Open Thread: Proud to Be A Masshole

That’s my Congressional rep, Ed Markey’s replacement. I haven’t seen any Don’t Blame Me, I Voted for Hillary bumperstickers yet, but maybe I just don’t get out enough. From the Boston Globe:

In a break from tradition and from the rest of the Massachusetts congressional delegation, Representative Katherine Clark plans to boycott the upcoming inauguration of Republican President-elect Donald Trump as a form of ceremonial protest…

Senators Ed Markey and Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, two fierce critics of the incoming president, confirmed their attendance through statements.

Representative Seth Moulton of Salem, who considered not attending the inauguration, said in an interview he later decided to go because he thought it was “the best thing to do for our democracy.”…

Representative Michael Capuano of Somerville said he could have a scheduling conflict that would prevent him from being in Washington.

“If I don’t attend, it would not be to make a statement,” he said.

Representative Jim McGovern said he’s “attended every presidential inauguration” since he was elected to Congress in 1996 and will attend this year.

Representative Stephen F. Lynch of Boston said he always planned to attend. “I will be there,” Lynch said. “It’s out of respect for the office you should attend the inauguration. It’s a basic courtesy that you extend to the president of the United States.”…

McGovern said he plans to attend the women’s march scheduled in Washington for Jan. 21, the day after the inauguration. Moulton, who plans to attend the same protest, said he is chartering a train car so a group of Massachusetts residents can attend.

Because interest was so high from his constituents, Moulton is looking into procuring a second car. Each holds more than 80 people.

“I’m trying to empower people,” Moulton said.

Clark — whose office said Thursday that she had won a coveted spot on the Appropriations Committee — said she respected the opinion of others who disagree with her choice.

“People will come to different decisions,” Clark said. “But there is nothing about this presidency and his rejection about his core American values that I want to normalize.”

Seth Moulton‘s a progressive up-and-comer in the Democratic party, but he’s also an ex-Marine. Mike Capuano‘s got larger (state-wide) ambitions, while Jim McGovern is part of the Congressional Progressive Caucus. Steve Lynch is our token voice for the ‘economically anxious white working class’, aka the Howie Carr demographic — he’s got his current job for life, as long as he doesn’t do anything reckless like giving it up to run for something larger.

More happy news, Senator Professor Elizabeth Warren is running for re-election:

… In an interview with the Globe, Warren said her decision to run for a second term had been growing on her for some time. With the election over and questions back home mounting, “I just wanted to make it clear. I love this job,” she said. “I fight every day for working families across our Commonwealth. This fight is about to get a lot harder, and I want everyone to know I am in all the way.”

Warren suggested that Trump’s unexpected victory was among the factors that swayed her. “Trump has made the fight for working families a lot harder and more urgent,” she said, when asked if Trump’s White House win had influenced her decision. “I feel so strongly about the need to be in Washington and fight to protect the things that we have built, fighting Trump’s dangerous Cabinet appointments,” she said, pointing to Trump’s pick of Tom Price, a Republican congressman from Georgia, to lead the Department of Health and Human Services as one example.

Price, she said, wants to privatize Medicare, which would hurt the 1.2 million Massachusetts residents who receive health benefits under the government program. Warren is a member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee which will hold a confirmation hearing on Price later this month.

She also vowed to fight Republican efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act, weaken post-crisis financial laws, and defang Warren’s brainchild — the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau…

The usual unicorn-hunters perennial optimists point out this doesn’t preclude Warren running for President in 2020, but I (selfishly) believe she’ll have as much fun as she can stand getting under the President-Asterisk’s thin skin, and maybe smacking around Curt Schilling for a change of pace.



Late-Night Rambling Open Thread: Whither the Michigander Vote?

I haven’t been a Michigan resident since Debbie Stabenow was running for the state House, but I’ll always have a soft spot for the Mitten. Which is one reason I’ve been obsessively following Dana Houle’s twitter account

(Traverse City, which was a sleepy little local resort town when the Spousal Unit was growing up in the area, is now a high-dollar resort town where snowbird retirees show up to golf when the Florida summer weather becomes oppressive. Very GOP-leaning, in a normal year.)

Also, following the next thread led me to a really charming under-the-national-radar news report:


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Open Thread: President NFLTG Has An Endorsement

I don’t know if this will help Doug Applegate win, but at least it will greatly perturb Darrell Issa… San Diegans?



Open Thread: Massachusetts Potholeheads

Must… resist… Andrew Sullivan… joke…

I’m finally seeing anti-Prop 4 commercials during the local tv news — a full week after early voting started in this state. Those ads are both sanctimonious and dishonest, and if I hadn’t already voted in favor, their will nobody think of the children!!! puling would’ve strongly influenced me to do so. (The pro-legalization people have been running extremely discreet ads for the last month or so, and they didn’t feel the need to lie.) I haven’t even been around marijuana since the mid-1980s, but the current “medical use is okay, as long as you’re a white person with enough money, but no way will we allow our nice neighborhoods to be defiled by pot shops or the human detritus they attract” patchwork goes beyond farce into tragedy.

Our (Repub) governor, Boston’s (Dem) mayor, and Cardinal O’Malley (still a force, here in the Commonwealth) have all come out against the proposal, arguing that it will enable filthy cartels to further target ‘the most vulnerable neighborhoods,’ while simultaneously claiming that nobody gets arrested for possession these days anyways. (Technically, adults can only be fined if they’re busted carrying less than an ounce, but ‘possession with intent to distribute’ is still a valuable loophole for law enforcement officers looking to keep Those People in their place.)

Of course, the real make-or-break state for full national legalization is California… although I find it somehow endearing that Maine apparently hopes to replace its decaying pulpwood industry with an even more renewable plant product…



Sunday Afternoon Open Thread: WASP Humor

Yep, another Bush cousin. Thanksgiving at Kennebunkport is going to be a barrel of laughs, this year.

Speaking of barrels and their bottoms, Curt ‘Wave the Bloody Sock’ Schilling held the weekend’s saddest Trump rally…

… but at least he’s found his true media home, according to NYMag:

On Monday, Breitbart plans to announce former Red Sox pitcher and Trump supporter Curt Schilling will begin hosting a daily online radio show featuring political commentary and calls from listeners. The broadcast will eventually include a video livestream. The show marks Schilling’s return to media six months after ESPN fired him for sharing an anti-transgender Facebook post with a message that read: “A man is a man no matter what they call themselves. I don’t care what they are, who they sleep with, men’s room was designed for the penis, women’s not so much. Now you need laws telling us differently? Pathetic.”…

Schilling’s jump to Breitbart will give him a national platform as he prepares to challenge Elizabeth Warren for her Senate seat in 2018…

Senator Warren’s reaction?



Mouthy Idiots Open Thread: More Wingnut Schadenfreude, Masshole Edition

Because Curt Shilling is not a smart person, this happened tonight:

From the Crooks & Liars link:

Schilling continued, “”I would like to ask you something as a person who is practicing the Jewish faith and have since you were young. I don’t understand, maybe this is the amateur, non-politician in me, I don’t understand how people of Jewish faith can back the Democratic party which over the last 50 years have been so clearly anti Israel. so clearly anti-Jewish, Israel.”

He went on, “That I don’t know what else would be done, said, or happen for people to understand that they don’t — the Democratic party is alive with Israel, only because we have agreements in place to make them have to be.”

Tapper very coolly said, “Well, I don’t speak for Jews. I would imagine, just to try to answer your question. One of the reason Jews are Democrats has more to do for social welfare programs and that sort of thing.”

Jake repeated, “Again, I don’t speak for Jews.”

“I know you don’t. I just always find it a great conversation for somebody of your faith to — because I want to understand the reason behind some of those things so i appreciate that.”…

And theeeeennnn, on MSNBC’s Hardball…. per Media Matters‘ partial transcription:

CURT SCHILLING: Well, I mean Chris, I’m apparently an anti-semite now, because I had the gall and the audacity to ask someone of the Jewish faith why or how they believe people of the Jewish faith vote Democrat! I mean, god forbid I listen to someone of the faith, rather than the media, who clearly are not biased and don’t have an agenda. I mean, that to me is just common sense.

I don’t want — I don’t need Chris Matthews to tell me why people of Jewish faith vote the way they do, I want to ask someone of the faith. To me, that’s much more relevant. I think that — and I don’t have a problem asking people questions like that, because I’m not trying to be offensive or racist. I’m clearly curious, because I’ve read my history. I understand my history, that, you know, that this country feels so anti-Israel in the last 15 years, more so than at any point in my life and I can’t figure that out.

MATTHEWS: Well, that’s a legitimate debate we’re all going to have. By the way, left, right on Israel, left, right on Bibi Netanyahu is a popular argument anywhere in the country, by the way. Especially in Israel they argue about that stuff, which is a great thing over there.

But the problem is, people will say is, and I’ll say it, you can’t ask a person of a religious faith or a race to speak for that religious group and to ask them to sort of account for it. You ask them to account for it as an individual.

SCHILLING: No, you can. Chris —

MATTHEWS: Go ahead.

SCHILLING: Not true. Liberals do it with Christians all the time. Liberals do it with Christians all the time, and I’m not going to play the victim game because I’m a white male Christian, which apparently makes me a racist to anybody, that as long as — if I don’t speak out in favor of whatever it is they want me to speak out of…

Gosh, and we didn’t even get the opportunity to watch Senator Professor Elizabeth Warren kick his broad fishbelly-white arse from Williamston to Provincetown.

Also, I’m against any action that makes Chickenshit Charlie Baker happy, which this will. Not that Charlie doesn’t need whatever good news he can garner, right now:



Thursday Morning Open Thread: Get Out the Vote

Apart from waiting on the latest Trump embarrassment, what’s on the agenda for the day?

Goal Thermometer