win. I think any Dem candidate would have won that one. McDonnell was under a cloud of scandal and the GOP nominee was a complete nutter. Plus, I’ll never forgive him for telling Hillary that she should stay in and fight after the Dem primary was over. He was the reason we got to see Hillary lose her mind giving that speech in the underground bunker in 2008. If I was running against her, I’d run clips of that pile of crazy along with clips about her Bosnia sniper fire lie starting now and remind everyone exactly who Hillary is.

    That said, of course I’ll vote for her if she wins the nod. Until then, I am vocally against her running and being our nominee and hope she’ll decide against running or that one of our better and younger politicians beats her in the primary.

  58. 58
    Cervantes says:

    @askew:

    Plus, she is bad on the stump, give[s] mediocre speeches and is an average debater.

    I’d appreciate counter-indications if anyone has any.

  59. 59
    Joel says:

    Falling upwards.

  60. 60
    Jeremy says:

    @Mnemosyne: Yeah I don’t get it. TMac embraced and ran with the Obama campaign playbook. He had people on his team who were affiliated with the Obama campaign.

  61. 61
    Cervantes says:

    @Marc:

    Yeah, McAuliffe has won clemency for any turdishness pre-2013

    I’m happy to suspend judgment until he completes his (first) term as governor.

  62. 62
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Marc: I agree with you on that. I voted for Obama in the Ohio Primary in 2008 for many of the same reasons. I am concerned about HRC age and health; being SoS seemed to wear her down – imagine what being president would do. At this point, she doesn’t have my primary vote; of course, no one else has it either.

  63. 63
    Paul in KY says:

    @askew: I was impressed by Gov. McAuliffe’s win. 1st time as an actual candidate. Had coattails. Ran as a proud Democrat. Someone who likes to tell people how much better the Democrats are for them than these crypto-facist Repubs.

    Don’t let perfect be the enemy of good.

  64. 64
    cleek says:

    @CONGRATULATIONS!:

    She will be the Dem candidate

    2006 called; they say you’ve counted your chickens a wee bit early.

  65. 65

    @Yatsuno:

    we just let Hillary waltz into the inevitability chair

    That was supposed to how things worked out in 2008…

  66. 66
    Mnemosyne says:

    @askew:

    Plus, I’ll never forgive him for telling Hillary that she should stay in and fight after the Dem primary was over. He was the reason we got to see Hillary lose her mind giving that speech in the underground bunker in 2008.

    Dude. It’s 2014. You are going to have to give up your resentments of 6 years ago at some point, or you are going to be unable to function for the 2016 elections.

    McAuliffe has obviously moved on from his views in 2008 since he decided to run left-of-center last year. You need to do the same.

  67. 67
    askew says:

    @Paul in KY:

    @askew: I was impressed by Gov. McAuliffe’s win. 1st time as an actual candidate. Had coattails. Ran as a proud Democrat. Someone who likes to tell people how much better the Democrats are for them than these crypto-facist Repubs.

    Don’t let perfect be the enemy of good.

    I don’t expect him to be perfect, but he has a long history of being slimy so I can’t say that I am a fan. And I am not loving Hillary associating with anyone from the Carville, Penn, Ickes, Wolfson, McAuliffe circle of scum. Doesn’t show that she’s learned a thing.

  68. 68
    Bobby Thomson says:

    @askew:

    The 2008 debt is still not paid off completely and the Clintons have been whining for years that Obama won’t help her get rid of her debt.

    Survey says you aren’t exactly Mr. Current Affairs. That debt was retired more thana year ago by Obama’s fundraisers.

  69. 69
    Marc says:

    @Cervantes: Gladly.

    @askew:

    She is going to need a record-breaking amount of money to even be competitive in the general. She has too many friends that will take huge consulting fees like they did in 2008 and not have any of the GOTV operations that Obama had in 2008 or 2012.

    Plus, she is bad on the stump, give mediocre speeches and is an average debater.

    Any Dem candidate is going to need record-breaking amounts of money to be competitive in the general. She’s one of the few who will be able to raise it. And her high public recognition should do a lot to immunize her against the tide of opposition money coming her way.

    I agree that she’s a mediocre speaker, but she was a far better debater than Obama was in 2007 and 2008–he had to raise his game to match her. She’s probably gotten rusty since then, which is one reason why a contested primary would do her and the party a world of good.

    I’m not staunchly pro-Clinton. I have serious reservations about her foreign policy and her past performance. If she runs like the Secretary of State Clinton, I could support her (and more importantly, cross the Potomac to volunteer for her in the general). If she runs like the 2008 candidate, I’m going to have a much harder time. I hope somebody mounts a strong primary challenge just to get her in shape and keep her running to the left. But I don’t understand the rush to poison the well before we’ve even seen how she runs.

  70. 70
    Amir Khalid says:

    The sense i get from this discussion is that Hillary is respected more than loved by Democratic voters (who comment at Balloon Juice). But even those who respect her are concerned about her ability as a candidate, particularly since in 2008 she lost a primary campaign that the smart money expected her to win.

    Were Barack Obama and his freakishly superb organisation not in the race, I suspect Hillary would have won the 2008 nomination, and probably the election as well. (And made a pretty good president, too — better than George Walker Bush, at any rate.) This time, that organisation of his will definitely throw its weight behind the Democratic nominee, which will be a tremendous help to that person’s chances.

    We don’t know yet who else will run for President in 2016. Perhaps a better Democratic candidate will turn up, perhaps not. My own hope is that a full-time job at Microsoft will keep Mark Penn away from “helping” her or any other Democratic candidate.

  71. 71
    Ruckus says:

    @Frankensteinbeck:
    Too late. Or maybe I should say, this has been going on for a while with MS products. I’m sure it has gotten worse, mainly because I’ve never seen it get better. And yes I’ve had to reformat a hard drive and even replace a hard drive and I don’t click on anything I don’t know. Yesterday another poster put up a link to his local paper and it came up suspicious. It wasn’t nefarious but I’m not going to be the one to find out. Been there, done less, got screwed.

  72. 72
    askew says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Dude. It’s 2014. You are going to have to give up your resentments of 6 years ago at some point, or you are going to be unable to function for the 2016 elections.

    McAuliffe has obviously moved on from his views in 2008 since he decided to run left-of-center last year. You need to do the same.

    It’s not resentment. I just remember her and her campaign’s behavior during 2008. You show your true self when you are down. And they showed themselves to be scum. Doesn’t mean I won’t vote for her in the general. I just won’t be surprised if she loses the general or if she turns out to be a disaster as president. And I’ll find something more productive to do with my time than bitch about her online. Until she wins the Dem primary though, I am going to bitch.

  73. 73
    catclub says:

    @askew: “but he has a long history of being slimy”

    Which ‘he’? I suspect you mean McAuliffe, but the news was about Mac’s political advisor, whose name has not been on anyones lips here.

  74. 74
    Mandalay says:

    @askew:

    And I am not loving Hillary associating with anyone from the Carville, Penn, Ickes, Wolfson, McAuliffe circle of scum.

    How could you leave Lanny Davis off that list of the loathed?

  75. 75
    Marc says:

    @askew:

    And I am not loving Hillary associating with anyone from the Carville, Penn, Ickes, Wolfson, McAuliffe circle of scum. Doesn’t show that she’s learned a thing.

    I’m not a fan of the first four either. But hiring someone from McAuliffe’s successful (read: history-defying) political team shows that she has learned from recent events. Maybe we should all follow suit.

  76. 76
    Rob in CT says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate:

    Malloy: not a good speaker.

    No chance Hillary gets my primary vote, while having a near 100% chance of getting my general vote.

    Yup.

  77. 77
    askew says:

    @Marc:

    Any Dem candidate is going to need record-breaking amounts of money to be competitive in the general. She’s one of the few who will be able to raise it. And her high public recognition should do a lot to immunize her against the tide of opposition money coming her way.

    I agree that she’s a mediocre speaker, but she was a far better debater than Obama was in 2007 and 2008–he had to raise his game to match her. She’s probably gotten rusty since then, which is one reason why a contested primary would do her and the party a world of good.

    I’m not staunchly pro-Clinton. I have serious reservations about her foreign policy and her past performance. If she runs like the Secretary of State Clinton, I could support her (and more importantly, cross the Potomac to volunteer for her in the general). If she runs like the 2008 candidate, I’m going to have a much harder time. I hope somebody mounts a strong primary challenge just to get her in shape and keep her running to the left. But I don’t understand the rush to poison the well before we’ve even seen how she runs.

    If she was so good at raising money, her campaign wouldn’t have gone broke in 2008 and she wouldn’t have needed Obama to bail out her campaign debt. She’s going to have the same problem as Romney had in the general election, too many big dollar consultants taking away money from GOTV operations and ad budgets.

    The reason I am “posioning the well” now is too shut down the inevitable talk about Hillary 2016. I think that is damaging to our party and to the electoral process. There should be a vigorous debate in the primary and the Hillary supporters in 2008 did everything they could to push Obama and Edwards out of the primary before the first vote was cast. And there are legitimate concerns about her that should be discussed now before she runs like her age, her slim record of accomplishments and her character issues.

  78. 78
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Jeremy: I disagree with the bet that if Clinton wins she will be a one term president.

    At the end of her hypothetical first term she will be 73 years old. She’s had concrete health issues already, and does not appear, even at age 66, to have a great deal of stamina. It might not be inconceivable for her to stand down after one (if she gets one.)

  79. 79
    EconWatcher says:

    I’m liking Gillibrand for 2016. Fresh face, and seems on the ball. But I don’t live in NY. Am I wrong?

  80. 80
    askew says:

    @Mandalay:

    How could you leave Lanny Davis off that list of the loathed?

    Forgot about him. The Clintons have so much slime surrounding them it is hard to keep track of all of it.

    I am actually most interested to see where the top Obama people land and if O’Malley who is surely running can convince any of them to take a chance on his campaign.

    @EconWatcher:

    I’m liking Gillibrand for 2016. Fresh face, and seems on the ball. But I don’t live in NY. Am I wrong?

    She won’t run if Hillary runs. Basically, the entire field is frozen until Hillary makes up her mind while the GOP field is already up and running.

  81. 81
    Cervantes says:

    @Marc:

    Wait, is hiring Terry McAuliffe’s political director a problem now?

    Other way around.

    Brynne Craig had worked for HRC, for Obama, for OfA, and for the DCCC, all before McAuliffe hired her.

  82. 82
    Cervantes says:

    @EconWatcher: She’s OK. I do not appreciate the work she did as an attorney for the tobacco companies, but that’s just me.

  83. 83
    Gene108 says:

    @askew:

    I have relatives working for the state of MD. O’Malley’s raided the state pension fund to launch his pre-K iniative.

    The MD roll out of the ACA was/is horrible.

    I do not want him promoted.

  84. 84
    Paul in KY says:

    @askew: At least he wasn’t in the Shrum camp. Some of the guys you mentioned actually won races.

  85. 85
    Roxy says:

    Not a big fan of Hilary also. I will vote for her in the general election. Heck I will vote for any Democratic candidate in the general election. Why? Two words Supreme Court.

  86. 86
    Marc says:

    @askew: Clinton raised a ton of money in 2007 and 2008, she just spent it faster than she raised it. That’s a huge problem if she repeats the pattern, just as hiring from the same circle of grifters would be a huge problem if she repeats that pattern. But you’re making some pretty bold predictions about her management of a campaign she hasn’t even begun yet.

    I agree that we should have a vigorous debate about the next nominee. I would prefer that debate to be grounded in reality, not prophecies of doom and half-remembered grudges from the last decade.

  87. 87
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Marc: Mark my words there will be mirror image PUMAs around if HRC runs. There will be people who carry butthurt from 2008 until their dying day – certainly far longer than BHO or HRC will have done.

  88. 88
    Marc says:

    @Cervantes: Thanks, good to know. Makes all the hyperventilating about McAuliffe look even more ridiculous.

  89. 89

    @Omnes Omnibus: I just did not like how she conducted herself in 2008 primaries, plus do not want a rerun of the 90s with Clinton and his bimbo eruptions.

    ETA: I have just never been an HRC fan, but I am sure she will be better than any hairball the Republican base coughs up as their nominee. So will definitely support her in the general election.

  90. 90
    Marc says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Hopefully they’ll be about as numerous as the PUMAs, and about as influential.

    I do look forward to nominee Rand Paul running an ad bragging about his endorsement from Cynthia McKinney.

  91. 91
    geg6 says:

    @aimai:

    I could have written this comment myself, it’s so exactly in line with my own thoughts.

    If she’s the candidate, I’ll climb over broken glass to vote for her. And I’m not interested in any Ralph Naders, no matter how much my self-annointed “progressive” betters scream “sellout!” at me.

  92. 92
    Cervantes says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    My own hope is that a full-time job at Microsoft will keep Mark Penn away from “helping” her or any other Democratic candidate.

    Yes, we can hope he keeps that full-time job.

    Yet he was consulting for both WJC and Microsoft simultaneously in the ’90s.

  93. 93
    Jeremy says:

    @Gin & Tonic: Yeah It’s possible but I doubt it. Eisenhower had health issues with his heart and he still stayed on as president. Reagan was in his 70’s and ran for re-election and won by landslide, and FDR had issues but he continued to run for president and he won landslide victories.

    Like I said before. It’s hard to beat an incumbent president and rarely does an incumbent president decide not to run for re-election.

  94. 94
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @schrodinger’s cat: Again, I agree with this sentiment. There are very real reasons to oppose (or favor) Clinton being the candidate. I would vastly prefer it if we could keep the discussion on the level of the real pros and cons rather than leftover emotion form 2008. I also want a unicorn.

  95. 95
    Mandalay says:

    @Gin & Tonic:

    and does not appear, even at age 66, to have a great deal of stamina.

    Yep. When she was SoS the media was forever gushing about how hard she was working, and how many miles she had flown, and how everyone had trouble keeping up with her. And every time she appeared on TV she looked like death warmed up.

    I have an insider’s perspective, and the older I get the less I want an old president.

  96. 96
    Ruckus says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:
    These are my concerns as well. I’ve worked in somewhat high stress jobs for a long time and she and I are within a year of the same age. And I’m beat up. Now I know that doesn’t directly correlate and that some people handle aging much better. She doesn’t look like one who does to me. I have no idea, OK that’s not true, I do have a pretty good idea, the presidency would kill me, even if I might be grand at it. Don’t bother, I’m not saying I’d be good or even capable, just that the job would kill me. In this regard(and only in this regard!) I look at Hillary the same as McCain, the second slot is very important.
    Plus I look around at all the old people and I want someone younger. The future of the country is important, I want someone with more of a future to be in charge, not someone always looking backwards at what never was.

  97. 97
    slag says:

    I’d definitely prefer her as President over her as head of the Democratic Party. Sadly, we can’t pick that option.

  98. 98
    Gorgon Zola says:

    “Update: And, like clockwork, a skidmark from another turd in the Clinton orbit:”

    Throw in a banana and you have yourself a metaphor smoothie.

  99. 99

    I do like Hillary’s new hair. Is she still wearing her Romulan Senator outfits? Wearing the same color head to toe makes her look much larger than she is, hopefully she has hired a new stylist.

  100. 100
    askew says:

    @Gene108:

    He also got rid of the death penalty, passed a DREAM Act, gun control, gay marriage, got pre-K in place and a host of other liberal accomplishments. Not thrilled with the raiding of the pension funds and could give a shit about problems with the MD healthcare site as long as people are able to get healthcare it’s a nothingburger by 2016.

  101. 101
    geg6 says:

    @Marc:

    And I agree with you, too. Seriously? Terry Mac ran as a full-throated liberal. Maybe he was lying, but I don’t really give a shit since all politicians lie, one way or another. He has, so far, kept his promises (granted, it’s much too soon to judge yet).

  102. 102
    Elizabelle says:

    @aimai:

    Good comment (#13). You are correct.

  103. 103
    Gene108 says:

    @Marc:

    The Iraq war vote was the tie breaker for a lot of folks, who decided to back Obama over Hillary. All the discussion over campaign tactics is peripheral to the Iraq vote for Democratic primary voters in 2008.

    That vote broke Hillary’s campaign.

  104. 104
    askew says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    @Marc: Mark my words there will be mirror image PUMAs around if HRC runs. There will be people who carry butthurt from 2008 until their dying day – certainly far longer than BHO or HRC will have done.

    I doubt it. Obama supporters have been team players since the beginning. As long as Hillary and Bill don’t start race-baiting again or smearing the Obamas personally, there won’t be any problems. And Obama’s staff has always put the Democratic Party first unlike the Clintonites who only care about the Clintons and their bottom line.

  105. 105
    Jeremy says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: It kind of reminds me of the JFK faction vs. LBJ faction that continues to this day.

  106. 106
    Ruckus says:

    One thing I’ve noticed is that so many do not want to support Hillery in any primary, yet we will vote for her in the general. If she gets no support in the primaries she won’t be running in the general. She may be able to raise huge amounts of money but what good will that do? And would that suck money away from someone else who might beat her in primaries but would have nothing left for the general?
    Just asking.

  107. 107
    askew says:

    @Mandalay:

    Yep. When she was SoS the media was forever gushing about how hard she was working, and how many miles she had flown, and how everyone had trouble keeping up with her. And every time she appeared on TV she looked like death warmed up.

    I have an insider’s perspective, and the older I get the less I want an old president.

    What’s interesting is that she still looks exhausted after leaving the post a year ago. And she hasn’t gotten back the politician polish she had prior to taking the SoS role. So maybe she isn’t running?

  108. 108
    geg6 says:

    @Cervantes:

    I didn’t hear the speech (I was an Obama voter before he even decided to run) she gave here in W. PA while running in 2008, but the people who did were ecstatic over it. There are a LOT of women I know of a certain age who absolutely adore her and who would do anything to vote for her. Some of them are even GOPers.

  109. 109
    Cervantes says:

    “Leftover emotion” (from anything, not merely politics) is real and has to be dealt with, discussed, talked out — not merely criticized or dismissed. In general one can say it’s a job for professionals to handle — but most of the time that’s not true! If I may borrow a borrowed notion from someone who used to live in the White House: “It takes a village.”

  110. 110
    Ruckus says:

    @Marc:
    But this is why we don’t elect people without a history. We need to know how they act, what they believe. Right now Hillary’s(and Bill’s) history is all we have to go on, and it’s not that pretty.

  111. 111

    I like the prospect of Bill Clinton returning to national spotlight even less than I like Hillary. What are economic policy stances, does anyone know? Is she a neo-liberal like Bill.

  112. 112
    askew says:

    @schrodinger’s cat:

    No one really knows what her true positions are. She didn’t do much of anything in the Senate that we can judge her on except for voting for the Iraq War but so did most of the Dem Senators. Her 2008 campaign wasn’t about issues as much as it was about trying to scare people about Obama. She’s now giving speeches to Goldman Sachs for money.

    She’s said enough publicly to know that she will be a war-hawk on foreign policy and a huge step back from Obama in that regard. Domestically, we have a big question mark.

  113. 113
    geg6 says:

    @askew:

    What’s interesting is that she still looks exhausted after leaving the post a year ago. And she hasn’t gotten back the politician polish she had prior to taking the SoS role.

    Really? I don’t remember where I saw it, but I just saw an article with a photo about a week ago about Hillary speaking at some women’s group dinner. She looked fantastic and happy, not tired or exhausted at all. And the article said she wowed them with her speech, especially her humor.

    I’m not and never will be a PUMA, but you are just being ridiculous here. Hillary didn’t look good after her health issue at the end of her SoS stint, but I have not seen or heard of any appearances where she looks or sounds out of touch or exhausted or anything of that nature. In fact, the most recent articles and pics I’ve seen tell a different tale about how excited she is to be a grandmother soon and how she’s speaking to dozens of groups all around the country. All indications that she plans to run.

  114. 114
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    A waltz through the Google suggests that HRC has yet to direct even the mildest rebuke at Republican policies or practices. Though it could be argued that it’s not yet the time for her to criticize their obstructionism she definitely has the standing to refute the R’s lunatic foreign policy prescriptions. Her old man was far too cozy with the other side and although she sure isn’t Bill, her current lack of interest in criticizing the opposition is disturbing.

  115. 115
    Mandalay says:

    @Gene108:

    The Iraq war vote was the tie breaker for a lot of folks, who decided to back Obama over Hillary.

    In more ways than one for me. It certainly wasn’t a point in her favor that she had been for it while Obama was against it.

    But even more damning was her slipperiness on the whole issue. She wouldn’t acknowledge that Obama had been right and she had been wrong, she wouldn’t apologize for her vote, and she descended into absurd word play when confronted about her original vote. If ever there was an example of a politician not taking responsibility for their actions that was it for me.

  116. 116
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @geg6:

    Making speeches to friendly audiences on the rubber chicken circuit seems a wee bit less taxing than being POTUS.

  117. 117
    Cervantes says:

    @Mandalay:

    I have an insider’s perspective, and the older I get the less I want an old president.

    Agree, and felt the same way about various other candidates, too.

  118. 118
    dogwood says:

    Until Democrats wake up and realize that significant change cannot happen in this country without control of Congress and state legislatures, the progressive wing of the party will be forever whining about their sellout presidents as they pine for some leader like Elizabeth Warren who would be no more effective under the same circumstances. The number one job of the party right now is to create a base that is as loyal and reliable as the Republican base. That’s how you bring about desired change.

  119. 119
    Mandalay says:

    @geg6:

    In fact, the most recent articles and pics I’ve seen tell a different tale about how excited she is to be a grandmother soon and how she’s speaking to dozens of groups all around the country. All indications that she plans to run.

    Your source is what? People Magazine? The NYT society pages?

    If becoming a grandmother is an indication of running for president then she will be facing a hell of a lot of competition.

  120. 120
    MomSense says:

    I think her ability as a campaigner is misoverestimated (thanks W!). I’m hoping for a good field of candidates for the nomination.

  121. 121
    askew says:

    @geg6:

    Really? I don’t remember where I saw it, but I just saw an article with a photo about a week ago about Hillary speaking at some women’s group dinner. She looked fantastic and happy, not tired or exhausted at all. And the article said she wowed them with her speech, especially her humor.

    I’m not and never will be a PUMA, but you are just being ridiculous here. Hillary didn’t look good after her health issue at the end of her SoS stint, but I have not seen or heard of any appearances where she looks or sounds out of touch or exhausted or anything of that nature. In fact, the most recent articles and pics I’ve seen tell a different tale about how excited she is to be a grandmother soon and how she’s speaking to dozens of groups all around the country. All indications that she plans to run.

    Sorry, I think she still doesn’t look good. Little make-up, hair still a mess, etc. That’s fine for a regular person, but for a person running for president, you expect her to look better than that. She certainly did in all of her previous campaigns. To me, she still looks tired.

    And being excited at becoming a grandma? Well, then she’s definitely running. What does that have to do with anything?

  122. 122
    Gene108 says:

    @askew:

    The DREAM Act and getting rid of the death penalty are interesting, but the gist of what I gather about O’Malley is he is checking off boxes to appeal to 2016 primary voters, while ignoring the long term fiscal health of MD.

    Seems like a Dem version of Christie, broadly speaking. Christie vetoed legalizing gay marriage in N J and other things to appeal to Republican primary voters, while the boring, long term, fiscal problems NJ has get papered over by creative bookkeeping.

    For all of Clinton’s faults the 1993 tax bill he passed did balance the budget, by the end of his second term. If a competent President succeeded him we would have had the money to reinvest in our country.

    Maybe Hillary can push through a similar tax bill that would return this country to a good fiscal position.

  123. 123
    kcdmv says:

    @geg6: One problem with O’Malley is that a large percentage of the people that live in his state,couldn’t give you that list. And quite frankly for a governor looking to move up, with little to no profile being bold might have helped him more.

  124. 124
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @Mandalay:

    I’m 65 and I, too, don’t want a geezer POTUS.

  125. 125
    Cervantes says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate:

    A waltz through the Google suggests that HRC has yet to direct even the mildest rebuke at Republican policies or practices.

    She endorsed long-time friend Terry McAuliffe last year in Virginia, so there was some rhetoric associated with that.

    (Notice that she did not do the same for, say, Barbara Buono in New Jersey.)

  126. 126
    Gene108 says:

    @Mandalay:

    Kerry did similar verbal gymnastics in 2004 over his 2002 vote.

    Obama had the luxury of not being in the US Senate in 2002 and faced a different political equation post 9/11 than Kerry or Clinton or other Dems in Congress.

    Who knows how Obama would have voted in 2002 as a US Senator?

    Keep in mind he was to the right of Hillary on gun control and gay marriage in 2008.

  127. 127
    Gene108 says:

    @Cervantes:

    Nobody endorsed Buono. She got dicked over by the Dem Party at every level,

  128. 128
    kcdmv says:

    @askew: @geg6: One problem with O’Malley is that a large percentage of the people that live in his state,couldn’t give you that list. And quite frankly for a governor looking to move up, with little to no profile being bold might have helped him more.

  129. 129
    kcdmv says:

    @askew: @geg6: One problem with O’Malley is that a large percentage of the people that live in his state,couldn’t give you that list. And quite frankly for a governor looking to move up, with little to no profile being bold might have helped him more.

  130. 130
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @Gene108:

    For all of Clinton’s faults the 1993 tax bill he passed did balance the budget, by the end of his second term.

    If ol’ Bill hadn’t signed the CFMA into law the meltdown of 2008 wouldn’t have had the catastrophic effects that it did. His signing of that bill and of DOMA were both repugnant and unnecessary.

  131. 131
    Peter says:

    @Frankensteinbeck: …that’s simply not true. Search Protect is pretty easy to get rid of. I caught it myself the other day and I was completely rid of it in half an hour thanks to googling ‘how do I get rid of search protect’ on my phone.

    It took the use of multiple malware detection and eradication programs, as these things tend to do, but it was a pretty straightforward process. It’s not a ruddy rootkit.

  132. 132
    askew says:

    @Gene108:

    See I don’t care that he’s checking off boxes as long as he’s getting stuff done. And he’s done tons to improve education and the economy in Maryland. He has a strong record of accomplishment which is the exact opposite of Christie and Hillary. Hillary’s really done nothing on her own. She had no major accomplishments in the Senate and other than racking up frequent flier miles as SoS doesn’t really have any big wins there either. O’Malley has a long list of accomplishments to run on including getting a balanced budget without pursuing austerity. He also raised taxes on the wealthy which is incredibly popular with the general public.

    And Hillary is not Bill. She doesn’t get to take credit for his accomplishments though she and her supporters have certainly tried.

  133. 133
    Cervantes says:

    @Gene108: Sure, but one wonders what Hillary’s calculation was.

    As Higgs Boson’s Mate observed, she has not taken many recent opportunities to criticize Republicans.

  134. 134
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Elizabelle: I hear you but anything is better than the scary, psycho clowns who will be running against her. If President Hillary Clinton tries to take any praise for the accomplishments of President Obama, I’m sure scores of his supporters will gently remind her to simmer down. Hopefully, she’ll tally up many accomplishments of her own during her two terms.

  135. 135
    Mandalay says:

    @Gene108: All fair points, but none of that addresses my real concerns which were integrity and character issues that Clinton revealed – for me at least – by her position(s) on Iraq. Not so much her original vote, as everything that followed.

    We are all rightly contemptuous here over the state of denial from Cheney, Rumsfeld et al over Iraq. Well Clinton is certainly not in their league, but I would have like to have seen a little more regret, remorse and apology from her. The absence is damning for me, but YMMV.

  136. 136
    Marc says:

    @Gene108: I know. I was one of them. And if a better alternative presents him- or herself in 2016, I’m willing to support them. But their case will have to be a lot stronger than eight-year-old grudges and whining about Mark Penn.

  137. 137
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @Gene108:

    Clinton doesn’t get a pass from me on her non-endorsement of Buono just because none of the other Dems endorsed her either. She let down a fellow Democrat and, to compound the FAIL, she let down a female Democrat. I can’t get all misty -eyed over a first woman president who doesn’t even support other women in her own party.

  138. 138
    Mandalay says:

    @askew:

    She doesn’t get to take credit for his accomplishments though she and her supporters have certainly tried.

    It’s even worse than that. She can fairly be credited with one of his major failures – health care reform.

    Obama succeeded where she had failed.

  139. 139
    Cervantes says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate:

    She let down a fellow Democrat

    Exactly, and someone should ask her why.

    “Hillary Clinton wrote me a nice letter — after I lost,” Ms. Buono said, pointing out that the potential Democratic standard-bearer did nothing to support the candidacy of the party’s first female nominee for governor of New Jersey. (“You and I are no strangers to the challenges of seeking and holding public office,” read the letter [in part], signed, “Hillary.”)

    That was in the NYT (February 11).

  140. 140
    Mandalay says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate:

    Clinton doesn’t get a pass from me on her non-endorsement of Buono

    Buono was running against Christie, and Christie’s backers are the same mob who finance Hillary Clinton – the one percenters on Wall Street.

    Hillary Clinton is not going to bite the hand that feed$ her by supporting an opponent of Christie.

  141. 141

    @MomSense: I was neutral regarding her campaign in 2008, early in the primaries, till I saw her crying just before NH primary, also going on and on about what her campaign meant for women in general. Get over yourself, lady.

    This was before the working class white voters and coming under sniper fire business.

  142. 142
    Samuel Knight says:

    Bizarre the level of antipathy to HRC – politicians always make weird choices, a lot of times a byproduct of being caught in a monied bubble. But there are lots of fascinating notes on this whole Penn thing:

    1) What the heck is Microsoft thinking. He more-or-less lost HRC the Presidency. Obama’s team were good, but we saw in both Presidential votes that when pressed they made mistakes. Penn sat there and just let them rattle off the caucuses.

    2) Clinton is stunningly far ahead of any candidate right now – both GOP and Dems. It’s a much bigger gap than in 2008.

    3) Guessing that part of this is a general voter reaction – you know both Bush and Obama were basically untested, one was a disaster and the other was OK. So maybe a tried and true hand would be a good idea.

    4) Bill and Hillary could be potentially huge in the mid-terms. That will give them a lot of IOUs.

  143. 143
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @Samuel Knight:

    Bill and Hillary could be potentially huge in the mid-terms.Bill and Hillary could be potentially huge in the mid-terms.

    And in our next episode, HBM struggles valiantly to not make the obvious rejoinder.

  144. 144
    Cervantes says:

    @schrodinger’s cat:

    till I saw her crying just before NH primary, also going on and on about what her campaign meant for women in general

    For what it’s worth, neither of those things bothered me.

  145. 145
    the Conster says:

    @Mandalay:

    and my favorite from that awful time in 2008, Haim Saban. She’s a neocon in her heart of hearts. I hate the idea of having to vote for her, and having Bill running around in the background. Ugh.

  146. 146
    askew says:

    @Mandalay:

    It’s even worse than that. She can fairly be credited with one of his major failures – health care reform.

    Obama succeeded where she had failed.

    What’s even worse is that Hillary backers still insist that she’d be a better president than Obama who is naive and can’t get anything done. And it’s not fair to count Hillary’s healthcare debacle against her.

    4) Bill and Hillary could be potentially huge in the mid-terms. That will give them a lot of IOUs.

    If Bill and Hillary are loyal Dems they should be working on the midterm even if it doesn’t give them IOUs. They need to show that they can work for the party when there isn’t something in it for them. If they continue the current trend, they’ll be doing events for politicians who backed Hillary in 2008 only.

  147. 147
    Cervantes says:

    @Samuel Knight:

    Bill and Hillary could be potentially huge in the mid-terms. That will give them a lot of IOUs.

    I think that’s possible but: (1) Are they doing anything relevant now? And (2) Who will be holding those IOUs when all is said and done?

  148. 148
    Gene108 says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate:

    CFMA was a big mistake.

    I am neutral on DOMA, because gay marriage was not even on the horizon, when it was signed.

    I generally view Bill’s two terms as an opportunity lost to undo Reagan’s dictat that “government is the problem”. I think the Left did not grok how organized the Right was, especially with regards to billionaires creating poltically driven media outlets.

    Bill did want to prove government could be a solution for people’s problems, thus taking time to make FEMA functional for the first time in the agency’s history.

  149. 149
    Mandalay says:

    @Cervantes:

    Are they doing anything relevant now?

    This is a great question.

    I have few doubts that she would be a competent president, but I do doubt her ability to become a great president. She seems to have no passion, and no fire in her belly. I don’t blame her for that – she is getting towards 70, and she is filthy rich. But I do think she could/should be seen to be doing something she really cares about right now, beyond hosting gazillion dollar a plate dinners, and looking forward to the birth of her grandchild. She needs to give voters a reason to really want her to be president.

    Not that I ever would have voted for him anyway, but I had exactly the same reservation about Romney when he ran: he had loads of money, and time on his hands, but what did he actually do? Not much beyond being active in the Mormon church hierarchy, and being very involved with his family. Hardly persuasive when you want people to vote for you to be president.

  150. 150
    Samuel Knight says:

    In reply to the huge in midterms questions – read the Kentucky campaign stories. Both Bill and Hillary are working that campaign and it appears to be giving the Dems a shot.

    The other interesting angle is the one Reid is pushing – aim at the Koch brothers. For the first time that I remember a prominent Dem is acting on the simply mantra that people rarely vote for someone – they vote against someone else. So give the Dem base and independents someone to vote against – and spoiled billionares really fits that ticket.

    Hardly surprising that the White House is chatting about Dems needing to wake up and vote in the mid-terms while Reid is actually pushing an attack that might do exactly that.

  151. 151
    Paul in KY says:

    @askew: If she is running, she definitely will need to be in shape, looking her best, etc. TV is cruel to all but skinny, pretty people.

  152. 152
    Original Lee says:

    @jonas: This. I screamed at the TV a lot both then and now when certain members of the 2008 team showed up on the talking head shows. They give a whole new meaning to the phrase “universal smarm factor”.

  153. 153
    Marc says:

    @Gene108:

    the gist of what I gather about O’Malley is he is checking off boxes to appeal to 2016 primary voters, while ignoring the long term fiscal health of MD.

    I live in Maryland and that’s not my take at all. O’Malley raised taxes as soon as he came into office and took other measures to close the huge budget deficits left by his Republican predecessor. His current problem is that cutbacks in the federal government hit Maryland employment and revenues especially hard.

    He’s actually been a pretty good governor and I would have no trouble supporting him in 2016. My biggest reservation is that I don’t see how he distances himself from Clinton on foreign policy (he supported her in 2008) and that’s my greatest concern about her.

  154. 154
    The Other Chuck says:

    @VOR:

    Time to sell any Microsoft stock you may own.

    Why? They’re up over 30% with their P/E still at 14, meaning it still has a long way up to go yet. Microsoft knows this and is on a buyback spree (which might itself account for the price, but it’s not like they could go private so they’re doing it for the money). On the flip side of the coin, their earnings are still pretty mediocre and they’ve got some shenanigans going on with their cash flow that should make anyone wary (less than 10% of their cash holdings is in USD, kinda odd for a US company).

    I don’t like Microsoft either, but damn, they’re not Halliburton or Monsanto, and they’ve certainly weathered worse debacles than one moronic PR campaign.

  155. 155
    Joel says:

    @The Other Chuck: MSFT’s market value is truly expanding for the first time in over a decade. Maybe it was time to boot the old (executive) guard after all.

  156. 156
    Jasmine Bleach says:

    @dogwood:

    Until Democrats wake up and realize that significant change cannot happen in this country without control of Congress and state legislatures, the progressive wing of the party will be forever whining about their sellout presidents as they pine for some leader like Elizabeth Warren who would be no more effective under the same circumstances.

    Y’know, comments like these always bug me. A liberal president could do a hell of a lot on her own–commanding the end of spying on Americans, recalling troops, reclassifying drugs, using the FBI to go after actual lawbreakers at high levels, veto legislation that advances income inequality, etc. Not to mention use the bully pulpit to get liberal/progressive ideas heard.

    Yes, they would need Congress on their side to be dramatically effective. But, one of those leaders we “pine for” could do a hell of a lot at re-energizing things and actually bringing hope to people.

  157. 157
    Cervantes says:

    @Jasmine Bleach:

    Y’know, comments like these always bug me.

    Me, too. But you know how it is … If the non-“progressive wing of the party” weren’t “forever whining” about the “progressive wing of the party” as they “pine for” whatever it is they pine for, they might have to look for something more productive to do.

  158. 158
    ralphb says:

    @askew:

    You show your true self when you are down.

    As someone who could have voted for either one in 2008, you’ve shown yourself to be a petty vindictive prick and you’re supposedly up. Hate to see what you’d be if you were down!

  159. 159
    ralphb says:

    @askew: I doubt it. Obama supporters have been team players since the beginning.

    You’re already doing a PUMA in reverse and apparently aren’t smart enough to know it.

  160. 160
    Cervantes says:

    @ralphb: I may well be the only person reading who has no idea what a “PUMA in reverse” is.

    (“PUMA” itself I do recognize, of course.)

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