McConnell’s Cemetery Song

obvious

This is a graph (via Benen) that Rep. John Yarmuth used in a floor speech this week. It shows the change in the percentage of uninsured in each county in Kentucky. Then there’s this:

Ms. Grimes has shown no inclination to run as a liberal, though. She has dodged questions of whether she supports the Affordable Care Act, and was similarly evasive when asked recently if she supported Mr. Obama’s request for funds to ease the border immigration crisis.

Both candidates are running essentially a one-note campaign.

Ms. Grimes’s campaign has focused narrowly on the theme that Mr. McConnell has lost touch with Kentucky in his 30 years in Washington. “One of us represents the past, one of us represents the future,” Ms. Grimes shouted, pointing a finger behind her at Mr. McConnell.

The senator is running an equally narrow and safe campaign. He is doing his best to join Ms. Grimes to the hip of the unpopular president. His supporters in the boisterous crowd twirled signs with Mr. Obama’s face on one side and Ms. Grimes’s on the other. Others wore masks of Senator Harry Reid, Democrat of Nevada, the majority leader.

I don’t follow Kentucky politics, so perhaps the Grimes campaign is being smart by dodging Obamacare. Or maybe they’re waiting for a few rural hospitals to be pulled out of a sea of red ink in order to show that Kynect/Obamacare benefits more than just the poors. But I don’t understand how a political party can expect to be successful by running away from their major achievement of the last 6 years, especially in a race where the other party is building a campaign on telling lies about that achievement.

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116 replies
  1. 1
    debbie says:

    This chart + all these birthdays = Yippee!

  2. 2
    Davis X. Machina says:

    Here’s why you run away from Obama, and Obamacare.

    Politicians are as prone to fighting the last war as generals.
    Neither group are invariably wrong.

  3. 3
    Baud says:

    From what I’ve observed, it’s important to be contrite when discussing Democratic achievements in some circles, lest the memes that hold society together be undermined.

  4. 4
    rikyrah says:

    In a Subprime Bubble for Used Cars, Borrowers Pay Sky-High Rates
    By JESSICA SILVER-GREENBERG and MICHAEL CORKERY
    July 19, 2014 12:36 pm

    ……………………………….
    This is the face of the new subprime boom. Mr. Durham is one of millions of Americans with shoddy credit who are easily obtaining auto loans from used-car dealers, including some who fabricate or ignore borrowers’ abilities to repay. The loans often come with terms that take advantage of the most desperate, least financially sophisticated customers. The surge in lending and the lack of caution resemble the frenzied subprime mortgage market before its implosion set off the 2008 financial crisis.

    Auto loans to people with tarnished credit have risen more than 130 percent in the five years since the immediate aftermath of the financial crisis, with roughly one in four new auto loans last year going to borrowers considered subprime — people with credit scores at or below 640.

    The explosive growth is being driven by some of the same dynamics that were at work in subprime mortgages. A wave of money is pouring into subprime autos, as the high rates and steady profits of the loans attract investors. Just as Wall Street stoked the boom in mortgages, some of the nation’s biggest banks and private equity firms are feeding the growth in subprime auto loans by investing in lenders and making money available for loans.

    And, like subprime mortgages before the financial crisis, many subprime auto loans are bundled into complex bonds and sold as securities by banks to insurance companies, mutual funds and public pension funds — a process that creates ever-greater demand for loans.

    The New York Times examined more than 100 bankruptcy court cases, dozens of civil lawsuits against lenders and hundreds of loan documents and found that subprime auto loans can come with interest rates that can exceed 23 percent. The loans were typically at least twice the size of the value of the used cars purchased, including dozens of battered vehicles with mechanical defects hidden from borrowers. Such loans can thrust already vulnerable borrowers further into debt, even propelling some into bankruptcy, according to the court records, as well as interviews with borrowers and lawyers in 19 states.

    In another echo of the mortgage boom, The Times investigation also found dozens of loans that included incorrect information about borrowers’ income and employment, leading people who had lost their jobs, were in bankruptcy or were living on Social Security to qualify for loans that they could never afford.

    http://dealbook.nytimes.com/20.....igh-rates/

  5. 5
    Baud says:

    I also don’t think we will know for sure what kind of campaign anyone will run until after Labor Day.

  6. 6
    rikyrah says:

    How can you have a chart like this and NOT be able to hang this around Turtle’s neck and choke him with it?

    This is why I say Grimes is a lousy candidate. She should be using this to bludgeon Turtle everyday, all day on radio and tv.

  7. 7
    Baud says:

    @rikyrah:

    I blame the consumer, naturally.

  8. 8
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    But I don’t understand how a political party can expect to be successful by running away from their major achievement of the last 6 years, especially in a race where the other party is building a campaign on telling lies about that achievement.

    This drives me nuts about Dems. It’s like they don’t believe in anything other than getting reelected. Whereas Republicans don’t seem to care how toxic their positions get, they double down regardless. And get re-elected to boot.

    That says something about liberals and conservatives.

  9. 9
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Baud: Not me. I blame Obama.

  10. 10

    @rikyrah:
    Because Kentuckians are interested in who they hate first, who is ‘one of us’ second, and their own well-being third.

  11. 11
    Baud says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    Except, according to the excerpt, McConnell isn’t doing that (yet).

  12. 12
    Baud says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    As any true believer in personal responsibility would.

  13. 13
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    Whereas Republicans don’t seem to care how toxic their positions get, they double down regardless. And get re-elected to boot.

    Their toxic positions are their product. Resentment. Tribalism. Us-and-Them-ism. Team spirit, if you’re being nice.

    That’s what they’re selling. They deliver on their promises. They do what it says on the tin.

    Any political party predicated on appeals to the worst in people is going to begin, at least, every election cycle half a lap ahead, human nature being what it is. Why we don’t have even worse politics, is the wonder.

  14. 14
    pluege says:

    not all that hard to explain – there’s never been too many bright bulbs among Democrats. Unlike republicans, what you have a chance of getting with Democrats is someone who at least on the surface is a decent person and (unlike republicans) isn’t proud to be stupid, vile, and indecent.

  15. 15
    Baud says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    Why we don’t have even worse politics, is the wonder.

    I think it’s because the GOP election advantage takes the form of better turnout, particularly in off year elections. What keeps them from being even worse is that they can’t be so far ahead of the media noise as to incentivize Democratic turnout.

  16. 16
    Stillwater says:

    But I don’t understand how a political party can expect to be successful by running away from their major achievement of the last 6 years,

    Isn’t there a famous line about all politics being local? It may be that a Democrat can’t win a state-wide race by running on the ACA.

  17. 17
    ruemara says:

    I’m sorry. I missed where elected Democrats have ever really supported the ACA, Obama and any other of his achievements vocally & vociferously.

  18. 18
    spudvol says:

    Few Kentuckians know there is a connection between Kynect and the ACA.

  19. 19
    Lolis says:

    I know nothing about Kentucky. Grimes and her campaign is consistently polling well with the strategy they are using. I am going to assumer they know more about their electorate than I do. I will probably even give her money even though she is running as the definition of a blue dog because it would be so sweet to get McConnell out and it will cause a major freak out amongst the Villagers.

  20. 20
    Tommy says:

    @spudvol: You think. If I am not mistaken it is a state where things works. A far right Republican House, yet a Demarcate Governor.

  21. 21
    Cervantes says:

    @Lolis: If — and this is still a big if — ALG defeats McConnell, who do you think will lead Senate Republicans in his place?

  22. 22
    Baud says:

    @Tommy:

    Demarcate Governor

    At least you didn’t say Democrat Governor.

  23. 23
  24. 24
    weaselone says:

    @rikyrah:

    I think the comparison to the subprime mortgage crisis is significantly overhyped in the paragraphs you’re referencing. The portion of new auto lending that is subprime rose from 20% in 2009 to 27% in 2013. Some rebound from the 2009 proportion is to be expected. Also, the total number of auto loans has increased significantly as the economy recovered. Subprime loan amounts have grown along with the total amounts.

    There’s also hand waving about bundling the loans into complicated securities. There’s nothing inherently wrong with bundling auto loans into CDOs. They’re good ways of managing risk through diversification and depending on the type creating new securities with desirable qualities. I wish the article would address the questions this brings to my mind. What is the total value of subprime auto loans outstanding and how does it compare to total value of the automobiles? More importantly, is there a massive CDS market associated with these loans and are significant numbers of synthetic CDOs being issued and how does the size of this derivatives market compare to that of the original loans? Is the risk being widely spread, or are only a handful of firms assuming most of the risk?

    The worst thing highlighted in this article is the predatory lending that is taking place. It pisses me off to no end that you have individuals in desperate straights with little financial sophistication getting taken advantage of by these lenders. Some of these people are little better than loan sharks.

  25. 25

    @spudvol:
    And you will never convince them that the two are the same thing. Everybody who isn’t scared of the black man already knows. The rest are listening to the fear and anger they feel looking at Obama, and the facts bounce off.

    Heck, all they have to do to let themselves hate Obama but like their new healthcare is never believe that the two are connected. Easy peasy.

  26. 26
    Talentless Hack says:

    One might get elected mayor of Louisville supporting the ACA – might – but statewide, it’s iffy at best. There are probably few KY Democrats with Gov. Beshear’s balls in that regard, and the governor has the advantage of already being the governor. All he has to do is demonstrate that the ACA works.

    So yeah, Grimes is probably smart to not mention the ACA if she can avoid it. Hate to say that, but this is Kentucky, not just Louisville, we’re talking about.

  27. 27
    Lolis says:

    @Cervantes:

    I don’t care who replaces McConnell. If Grimes wins, that likely means Dems retain a majority in the Senate. McConnell is not all that different from Ted Cruz when it comes down to it.

  28. 28
    angler says:

    Remember when there was struggle between Grimes and Ashley Judd for the nomination? Judd pulled out, but the wisdom was that Grimes would not be the liberal target that Judd would be. That was the bet made by KY Dems, and Grimes is sticking to the script. Lets see how it plays out.

  29. 29
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @spudvol: THAT needs to change. People need to be made to understand that Kynect is a direct result of ACA…and that the blah guy was instrumental with changing, for the better, the lives of hundreds of thousands of Kentuckians.

  30. 30
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Lolis:

    because it would be so sweet to get McConnell out and it will cause a major freak out amongst the Villagers.

    There is no doubt that this would indeed be sweet. Anything that freaks out the utter scum of the Village is good, as far as I’m concerned.

  31. 31
    Cervantes says:

    @Lolis: Sure. I was just wondering who you think McConnell’s replacement might be.

  32. 32
    Botsplainer says:

    @rikyrah:

    I live here, and know people close to each of them.

    Sad to say, each is having to deal with the deliberate pig ignorance of the rural/exurban Kentucky voter, since they are deluded by RWNJ propaganda and the chain emails of their crazy uncles.

  33. 33
    Yatsuno says:

    @Cervantes: Prediction on that front: it will be bloody. I can see Ted Cruz demanding that role & even getting a few other Senators to back him. But oddly enough I don’t think it will be him. It will be someone like Grandpa Walnuts. Unfortunately.

  34. 34
    Botsplainer says:

    @Talentless Hack:

    One might get elected mayor of Louisville supporting the ACA – might – but statewide, it’s iffy at best. There are probably few KY Democrats with Gov. Beshear’s balls in that regard, and the governor has the advantage of already being the governor. All he has to do is demonstrate that the ACA works.

    John Yarmuth is one of the most reliably re-electable House progressives. Here in the People’s Democratic Republic of Louisville, that 55% vote share he represents is now a deep, royal blue.

  35. 35
    Roger Moore says:

    @Talentless Hack:

    All he has to do is demonstrate that the ACA works.

    No. All he has to do is demonstrate that Kynect works. He doesn’t have to defend ACA in Washington, so he doesn’t have to make an connection to ACA unless he thinks it’s advantageous.

  36. 36
    Cervantes says:

    @Yatsuno: McCain? Do you think Cornyn (Minority Whip) has a chance against him?

    (Repeating for clarity: McConnell’s defeat is still a big if at this point.)

  37. 37
    some guy says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    sounds like a job for SuperPacMan, not the Grimes campaign itself.

  38. 38
    HR Progressive says:

    I share the consternation that Grimes should be beating McConnell over the head with that chart, and telling voters that Kynect AKA O-Freaking-Bama-Care actually works, and you’re welcome.

    But, as long as she continues running on other core Democratic issues of pay equality, the minimum wage, and I believe she isn’t afraid of her pro-choice record either…I don’t see a lot of value in bitching about her not running on Obamacare.

    When she’s elected, and when Hillary (or, hell, anyone not named Obama) runs in 2016…and Kynect continues doing good, maybe then will be a good time to go “By the way, everyone, Kynect is the ACA. Let’s keep it strong” and they’ll go “Oh. Ok”.

    Maybe. We’ll see.

    She’s got to retire McConnell, and if that campaign doesn’t include the ACA but does include a victory, I don’t really care.

  39. 39
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    @Lolis:

    Grimes and her campaign is consistently polling well with the strategy they are using. I am going to assumer they know more about their electorate than I do.

    Two words: Eric Cantor. Brat bounced him by successfully hanging the playing-political-footsie-in-DC-&-not-doing-a-damn-thing-to-help-you albatross on him. Grimes is smartly doing everything she can to wrap the same bird around Senator Yertle’s turtle neck.

  40. 40
    rikyrah says:

    Obamacare loses some of its campaign punch for Republicans
    By Michael A. Memoli, Lisa Mascaro

    Six months ago, a House Republican campaign official listed the top three issues that would propel the party’s candidates to victory in the midterm election: “Obamacare, Obamacare, Obamacare.”

    It was a strategy that worked well in 2010, when GOP electoral gains were fueled primarily by a high-profile campaign to repeal the newly passed Affordable Care Act.

    But now, months removed from the political storm that resulted from the botched rollout of the law and as more Americans begin receiving healthcare under the program, many Republicans have a more nuanced view of its importance.

    House Republicans are broadening their once-singular focus on the healthcare law and headed into an extended summer break without delivering on their promise to advance an alternative.

    For much of the summer, in fact, the issue has receded as both a topic of daily assaults in Congress and on the campaign trail. The once-common House votes to repeal Obamacare have been replaced by a probe into improper Internal Revenue Service targeting, hearings into treatment delays for veterans and a Republican push to sue or even impeach President Obama on allegations of overstepping his constitutional bounds.

    Republicans “are not finding as much traction” on Obamacare as they’d like among voters, according to Democratic strategist Stanley Greenberg. New polling from his firm found that voters in the states that will determine control of the Senate were evenly split between whether to implement and fix the health law or repeal and replace it.

    http://www.latimes.com/nation/.....story.html

  41. 41
    socraticsilence says:

    @rikyrah:
    Time to irresponsibly finance that Lamborghini then right?!

  42. 42
    James E. Powell says:

    @ruemara:

    I’m sorry. I missed where elected Democrats have ever really supported the ACA, Obama and any other of his achievements vocally & vociferously.

    I don’t even remember the president supporting the ACA vocally and vociferously. It’s never been something that he or any Democrat seem to be proud of.

  43. 43
    Alce_e_ardilla says:

    I think she will be happy to embrace it once it is no longer Obamacare,but “my healthcare,dammit” and that is just smart politics

  44. 44
    rikyrah says:

    See, this is why some Black folks make me mad.

    What is 1 million for a goddamn BILLIONAIRE?

    And the deposit will happen ‘ within the next 30 days?’

    WHAT THE PHUCK?

    Not an INVESTMENT into the Credit Union -just a deposit- that is nothing but pennies to him – and will be removed once the election is over.

    But, at least we know how much these folks are being paid to be a sellout.

    ………………………………………….

    Bruce Rauner promises $1M to South Side credit union

    Thursday, July 31, 2014
    CHICAGO (WLS) —
    Is it a multimillionaire stepping up to help a community, or is it a political candidate trying to buy votes? ABC7 Eyewitness News has learned Bruce Rauner has promised to give a South Side credit union $1 million.

    Nothing like this has ever happened in Illinois politics: A candidate for governor promised $1 million of his own money to help the audience at a campaign event.

    “I understand what he understands, and that’s money,” said Otis Monroe, Monroe Foundation.

    Monroe was among the African American activists who greeted Bruce Rauner this week at the National Black Wall Street office. After the doors closed to the news media, Monroe says he asked the wealthy Republican to deposit $1 million in the South Side Community Federal Credit Union for loans to small businesses.

    “He said he would commit not just a million dollars, but more than a million dollars to this institution,” said Monroe.

    “(You heard him say that?) Yes I did, and so did 60 other people,” said Mark Allen, National Black Wall Street.

    http://abc7chicago.com/politic.....n-/231631/

  45. 45
    gene108 says:

    But I don’t understand how a political party can expect to be successful by running away from their major achievement of the last 6 years, especially in a race where the other party is building a campaign on telling lies about that achievement.

    I guess you missed the 1990’s. As much as President Clinton was popular nationally, he was toxic in the South by 2000, in such former Democratic friendly states like Arkansas and Tennessee, which his successor Al Gore managed to lose, after winning them handily in 1992 and carrying them again, with smaller margins, in 1996.

    People love what Democratic policies have done for them – Social Security, Medicare and now the PPACA – but demonizing individuals is easy, whereas trying to explain why President Obama, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid are important reasons why you have health insurance is complicated and why KyNect would not exist without their efforts in a hostile political environment fostered by Mitch McConnell.

    Calling Harry Reid “dingy” and “corrupt” is easy and reinforces some predisposed reason to not trust him. Same with calling Pelosi a “San Francisco liberal”, which sets off all kinds of images of gay pride parades and other “sinful” images.

    In our sound bite, bumper sticker quote campaign environment explaining things is hard and not guaranteed to work.

    Saying simple stuff will be understood.

    Sometimes the simple stuff is so stupid and vile it kills your campaign, like “look at the maccaca” or “legitimate rape”, but at least people understand what you said.

    The only thing Grimes can say is “McConnell wanted to repeal KyNect” and link to statements about defeating any part of portion of the PPACA that is popular in Kentucky.

  46. 46
    WereBear says:

    @weaselone: The worst thing highlighted in this article is the predatory lending that is taking place. It pisses me off to no end that you have individuals in desperate straights with little financial sophistication getting taken advantage of by these lenders. Some of these people are little better than loan sharks.

    Even folks with “little financial sophistication” often know when they’re being ripped off. They are simply trapped in job = car type of equations. Most people don’t live in an area with adequate public transportation.

  47. 47
    James E. Powell says:

    Grimes can’t be campaigning on Obamacare because Obamacare is code for “that [insert racist epithet]” It doesn’t mean you support people getting affordable health insurance or health care. Saying you support Obamacare is the same as saying you support all the anti-American and anti-Jesus policies of “that [insert racist epithet].” No more, no less.

  48. 48
    Jay C says:

    @Cervantes:

    While it’s WAY too early to speculate on stuff like this, I’d say that in case McConnell gets the boot (pray FSM), someone like Jon Cornyn is probably much more likely to run for and get the Minority Leader spot than Grandpa McCrankypants. Unless I’m badly misreading things (always a possibility!), McCain doesn’t get much involved, AFAICT, in the legislative day-to-day, nuts-and-bolts of Senate business. Oh, he likes to put his name on Big Idea plans, and of course, bloviate away about bombing the world foreign affairs on the Sunday TV gasfests, but doesn’t play well with others on the organizational level.

    I think it was Lyndon Johnson who once divided Senators into their two main varieties: “work horses” and “show horses” (LBJ certainly knew: he was that rariity who was both!), it’s the former who usually end up as Party leaders.

  49. 49
    Yatsuno says:

    @Cervantes: I consider it possible that the Turtle still loses his position even if he does win. There’s a revolt brewing with the Cruz side of things. Plus I could see Cornyn having the knives out for him as well. My prediction stands: it will be bloody & a lot of egos are gonna get stomped on.

    Yertle is most in danger if the Senate does not go to the Republicans, which is still not a lock. And Grimes has been running neck and neck with him with a possible teatard revolt against him as well. Poor Turtle may be out of his Speaker job or even his day job come January 2015. But he’ll always have that sweet sweet wingnut welfare.

  50. 50
    KG says:

    @Yatsuno: if McConnell wins reelection the only way he doesn’t keep his leadership position is if Republicans don’t win a majority. Something that I think is still a,long shot because it means they’ll have to come very close to running the table

  51. 51
    Bill Arnold says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    Here’s why you run away from Obama, and Obamacare.

    That map never gets old. [Has anyone ever worked out a explanation that doesn’t at least partly involve racism?]

  52. 52
    a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q) says:

    @Stillwater: Hell, in Kentucky, a Democrat can’t win a state wide race by being a Democrat. As a friend of mine born and raised in Pineville KY notes, KY Democrats would be Republicans in other states.

    @spudvol:

    Few Kentuckians know there is a connection between Kynect and the ACA.

    And that’s an advantage to getting Kynect widely well received.

  53. 53
    Lolis says:

    @Yatsuno:

    I am not sure if Cruz would want Minority/Majority Leader. If he is truly planning a presidential run I think he will want to remain a blowhard with no actual responsibilities. I have no idea who it would end up being, but agree that it would be someone who has a fairly unobjectionable persona, maybe someone like Sen Corker.

  54. 54
    Lolis says:

    @Jay C:

    Cornyn is a really good guess. He knows how to pay lip service to the base but doesn’t come across as a true believer.

  55. 55
    Cervantes says:

    @James E. Powell:

    I don’t even remember the president supporting the ACA vocally and vociferously. It’s never been something that he or any Democrat seem to be proud of.

    Counter-example: Bill Clinton has explained and defended the ACA in speeches at least twice that I can remember.

  56. 56
    bemused says:

    @Botsplainer:

    Pure stubbornness too which I see in MN conservatives. They refuse to believe that Republicans will screw them over in a nanosecond because

    @Frankensteinbeck:

    they are totally indoctrinated with #1 and #2.

  57. 57
    Porlock Junior says:

    @Baud: “At least you didn’t say Democrat Governor. ”

    Or possibly he did (or tried to and missed), but the spell-checker sensibly substituted an actual word that’s of a similar shape.

    Does this prove that one shouldn’t let a machine do one’s spelling? Or the reverse?

  58. 58
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Porlock Junior:
    It’s okay to let a machine check your spelling — once you’ve picked the right word, which no machine can do for you. (Not so far, anyway.)

  59. 59
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @rikyrah: That’s why I kind of don’t care whether or not she wins. I’m sick and tired of Democrats running away from a very successful Democratic President. He’s responsible for the uninsured numbers going down considerably in Kentucky. Why can’t Grimes run on that loudly and proudly?

  60. 60
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @spudvol: Which is stupid, in my opinion. Why don’t they know?

  61. 61
    Cervantes says:

    @Jay C:

    I think it was Lyndon Johnson who once divided Senators into their two main varieties: “work horses” and “show horses” (LBJ certainly knew: he was that rariity who was both!)

    Carl Hayden, the first member of the US House from the then-new state of Arizona, was once advised by a colleague that if he wanted to get ahead in DC, he should strive to be a work horse rather than a show horse. That episode was related by LBJ upon Hayden’s retirement — from the US Senate, which suggests that Hayden took the advice seriously.

  62. 62

    Obama’s major achievement was restoring the banksters’ fortunes and keeping them out of prison.

    The ACA was the least he could do for his voters, so that’s what he did. Shoddily.
    ~

  63. 63
    Porlock Junior says:

    @Cervantes:
    ISTR one brief shining moment in 2012 when Obama publicly accepted that stupid name Obamacare on the grounds that it was a compliment. Very nice to hear at the time. Not clear he’s done much like that since. Sigh.

  64. 64
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @Patricia Kayden: She is from the state. She is within the margin of error against a sitting Senate Minority Leader. She might just have some idea of what she is doing. Do we want candidates to run campaigns that we like, hitting on the issues that we think are important, or do we want candidates to run campaigns that are designed to win in their area?

  65. 65
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®©: Oh, for fuck’s sake.

  66. 66
    KG says:

    @Patricia Kayden: you go into an election with the electorate you have, not the electorate you want

  67. 67
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Patricia Kayden:

    Why can’t Grimes run on that loudly and proudly?

    Because many white people are idiots who are willing to shoot themselves in the foot rather than let black or brown people benefit from the same thing white people are benefiting from. And I say that as a white person.

  68. 68
    kindness says:

    Well I just don’t get the South in general. Yea I understand to the extent that they resent anyone who isn’t from their neck of the woods telling ’em what to do but to be completely willing to cut off your own nose so quickly I just don’t get. Some things shouldn’t be knee jerk reflex stuff.

    I figure Grimes will embrace KyNet as it seems most Kentuckians (?) do. It’s the hating ObamaCare which they have to know is KyNet I do not understand.

  69. 69
    The Thin Black Duke says:

    @Mnemosyne: Yep. For example, Mitt Romney was one of the worse candidates to run for president that I can remember and he still got over 60% of the white vote. Racism isn’t a difference of opinion; it’s a goddamned mental disorder.

  70. 70
    ruemara says:

    @James E. Powell: Considering I’ve seen his speeches, I take great issue with that.

  71. 71
    evodevo says:

    @weaselone: There’s a good reason why “used car salesman” has been a perjorative in this country for 60 years…..

  72. 72
    WereBear says:

    @kindness: Well I just don’t get the South in general.

    It’s based on spite and resentment and exploitation. So maybe it’s good you don’t get it :)

  73. 73
    James E. Powell says:

    @Patricia Kayden:

    That’s why I kind of don’t care whether or not she wins.

    I care whether every Democrat wins because I have a lot of trouble with the thought of the Republicans controlling the senate.

  74. 74
    trollhattan says:

    Speaking of Republican stupidity (but, I repeat myself), Rep. Steve King, folks:

    Rep. Steve King (R-IA) refused to utter the word “impeachment” on Sunday, but warned that if President Obama used executive action to defer more deportations of undocumented immigrants, it might be the only option left for Congress.

    “None of us want to do the thing that’s left for us as an alternative,” King said on “Fox News Sunday” when host Chris Wallace asked if Obama delayed more deportations could lead to impeachment.

    “I think Congress has to sit down, have a serious look at the rest of this constitution, and that includes that ‘i’ word that we don’t want to say,” King continued, explaining that executive actions would trigger impeachment talk. “And I only say that now on this program because I want to encourage the president, ‘Please don’t put don’t put America into a constitutional crisis.'”

    When Wallace pressed King on whether impeachment was “on the table,” King echoed his concerns on immigration.

    “Where would we draw the line otherwise? If that’s not enough to bring that about, then I don’t know what would be,” he said. “We’ve never seen anything in this country like a president that says, “I’m going to make up all immigration law that I choose, and I’m going to drive this thing regardless of the resistance in Congress.'”
    http://talkingpointsmemo.com/l.....mmigration

    Please proceed, Steveo.

  75. 75
    aimai says:

    @James E. Powell: Oh for fuck’s sake.The president has always touted the ACA at the top of his lungs. This maybe be literally the stupidest thing any commenter has ever said on this board.

  76. 76

    @James E. Powell:

    I don’t even remember the president supporting the ACA vocally and vociferously. It’s never been something that he or any Democrat seem to be proud of.

    Where the fuck have you been?

    President Barack Obama called on his fellow Democrats to “forcefully defend and be proud” of the fact that millions of people have signed up for health care insurance through the federal marketplaces, and faulted Republicans who are still angling to repeal the Affordable Care Act.

    “I don’t think we should apologize for it. I don’t think we should be defensive about it. I think there is a strong, good, right story to tell,” Obama said Thursday during a rare appearance at the daily White House news conference.

    If there is ONE Democratic politician that has embraced the Affordable Care Act, it’s the fucking president.

    Yet while Democrats in tough races in 2010 shied away from touting the just-passed health law, known by its detractors as Obamacare, the president has embraced both the name and the law on the campaign trail this year.

    “We passed health reform — yes, I like the name ‘Obamacare’ — so your insurance companies can’t jerk you around anymore,” he told a cheering crowd in Manchester, N.H., last week. “So young people can stay on their parents’ plans till they’re 26. So women can’t be charged more than men for their insurance — being a woman is not a pre-existing condition.”

    I mean, did you just miss the entire 2012 election?

  77. 77
    Talentless Hack says:

    @Botsplainer: Yes, there is a reason someone from Louisville moves out to the outer edges of Jefferson County near and beyond the Snyder Freeway, and the fact that there are fewer “liberals” out there is probably it.

  78. 78
    Ruckus says:

    @rikyrah:
    Remember the stories about Kentucky when the ACA went fully live? People loved the idea and all the bits and pieces but hated that word, Obamacare. It may not be so politically stupid of Grimes to distance herself from the President or the ACA. It may be/probably is stupid in places like LA, SF, NYC, Chicago. But in the redder parts of the country, even one that has seen huge benefits from this law, it may be just too far for many to live with/vote for. It’s an extreme shame that it is that way in our country, but there we are.

  79. 79
    cmorenc says:

    @angler:

    Remember when there was struggle between Grimes and Ashley Judd for the nomination? Judd pulled out, but the wisdom was that Grimes would not be the liberal target that Judd would be. That was the bet made by KY Dems, and Grimes is sticking to the script. Lets see how it plays out.

    Well, there’s also the fact that Grimes’ campaign efforts to beat McConnell won’t be subject to the distraction of nude pictures from commercial films she’s done, whereas an Judd campaign would have. Unfortunately, the positions that would come first to too many Ky voter’s minds about Judd wouldn’t have been political.

  80. 80
    WereBear says:

    @Ruckus: It’s a self-image issue, I think. Some people can only see humanity in other people exactly like themselves.

    In my unkinder moments, I regard it as a severe lack of imagination.

  81. 81
    Cervantes says:

    @aimai: Not by a long shot!

  82. 82
    cmorenc says:

    @trollhattan:

    Speaking of Republican stupidity (but, I repeat myself), Rep. Steve King, folks:

    Am I the only one to sometimes wonder whether Rep. Steve King is actually a deep-undercover agent of the national Democratic party? Nearly everything he does or says undermines efforts of the GOP to appeal to voters beyond their narrow, hard-core base.

  83. 83
    Cervantes says:

    @Patricia Kayden:

    That’s why I kind of don’t care whether or not she wins. I’m sick and tired of Democrats running away from a very successful Democratic President.

    Voters’ indifference re ALG could further limit your very successful Democratic President if the Republicans take the Senate, making you even more sick and tired.

    He’s responsible for the uninsured numbers going down considerably in Kentucky. Why can’t Grimes run on that loudly and proudly?

    Whatever she’s doing, she’s not making a campaign commercial for Obama. Whatever she does between now and November, I hope her tactics work. We shall see.

  84. 84
    James E. Powell says:

    @Midnight Marauder: @aimai:

    Both of you should be ashamed of yourselves for how you talk to people who simply disagree with you. I’ve done nothing to harm you. But to the point under discussion.

    You can quote speeches or press releases, but hardly anybody hears or reads those. And what we know from poll after poll is that the public does not like the program, especially when it is called Obamacare, even though they like the provisions of the plan when they are asked about them separately.

    The program, whether called Obamacare or not, remained unpopular because the lies that the Republicans told about it penetrated deeper and wider than anything positive that anyone, including the president, said about it. And when Democrats got resistance, they changed the subject or temporized. And they still do. See, e.g., Grimes in Kentucky and Nunn in Georgia.

    We cannot comfort ourselves by saying that Americans buy the Republicans’ narrative because they are just too dumb or too disengaged. If they are so dumb, why aren’t the president and the Democrats selling them on their narrative?

    If you look at how Republicans do it, you can see what I mean by loud and proud. They not only sell the benefits, however dubious, of their own policies, they attack the opponents and make it politically dangerous to oppose them. They were somehow able to get most Americans to side with insurance companies and for-profit health care providers. Drug companies! How did they manage that? Not with the kind of political pablum that comes out of the White House.

  85. 85
    Cervantes says:

    @James E. Powell: Well, I think there’s a difference between “loud and proud” on the one hand and “shameless” on the other. There has to be.

    (This is not to gainsay your entire point; just one aspect if it.)

  86. 86
    The Thin Black Duke says:

    @James E. Powell: Translation: it’s Obama’s fault. Yeah, O.K.

  87. 87
    Cervantes says:

    @The Thin Black Duke: That’s your translation? Don’t give up your day job!

  88. 88
    Cervantes says:

    @Porlock Junior: Yes, I do remember the President saying he didn’t mind that Republicans were using the term “Obamacare” (as a pejorative). I think he was responding to a question about it.

  89. 89
    WereBear says:

    @Cervantes: In fact, he said something like:

    “I don’t mind them called it Obamacare. Because I do.”

    And what the Republicans are doing boils down to telling people there isn’t a problem, that people they hate are responsible if there is a problem, and they don’t have a change a thing in their thinking or doing.

    That’s an easy sell to people fearful of change.

    Democrats do not have a simple, easy, stupid, lie to tell. It would be easier if we did.

  90. 90
    The Thin Black Duke says:

    @Cervantes: I’m sorry, but I’m damned tired of the idea that if we just continue to beg and kiss the asses of these white “low-information” voters that they’ll eventually come to their senses and Do The Right Thing. No, they won’t. In spite of years of evidence that voting Republican isn’t in their best interest, they will continue to do so, no matter what. You ain’t gonna win an argument with somebody who has already made of their mind. And the GOP knows this, which is why they’ll continue to do their bullshit, because they won’t pay a price for it.

  91. 91
    Ruckus says:

    @WereBear:
    The number of people who I talk to and who are racists or anti immigrant (in this area that’s usually everyone lumped into Mexican, even though many here are birthright citizens or from other countries and the only connecting thing is language) just astounds me. I have traveled to several parts of the world and 46 of the 50 states and my take is that people really aren’t that different anywhere. Maybe it’s my exposure that allows me to see that.
    In my unkinder moments I just think of them as assholes. Their lacking imagination is way above that level.

  92. 92
    WereBear says:

    @Ruckus: In my unkinder moments I just think of them as assholes.

    Yep. There is that.

    Wish we had a cure :)

  93. 93

    @James E. Powell:

    Both of you should be ashamed of yourselves for how you talk to people who simply disagree with you. I’ve done nothing to harm you. But to the point under discussion.

    This isn’t about disagreement. You wrote “I don’t even remember the president supporting the ACA vocally and vociferously.” That you not even paying attention to an entire presidential election. And comments like “It’s never been something that he or any Democrat seem to be proud of,” are just flat out ignorant of reality.

    It’s not about harm. It’s about you obviously having no clue what you’re talking about.

    You can quote speeches or press releases, but hardly anybody hears or reads those.

    Sir, people paid attention to the speeches and press releases. It was an election. It was a major part of his re-election campaign.

    And what we know from poll after poll is that the public does not like the program, especially when it is called Obamacare, even though they like the provisions of the plan when they are asked about them separately.

    And what does this have to do with your original statement, “I don’t even remember the president supporting the ACA vocally and vociferously.” Seems like you’re talking about an entirely different point now, which is that people love everything about Obamacare except the Obama part. That has never been in serious dispute here.

    The program, whether called Obamacare or not, remained unpopular because the lies that the Republicans told about it penetrated deeper and wider than anything positive that anyone, including the president, said about it. And when Democrats got resistance, they changed the subject or temporized. And they still do. See, e.g., Grimes in Kentucky and Nunn in Georgia.

    No. It remains deeply unpopular because it’s associated with a black guy.

    We cannot comfort ourselves by saying that Americans buy the Republicans’ narrative because they are just too dumb or too disengaged. If they are so dumb, why aren’t the president and the Democrats selling them on their narrative?

    If you look at how Republicans do it, you can see what I mean by loud and proud. They not only sell the benefits, however dubious, of their own policies, they attack the opponents and make it politically dangerous to oppose them. They were somehow able to get most Americans to side with insurance companies and for-profit health care providers. Drug companies! How did they manage that? Not with the kind of political pablum that comes out of the White House.

    It’s amazing how you moved the conversation from “I don’t even remember the president supporting the ACA vocally and vociferously” to something entirely different.

    If you wanted to have a conversation about making the Affordable Care Act a more potent campaign issue for Democrats, you should have lead with that. Instead, you came out with a clearly inaccurate statement that President Obama doesn’t support the signature legislation of his administration “vocally and vociferously.”

    It was an extraordinarily dumb comment.

  94. 94
    Suzanne says:

    @rikyrah: The complicating factor is that many, if not most, people don’t choose whom to vote for based on facts or evidence or statistics, but on all manner of dumb shit. Grimes most certainly has the facts on her side, but has decided (and I don’t know if that’s rightly or wrongly) that evidence is not going to help her.

  95. 95
    Ruckus says:

    @The Thin Black Duke:
    This.
    They’ve had 50-60 yrs of seeing Dems help them and Repubs screw them, including 2 totally senseless wars and a financial melt down only outpaced by the last time our financial “betters” fucked everyone and they refuse to see anything other than someone might, just might, get the same things as them and they will cut off their own arm to avoid that. They aren’t changing because someone tries to sell them something better. They aren’t using reason and logic, it’s tribal, it’s basic, it’s fear. If they were using reason and logic they could see the bullshit of the conservative movement. They aren’t so they can’t.

  96. 96
    Bill Arnold says:

    @James E. Powell:

    The program, whether called Obamacare or not, remained unpopular because the lies that the Republicans told about it penetrated deeper and wider than anything positive that anyone, including the president, said about it.

    What do progressives do about the current Republican dominance in organized falsehood-spreading? (In particular, Fox News and other Murdoch-owned media outlets.) Not trying to pick an argument here, this is a real question.
    Even “lies” has been grabbed by the right. I was talking with an independent small businessman (funeral director/funeral home owner) Friday and in a conversation that veered coyly political, he mentioned that he hates politicians that “lie to your face” and it took me several minutes to realize that he was talking about President Barack Obama.

  97. 97
    Hal says:

    Grimes knows her audience. The people who are opposed to the ACA are not going to be persuaded by her in a few minutes at a debate. If running against the turtle is what works, than I say go for it. If she wins she can sit back and remind Kentuckians who now have health care where that benefit came from.

  98. 98
    James E. Powell says:

    @Midnight Marauder:

    Well, I guess you get some satisfaction from saying mean things to people who disagree with you. People you don’t even know. But you should be aware that it does nothing to make your argument any more persuasive.

    You made reference to speeches. My memory of the campaign is more about TV ads. Review all the ads. How many tout the ACA as a reason to re-elect the president? I don’t remember any and I looked on youtube and could not find any. Can you direct me to any?

    What’s clear that what whatever the president has said about Obamacare – however you or I would characterize it – he has completely failed to convince people to say that they support a program the features of which they will say they support. Can that be anything other than a communication problem?

    And given that Republican opposition to Obamacare cost the Democrats the house and the senate super-majority, and that it has hobbled his administration, whose communication problem is it?

  99. 99
    Ruckus says:

    @Bill Arnold:
    This.
    Let’s look at this from a different angle. Let’s say I’m an old white guy who has a job, comes home and watches the TV news and reads the paper. What are the chances I’m going to see anything real, other than the weather, traffic and maybe the once a week feel good story? And I’m not talking about faux news either. Remember I’m an old white dude and I remember Walter Cronkite and how they spoke truth to power. So all I hear is how everything is the President’s fault, what am I supposed to think? Chances are I’m already some degree of racist and I know that SS and Medicare is probably only going to help, not suffice my needs. So I’m already thinking that the only way to move ahead is by taking a bigger piece out of my ass because the news is telling me there is no other way, I’m going to fight that.
    In other words James has a point. Very badly made but he still has a point. Your question is the pertinent one, how do we change the story, or more importantly the delivery? I think Grimes may have something in Kentucky. The more we talk about fairness, taxation of the rich, regulations of business, the more they hear we want to screw them. It’s wrong and not what is being said at all but it is what is being heard. We need to change what is being heard and that will take a different tactic than shouting louder.

  100. 100
    rikyrah says:

    Just got back from GET ON UP!!
    PLEASE go see it.

    I loved it.

    I don’t think they glossed over James Brown’s demons in the least.

    But, this was about the music. And, how that music was part of the soundtrack of America.

    I was so moved by the end. They did a good job.

  101. 101
    chopper says:

    @James E. Powell:

    Both of you should be ashamed of yourselves for how you talk to people who simply disagree with you. I’ve done nothing to harm you.

    oh, boo fucking hoo.

  102. 102
    Amir Khalid says:

    I’m curious: Does anybody here know someone who named their new baby girl Malaysia?

  103. 103
    Bill Arnold says:

    @Ruckus:

    We need to change what is being heard and that will take a different tactic than shouting louder.

    Business people might see this and say “marketing problem” (subject to technical treatment). Do you have something else in mind?

  104. 104
    Matt McIrvin says:

    Oh god, I just heard some genius use the word “Ebolacare.”

  105. 105
    Yatsuno says:

    Hoo boy. Issa is not gonna be a happy camper over this one.

  106. 106
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @Amir Khalid: My daughter has a friend her age (about 7-8) named Malaysiah, with an h on the end.

  107. 107
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Matt McIrvin:
    Odd that in America last year, there were nearly twice as many newborn girls named Malaysia as there were named America.

  108. 108
    WereBear says:

    @rikyrah: I am most interested! Thanks for the good review.

  109. 109
    J R in WV says:

    @cmorenc:

    Not to mention that on thjis issue, the law is against Rep. King. People who enter the country illegally who are Mexican citizens may be immedaitely returned to their country of origin – Mexico.

    People who are citizens of any other country must be given due process under the law. They must have a statue hearing before an immigration judge. In a more ideal world they would be given access to a immigration lawyer who could make their legal case to remain in the US as legal refugees. But they do have a case if they are fleeing violence or government sanctioned discrimination.

    I am not a lawyer, so I don’t know the specific conditions that allow refugees to remain in the US, but I do know that there are conditions that require the immigration judge to grant some people legal residency. If President Obama was found to be sending people that are eligible for legal refugee status back to the conditions they are fleeing, THEN he would be violating immigration law, and could be impeached.

    So far, he has not violated immigration law in any deliberate or systematic way, so as much as Rep. King hates it, they can’t successfully (or perhaps the word legimately is better) impeach the president for the situation at the souterhn border.

    Republicans keep making up false things they wish they could impeach the president for, and they keep looking uneducated when they do so. You would think that people who want to join those who direct the levers of government would also want to learn the rules, spelled out in simple direct language, under which our government operates.

    It is caled the constitution, and I have read it more than once. I think King has not.

    They also keep gettting treason wrong.

    Opposing the government is not Treason, no matter how much Rep. King and his fellow gang members wish it was. The definition is two sentences in the Constitution, plain and simple language, not much to argue about:

    Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court.

    The constitution goes on to speak of punishments, but the definition is right there, two sentences. The way the Republicans blabber on about treason, you would think people would be committing treason right and left, but as you can see, unless we are at war it would be pretty hard to commit real treason.

    Politics and political disagreements are not treason. By the Constitutional definition they almost can’t be during normal times. The Civil War when states were in open rebellion was the last time wholesale treason was committed, by the people who created the CSA and went on to lead the war of rebellion.

    A few citizens of German birth were guilty of treason during World War I, but that’s the last time I can recall that treason was committed in America. There is certainly no legitimate way President Obama can be accused ot treason, and any one who does so is closer to treason than President Obama has ever been. I am pointing at Tea Party members and leaders right here, too.

  110. 110
    J R in WV says:

    @Midnight Marauder:

    Hear, Hear!! Good work, accurate and to the point.

  111. 111
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @J R in WV: Treason is, I think, the only crime that the Constitution goes out of its way to explicitly define, and you have to figure it was in reaction to people tossing around malicious charges of treason all over the place.

  112. 112
    Another Holocene Human (now with new computer) says:

    @Lolis: Grimes is supported by some ultra-progressive groups (organizers). She is running a very smart, discipline campaign and McConnell is falling apart.

    Let the D governor of KY defend Obamacare, known as Kynect in Kentucky. It is repairing the D brand in KY and the name “Obama” need never pass their lips. Very racist area, esp. SE KY.

  113. 113
    Ruckus says:

    @Bill Arnold:
    I was mostly talking about James E. Powell and his point that we need to be more like republicans in our “marketing”. But we are trying to govern and to provide things that people need, while the republicans are trying to take those things away. To hide that from or to convince enough people they just yell louder. And longer. At some point they become the only thing heard. Adopting their strategy isn’t the way to go. In general the left has tried to explain it’s position rather than beat you over the head with it. All I’m saying is that the explanation maybe needs to change. Don’t have any real ideas off the top of my head but just don’t think yelling louder is the answer. Grimes may have an answer for KY and that is to discuss the issues that her constituents want to hear, not the ones we think are important. Maybe she is a blue dog, maybe not. But even so could she possibly be worse than the turtle?

  114. 114
    vhh says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: I grew up in the Northeast and was Ivy educated. But my parents were originally from WVa, and I have worked as a scientist in Tennessee for some decades. So I have some understanding of Southern culture.

    A crucial insight comes from anthropologist Edward T Hall, who did ground breaking research on the classification of world cultures in terms of high context (ie, lots of conventions that everyone inside a culture understands without explanation) vs low context cultures (where everything is articulated in detail). Prime examples of high context cultures are Japan, France and Russia. Low context cultures include northwestern European countries like the Netherlands, Germany, and Scandinavia, and the Anglosphere—with the salient exceptions of Ireland and the American South.

    Here is a summary:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H.....t_cultures

    The attitudes of people in high context cultures towards outsiders often feature suspicion or even hostility. One senses them having a chip on their shoulder that they are just waiting for the outsider to knock off. To get past these obstaces, an outsider needs to invest in learning the details of language and social convention, at which point s/he often earns a warm welcome from the high context culture.

    This certainly jibes with my experiences living and working in Russia, France, and Japan . . . where my family and I won acceptance by going as native as we could.

    And it works the same way in the American South, which is illustrated nicely in the commentary and anecdotes from John Cole about his life in West By God Virginia.

    And that is what I think is going on in Kentucky and the rest of the Bible Belt. It is a tribal sort of passion play that makes little sense to fact and reality oriented people from the coasts or other places in the North.

    And, unfortunately, race is part of story here. The reason why Wisconsin, a state full of tolerant Scandinavians, Germans etc has veered right in state govt elections is that the area around Milwaukee has become one of the most racially segregated areas in the US.

    FDR was able to charm the Southerners into his corner, and did much to improve their lives. But to succeed he had to turn a blind eye to the ugly unsophisticated racism of the South. (Of course, there was a vile but more hidden racism in the North, too).

    For the moment, though, it looks to me like Southern whites are fully capable of voting their populations into poorer physical and financial health by rejecting Obamacare, because Freedumb. It may take 100 hospital closures in the rural South for the lesson to finally sink in.

  115. 115
    Paul in KY says:

    @rikyrah: She won’t win, unless she gets behind Obamacare.

  116. 116
    serena1313 says:

    mistermix,

    The NYT has not been paying attention because Allison Grimes is campaigning on issues that matter to Kentuckians.

    If you have the chance to watch the video of her on stage together with Mitch McConnell I recommend doing so. The contrast could not have been more striking.

    Allison: young, vibrant, strong, confidant and enthusiastic spoke first:

    She talked about minimum wages, pay equality for women, women’s rights, healthcare and coal workers, etc., things that matter to the Kentucky people.

    Mitch: old, beleaguered, tired, unenthusiastic except at the end of his speech when he talked about voting for him & a Republican Senate majority. Other than that he just repeated the same old stale talking points.

    Not once did he mention anything about issues that matter to Kentuckians. Nor did he mention his opponent more than a couple of times at most. If you didn’t know better you’d think McConnell was running against President Obama.

    In fact Grimes turned to McConnell and said at the end of her speech, “Senator, you seem to think the president is on the ballot this year. He’s not. This race is between me and you.”

    Yet it did not seem to phase McConnell because he immediately began railing against President Obama.

    While the NYT is not exactly what one would describe as a bastion of liberalism, it did stay within the realm of reality when portraying a candidate at least to a degree of accuracy.

    After watching the video, however, I was genuinely surprised that Alison Grimes is campaigning as a Democrat from what I’ve read and heard about her.

    Granted I realize that Kentucky and coal are two peas in a pod, but Alison is pushing hard on the issue with respect to jobs.

    Other than that, I agree with most of what she says. Furthermore Grimes is a huge improvement over McConnell.

    Let’s just hope Kentucky voters catapult her into office.

    Getting rid of McConnell would be sweet!

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