Shush, Thrush, She’s With Us

If you are even a teensy bit skeptical about the extent of Clinton Derangement Syndrome or the mainstream media’s refusal to hold Hillary Clinton to a normal standard such as “when she speaks, commonly accepted word definitions aren’t suspended and replaced with more sinister meanings,” well, take a look at Twitter right now.

The occasion? Clinton spoke to Christiane Amanpour at a Women for Women event today. Excerpts of CNN coverage:

Hillary Clinton delivered her most forceful critique of President Donald Trump’s 2016 victory on Tuesday, taking personal responsibility for her failed campaign but also pointed to the timing of a letter from FBI Director James Comey and Russian interference as factors.

“If the election had been on October 27, I would be your president,” she told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour at a Women for Women event in New York.

“I take absolute personal responsibility. I was the candidate, I was the person who was on the ballot. I am very aware of the challenges, the problems, the shortfalls that we had,” Clinton said, before adding that she was “on the way to winning until a combination of Jim Comey’s letter on October 28 and Russian WikiLeaks raised doubts in the minds of people who were inclined to vote for me and got scared off.”

“The reason I believe we lost were the intervening events in the last 10 days.”

The event marks the latest where Clinton, in a stinging rebuke to Trump, both blames herself for the 2016 loss but also casts the current President as someone aided by outside factors, including the Russian government.

After Clinton noted the 3 million more votes she won than Trump, Amanpour joked that the President would soon tweet about the comment.

“Fine. Better than the interfering in foreign affairs,” Clinton said. “If he wants to tweet about me than I am happy to be the diversion because we have lot of things to worry about. He should worry less about the election and my winning the popular vote than doing some other things that would be important for the country.”

Clinton, aides and friends say, has grown more at peace with her loss in recent months, but is still focused on the interference by the Russian government, especially the fact that WikiLeaks began releasing John Podesta’s hacked emails hours after the damaging “Access Hollywood” Trump tape was released.

Clinton, as she has done in the past, also hung part of her 2016 loss on misogyny.

“Yes, I do think it played a role. I think other things did as well,” Clinton said.

But repeatedly, Clinton came back to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s role in the 2016 election and how he was able to tilt the scale in favor of Trump and against her.

Clinton, aides say, sees her role during the Trump years as a political activist who speaks out when issue she cares about are threatened. And on Tuesday, it was clear Clinton was ready to settle into that role.

“I am now back to being an activist citizen and part of the resistance,” Clinton said…

That’s what she said. Here’s what Glenn Thrush of the NYT heard:

Fucking fuck. And when Thrush got pushback, such as direct quotes in which Clinton acknowledged screw-ups and took responsibility for the loss, the MSM Heathers scurried to Thrush’s defense because that’s not what Clinton reeeeeally meant.

See, this is how it works, guys: Everything is always Clinton’s fault — and her fault alone. It can’t be a combination of factors, including Clinton’s missteps.

And God knows, the media coverage had nothing to do with the election outcome. Nope, it’s all on Clinton.

Good gravy, what a bunch of arrogant fuck-sticks. I regret that I had but one NYT subscription to cancel for its abysmally shitty election coverage and persistent refusal to engage in introspection. The end.



Empowerful

Via TPM, Axios, the landing pad for Politico rejects, transcribed Ivanka Trump’s latest women’s empowerment scheme:

I’m sure this is fine. It’s not like a fund that leverages political connections at the highest levels to buttonhole the rich and powerful worldwide would be seen as problematic during a political campaign — much less when operated from the White House by the president’s daughter, business partner and official adviser.

Crispy Cajun-fried Jeebus, I sure hope Hillary Clinton has a well-developed capacity for ironic amusement.



Alright You Unsympathetic Jackals…

Y’all want me to quit kvetching about something on the internet? That’s practically active sympathy for Putin in my book, but Bqhatevwr.

Y’all want something a little more inspiring? Well, intercourse yourselves sideways with an oxidized agricultural implement, but here you go anyway, because I love you folks.

This is Tikka 2016, getting ready for his next campaign speech.

tikka-microphone

And here he is unwinding after a demanding five minutes or so on the campaign trail:

tikka-at-ease

So drink these in until you’re catatonic.

Humph.



Stamina! (And Tactical Thinking)

I’ve reached the point where my sleep patterns and the kindness I’m able to show my family both demand that I step away from the election noise machine — staying off Twitter as near totally as possible, for example — but I haven’t yet given up one habit: checking the official campaign schedule pages for both Trump and Clinton.

At this stage of the race, the only absolutely equal resource the two sides have is time, and without having any deep insight into how professionals think about deploying their stock of hours and minutes, I still find it interesting to see what each side is doing.  Right now, there’s quite a contrast.

The Republican ticket lists only its two principals’ travels.  On a quick glance Donald Trump and Mike Pence have eighteen events on their docket between now and Monday evening.  That’s deceptive, however, as the schedule includes two events at which both appear.   So that’s sixteen headlined campaign rallies over the next four days.*

william_hogarth_032

The Clinton/Kaine campaign is doing it differently.  Hillary’s campaign lists not just the ticket’s events, but those of her top surrogates.  Including those gives Clinton/Kaine sixteen events just today.  Two by the candidate (compared to four Trump rallies today, btw), one Kaine-led farrago — to which add appearances by Obama, Biden, Bernie Sanders, Bill C., Chelsea C., and a Cleveland, OH concert headlined by Jay Z. (Props to Bernie, doing four events today, three in IA and one in Nebraska, and then  two more tomorrow, in IA and CO.  Not leaving it on the table is our Senator from VT.)  Twelve tomorrow, without POTUS and Bill, but adding Katy Perry, Stevie Wonder and Jon Bon Jovi appearing in two concerts in PA (Perry and Wonder) and FL (Bon Jovi).  Sunday and Monday see fewer events, but with similar star power — Obama back on the trail, with Michelle joining him and Clinton, Bill and Chelsea for an election-eve rally in Philadelphia.

In all, and not counting some Cher-led fundraisers, the Democratic campaign has thirty eight events between now and election day.

In terms of geography, the two campaigns basically agree on what’s left to fight about.  Both show up in all the usual suspects: FL, NC, OH, PA, MI, IA, CO, and NH.  Trump, somewhat oddly, heads to NV for the rally that is half his Saturday schedule. (Odd, because early voting ends today in NV, so he’s missing a chance to give a boost to that  process, which will finish with half, perhaps as much of 70% of all ballots cast.)

Clinton, Kaine and their surrogates will skip Nevada but add stops in  Nebraska’s one gettable electoral vote (with a Sanders visit), in Colorado on (four rallies on two different days — three led by Bill Clinton, one by Sanders), and one Joe Biden visit to Wisconsin.

So there you have it:  broad agreement on where this election will be settled (if it isn’t already), and very different deployment of publicly visible resources to fight those battles.  None of this speaks to the ground game or any of the secret sauce which we believe (and I deeply hope) favors the more organized and technically skilled Democratic operation.

Make of it what you will.  For me, this kind of thing helps me detox from election madness. YMMV.  The effect won’t last that long, but I’ll get myself some help by heading to NH to GOTV on Sunday, and probably again on election day.

Open thread!

*An bit of strangeness:  while Trump is indeed making good on his promise to fill a heavy campaign schedule, Pence only has three solo appearances slated.  I’m not sure what that means, if anything — could be Trump doesn’t see the point of spending money on his number two; could be that Pence is dialing it back; could be what the goat’s entrails told someone.

Image:  William Hogarth, Canvassing for Votes, from the Humours of an Election series, 1754-55.



Kitten Tikka Masala Weighs In

Tikka has decided to make his views on this election absolutely clear:

tikka-campaign-button

 

I don’t know about y’all, but I can’t take another debate.  My spouse and son will be glued to the set while I’ll be at a bar with a friend in the science museum business.  We’ll talk shop, mostly ignore the baseball game, and, for my part, try to weigh the pros and cons between bourbon and rye. (Cue the inevitable soundtrack.)

Tikka’s done my thinking for me, and I don’t need any more exposure the Cheeto-Faced Ferret-Heddit ShitGibbon, thank you very much.

Your plans?

PS:  An alternate view: Tikka knows (as many Democratic candidates seem not to) how to engage the camera:

tikka-campaign-button-2



Which Of These Is Not Like The Others?

Andrew Sullivan — yes, I know, and I’ll get back to that in a moment — is live blogging the RNC for New York Magazine.  His reaction on Day 2  to the Christie-led witch trial “lock her up” frenzy was as it should have been:  it was vile and the mark of a neo-fascist campaign.  That evoked a response from a reader Sullivan then posted to the blog, which argued, reasonably enough, that errors in office are not criminal offences.  For example, that reader wrote and Sullivan published:

Politicians and presidents make serious ethical mistakes. Reagan/Bush 41 on Iran-Contra, Bush 43 on WMD intelligence/torture, Bill Clinton on perjury.

Let’s review.

Iran -Contra:  trading with a reviled adversary to fund an illegal covert war that killed thousands of the most vulnerable, least powerful people in our hemisphere.

Fra_Angelico_003

WMD intelligence/torture: launch a war on false pretexts that left thousands of Americans, and hundreds of thousands of Iraqis dead, many more wounded, millions displaced, an ongoing conflict that has spawned attacks on innocents all over the world, and that has led the United States government at its highest level to countenance war crimes.

Coloured_Figures_of_English_Fungi_or_Mushrooms.djvu

Perjury:  lying about a blow job.

Elephant_and_Whale_Screens_by_Ito_Jakuchu_(Miho_Museum)L

That one could write that sentence without a hint of irony is a measure of the damage done to US politics by the Republican party made as far back as 1968 to put power at all costs before all else.  That Andrew Sullivan could disseminate it without comment reminds us of his own Clinton Derangement Syndrome, and his unreliability as any kind of moral arbiter.

Sullivan is a clever man, a fast and fluid writer, and does get some things right; certainly, for all his CDS, he’s got no illusions about Trump as anything more than a Mussolini wannabe.

But for all that, he’s a terrible thinker.  Through the live blog (I’ve gotten through day 1 and most of day 2 so far) he talks repeatedly about the GOP’s focus on feeling at the expense of facts and reason — and he’s right of course.  But when the issue strikes one or another of his standing emotional chords, he’s no better.  I hope tomorrow to have the time to write up his stuff on Black Lives Matter.  It is everything you’d expect, and the current debacle turns on his unwillingness to do the intellectual work needed to test his own assumptions.

OK — it’s over to you, and back to the problem of figuring out 17th century share prices from one end of a coffee shop to another for me.

Images:  Fra Angelico, The Massacre of the Innocents 1450.

James Sowerby, Coloured Figures of English Fungi or Mushroomsplate 43, 1798.

Ito Jakuchu, Elephant and Whale Screens, 1797.



Further Airing of the Grievances

So, Bernie Sanders gave a speech last night. We’ve been talking about it. I’m sure some of y’all are sick of the entire discussion, which is fine — lots of other interesting threads below, or, if your scroll is sticky, there’s sure to be another up top soon.

But I’m one of those annoying assholes who believe the only way to work through a conflict is to get everything on the table. (The four scariest words in my family are “we need to talk…”)

It’s not that I enjoy picking at scabs (well, maybe a little). It’s that only in this way can we come together and move forward. Or decide that each other are irredeemable morons upon whom we should not bother to waste another pixel and look for other allies instead. Either outcome is progress! Read more