Friday the 13th “Rhymes with Bucket” Open Thread

A little gift to all the GOP senators now “home for the weekend” with their constituents, already faced with the delicate task of explaining why a megalomaniac reality tv star / real estate developer is the new voice of their party, not that there’s anything wrong with that. Nice one, President Obama!
Apart from no longer giving a rat’s arse, what’s on the agenda for the weekend?

Thursday Morning Open Thread: Some Folks Don’t Learn

scotus refusal burns gop eagan

Timothy Eagan via

Yet Dana Milbank is fretting…

… In his introduction of Garland, Obama quoted past praise for the nominee by Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), the longest-serving Republican on the Judiciary Committee. Hatch supported Garland’s nomination to the circuit court two decades ago. He has since said that Garland would be a “consensus nominee” to the high court and that there’s “no question” he would be confirmed. Just last week, Hatch predicted Obama wouldn’t nominate Garland, because he’s too moderate.

But minutes after Obama nominated Garland, Hatch told reporters that he would continue opposing consideration of any nominee until after the election. And McConnell said Obama “made this nomination not with the intent of seeing the nominee confirmed but in order to politicize for purposes of the election.”

Obama had done just the opposite: He picked an old white guy whose centrist views do not excite the Democratic base — an olive branch to conservatives in (vain) hopes that they would relax their lock-step objections. In the process, he antagonized allies on the left, raising the possibility that Democrats won’t get a political benefit from the standoff — and that Obama still won’t get his nominee confirmed…

I have not always been serene in my faith regarding the Eleventh-Dimensional Chess Master, but let’s give President “Rhymes with Bucket” Obama some credit here, okay? There are already ads on my tv (Boston being what passes for a NH media market) attacking Kelly “Handmaiden of Gilead, also of McCain/Graham” Ayotte for ‘refusing to perform her Constitutional duty’ when it comes to scheduling a hearing for Judge Garland. I’m sure Grassley and the other GOP senators running this year are watching similar ads and popping antacids. Either they stand on their principles, such as they are, and give both-sides! voters another reason to sit on their hands come Election Day… or they break down, let President Kenyan Muslim have his lousy “hearings”, and risk getting primaried by an even further-right purist next time. Not to mention the rich pickings any such hearing is liable to provide for future attack ads, per the last eleven hours of Benghazi-gate.
Apart from rolling our eyes, what’s on the agenda for the day?

Saturday Morning Open Thread

I think I’m old and staid enough to get away with saying that the Obama sisters are growing up into lovely young ladies, and their parents can be very proud.

But not so staid that I can’t enjoy the President’s Rhymes-with-Bucket Tour in progress, per Politico:

Speaking at a Democratic Party fundraiser in Austin, Texas, on Friday evening, President Barack Obama lit into Donald Trump, by turns mocking him for “selling steaks” and ripping his rhetoric— while urging the GOP to take responsibility for creating him.

“So here’s the truth,” Obama began as he defended his economic record against Trump’s criticism. “Look it up. America is pretty darn great right now.”…

Then the president launched into a lengthy series of taunts of his own, blistering the Republican establishment for being “shocked that somebody is fanning anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-Muslim sentiment.”

“How can you be shocked?” he asked. “This is the guy, remember, who was sure that I was born in Kenya. Who just wouldn’t let it go. And all this same Republican establishment, they weren’t saying nothing. As long as it was directed at me, they were fine with it. They thought it was a hoot. Wanted to get his endorsement. And then now, suddenly, we’re shocked that there’s gambling going on in this establishment.”

“What is happening in this primary is just a distillation of what’s been happening inside their party for more than a decade,” Obama said, accusing Republicans of denying “evidence of science” and viewing Democrats as “destroying the country, or treasonous.”…

Apart from enjoying the vision of Media Village Idiots groping for their individual custom-crafted hand-finished fainting couches, what’s on the agenda for the day?

Saturday Night Open Thread: Thank You, Mr. President

… and also Balloon Juice’s own 2016 presidential candidate, Baud, for the link.

Open Thread: You’d ‘Check Out’, Too

Let the shrieking commence, but I kinda agree with Paul Waldman, in the Washington Post, on those who critique President Obama’s “stagecraft”:

… The criticism in a case like this tends to be of the third-person variety: whoever’s doing the criticizing says, “I understand why substantively this doesn’t make any difference, but other people are going to look at it and be upset.” But I’m not sure who’s sincerely upset about it.

It isn’t that these accumulated critiques are inaccurate. In many ways it appears that he has indeed stopped bothering with a lot of the things that contemporary presidents spend their time worrying about. Barack Obama isn’t Bill Clinton — working a room, whether it’s full of donors or full of senators, isn’t his idea of a good time. So he’ll go to the fundraisers, because that’s still something with practical importance for his party. But he isn’t going to massage Congressional egos, because at this point it won’t make a bit of difference. He’s enjoyed almost perfect support on legislation from congressional Democrats (and almost perfect opposition from Republicans), and there isn’t going to be any major legislation in his last two years anyway, not with the GOP controlling one and possibly two houses of Congress…

Back when he first ran for president, Obama and his team prided themselves on their ability to see beyond the fury of that day’s news cycle, avoid the distraction of whatever was in Politico that morning, and keep their focus on their long-term goals. That was a central part of the “No Drama Obama” ethos. What’s happening now is in some ways an extension of that perspective. It may be that Obama has decided that it’s no longer possible to affect how most Americans think about him — after nearly six years in office, there’s no clever press strategy that will revive his approval ratings. The only thing that will make a difference is results...


Apart from armchair quarterbacking (and throwing peanuts at those who do), what’s on the agenda for the evening?