MIDDLE FINGER EXTENDED

Posted by Christopher Johnson | Sunday, November 13th, 2016 | Tears/Fears for Hillary | 17 Comments

I don’t intend to spend a whole lot of time making fun of the reactions to the 2016 Great Progressive Cataclysm of Tuesday last.  My colleague’s doing a bang-up job keeping ahead of the continuing leftist tantrum.  And most of the reactions have been basically the same anway.  “BecauseRACISM!!  HITLER!!”  And to paraphrase Wilde, one would have to have a heart of stone to read overwrought hysteria like this (UPDATE: Or this) without laughing.

I stayed with the TV coverage a whole lot longer than I thought I would.  All the way to the end, in fact.  It was damned compelling television and the talking heads were the reason.  This was never directly uttered but I got the feeling that the media types started out the evening thinking with slight but discernible annoyance, “Okay, when can we call her the winner and start lecturing the Republicans?”

Then the polls closed here in the Midwest and suddenly there was the huge red gash across the center of the map of the country.  And that’s about when a terrifying thought began to fester in the media types.  “Oh my dear God.  Do you seriously think that…that…clown…might actually…win this thing?”

And that thought built and it built and it built some more.  Trump opened a gap that Clinton couldn’t seem to make any serious headway closing.  Then it got down to Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania, all of which were repeatedly declared too close to call.

Suddenly, out of the blue, the bomb dropped.

Hillary conceded.

And the media ran on fumes the rest of the way.  It was all some of the most glorious television that I had ever seen.  Ace refers to this feeling as a schadenboner and CBS’s Will Rahn explains the reason for it:

The mood in the Washington press corps is bleak, and deservedly so.

Since we were completely in the tank for her and all.

It shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone that, with a few exceptions, we were all tacitly or explicitly #WithHer, which has led to a certain anguish in the face of Donald Trump’s victory. More than that and more importantly, we also missed the story, after having spent months mocking the people who had a better sense of what was going on.

Come to find out that the yokels really do hate our guts and really do think that we’re partisan hacks.

So much for that. The audience for our glib analysis and contempt for much of the electorate, it turned out, was rather limited. This was particularly true when it came to voters, the ones who turned out by the millions to deliver not only a rebuke to the political system but also the people who cover it. Trump knew what he was doing when he invited his crowds to jeer and hiss the reporters covering him. They hate us, and have for some time.

Which is understandable, I guess, since we hate them and have for some time.

And can you blame them? Journalists love mocking Trump supporters. We insult their appearances. We dismiss them as racists and sexists. We emote on Twitter about how this or that comment or policy makes us feel one way or the other, and yet we reject their feelings as invalid.

It’s a profound failure of empathy in the service of endless posturing. There’s been some sympathy from the press, sure: the dispatches from “heroin country” that read like reports from colonial administrators checking in on the natives. But much of that starts from the assumption that Trump voters are backward, and that it’s our duty to catalogue and ultimately reverse that backwardness. What can we do to get these people to stop worshiping their false god and accept our gospel?

We diagnose them as racists in the way Dark Age clerics confused medical problems with demonic possession. Journalists, at our worst, see ourselves as a priestly caste. We believe we not only have access to the indisputable facts, but also a greater truth, a system of beliefs divined from an advanced understanding of justice.

But thank Walter Cronkite, peace and blessings be upon him, that we still have our bumper stickers to fall back on.

You’d think that Trump’s victory – the one we all discounted too far in advance – would lead to a certain newfound humility in the political press. But of course that’s not how it works. To us, speaking broadly, our diagnosis was still basically correct. The demons were just stronger than we realized.

This is all a “whitelash,” you see. Trump voters are racist and sexist, so there must be more racists and sexists than we realized. Tuesday night’s outcome was not a logic-driven rejection of a deeply flawed candidate named Clinton; no, it was a primal scream against fairness, equality, and progress. Let the new tantrums commence!

Which they have.  So obviously we need to keep lecturing the idiots until they realize how wrong they are.

That’s the fantasy, the idea that if we mock them enough, call them racist enough, they’ll eventually shut up and get in line. It’s similar to how media Twitter works, a system where people who dissent from the proper framing of a story are attacked by mobs of smugly incredulous pundits. Journalists exist primarily in a world where people can get shouted down and disappear, which informs our attitudes toward all disagreement.

Journalists increasingly don’t even believe in the possibility of reasoned disagreement, and as such ascribe cynical motives to those who think about things a different way. We see this in the ongoing veneration of “facts,” the ones peddled by explainer websites and data journalists who believe themselves to be curiously post-ideological.

That the explainers and data journalists so frequently get things hilariously wrong never invites the soul-searching you’d think it would. Instead, it all just somehow leads us to more smugness, more meanness, more certainty from the reporters and pundits. Faced with defeat, we retreat further into our bubble, assumptions left unchecked. No, it’s the voters who are wrong.

And there it is.  We veterans of the Anglican/Episcopal wars know this mindset intimately.  We’re right and you’re wrong so we need more “conversation” and more “dialogue” until you realize this.

There’s kind of a law of diminishing returns at work here.  You can declare that I’m a “racist” for disagreeing with you only so many times before I stop listening to you or caring what you say.  Aren’t I concerned about Donald Trump’s “misogyny?”  Same as I was when Bill Clinton strapped on the ol’ presidential milking machine in the Oval Office, which, as I recall, didn’t seem to bother the rest of you very much.

After all, it was “just sex.”

It gets down to this.  If you’ve got actual arguments why I should vote a certain way, I’ll be happy to listen to them.  But if your “argument” is “Vote for Hillary Clinton or you’re a racist, misogynist, ‘homophobic’ bigot,” then you don’t have anything I need to listen to so I’ll be voting for Donald Trump.

The fact that my vote pisses you off is merely the cherry on top of that banana split.


LAUGH RIOT

Posted by Christopher Johnson | Saturday, November 12th, 2016 | Tears/Fears for Hillary | 19 Comments

Faced with great tragedy, one should always try to keep one’s sense of humor as much as one possibly can:

Aides also blamed the media for the loss.

“The media always covered [Hillary Clinton] as the person who would be president and therefore tried to eviscerate her before the election, but covered Trump who was someone who was entertaining and sort of gave him a pass,” Podesta said. “We need to reflect and analyze that and put our voices forward.”

The campaign chairman blamed the press for “the dominance of the way they covered the email” controversy, saying it overlooked “the conflicts of Trump’s businesses, the Russian contacts we are now learning to be true, the failure of the press following the 3-page leak to the New York Times to really dig into the income tax question.”

“We need to be mindful of the fact that they’re going to continue, they won’t quit, they’re going to continue to throw mud,” he said of the press, adding that Clinton supporters need to “defend her and her legacy and the kind of person she is.”


THE PROTESTS/RIOTING EXPAND

Posted by Bill (not IB) | Friday, November 11th, 2016 | Tears/Fears for Hillary | 85 Comments

firedTo those who said about my earlier post that a few protesters doth not a crisis make:

Riot Declared in Oregon

Thousands Protest Not My President Across US

Racist Mob beats White Man for Voting Trump

Trump’s win is a reminder of the incredible, unbeatable power of racism

Colleges try to Comfort Students Upset by Trump Victory

American University Students Protest Election and Burn Flag

What I’m worried about is there’s already a lot of momentum built up around the “Black Lives Matter” issue, and if that’s transferred to anti-Trump activity, a *real* crisis could arise.

It doesn’t help that so many of the Democrats/liberals are tagging anyone who voted for Trump as an ignorant, bigoted racist. Hillary’s comment about “deplorables” showed the real vision that the left has of Republicans/conservatives, and I think that was reflected at the polls. If you badmouth folks, they *will* react – and unlike the leftists/liberals, instead of rioting, blocking highways, etc. those of us in the “Red” portion of America choose to simply use our votes to deal with matters. The surge of hatred and violence that seems to be building reflects just as accurately how the tolerant, peaceful portion of our society deals with facing ideological frustration.

We were damned as racists for not voting for Obama. We’re damned as racists for voting for Trump. Do I see a pattern here…. ?

And for those who are screaming about “Trump lost the Popular vote”:

He’s not the first, nor will he be the last. Four other presidents have won the electoral college but did not have a majority of votes: John QUinch Adams, Rutherford Hayes, Benjamin Harrison, and George W. Bush. It is completely legal and valid; the way our presidential election system has been set up, the Electoral College is the final voice in determining who has won the election. Those who don’t like it – just rewrite the Constitution.

Oh – and what is Chris Matthews’ leg doing now, eh?


SO LONG, IT’S BEEN GOOD TO KNOW YOU

Posted by Christopher Johnson | Friday, November 11th, 2016 | Tears/Fears for Hillary | 26 Comments

Now Oregon wants out:48er

Two days after Donald Trump was elected president of the United States, two Portlanders have submitted a petition for a 2018 ballot initiative to have Oregon secede from the United States.

On Thursday morning, Jennifer Rollins, a lawyer, and Christian Trejbal, a writer, filed the Oregon Secession Act.

“Oregonian values are no longer the values held by the rest of the United States,” Trejbal said over the phone Thursday.

Those values? “Life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness,” Trejbal said, “plus equality.” 

“Obviously,” he said, the ballot proposal “came about partially in response to the election results on Tuesday.”

“But,” he added, “it’s been developing over time.”

As long as you take care of my oldest sister who lives there, I’d be fine with it.  Vaya con Dios, as I said before.


MIXED MESSAGES

Posted by Christopher Johnson | Thursday, November 10th, 2016 | Trump Triumphs | 10 Comments

For all except the first six months, give or take, of my earthly existence, I’ve lived in the St. Louis area which means that I’m supposed to hate the Chicago Cubs, the oldest professional sports team in this country.  Our baseball interactions with the City of the Big Shoulders go back more than a century, we took their first pro football team (later sending it to Arizona) and their hockey team was the reason why ours got started.

Granted, this is nowhere near as fierce a sports rivalry as Red Sox/Yankees, say, or Texas/Oklahoma.  Stan Musial got his 3,000th hit at Wrigley Field and the folks there that day gave him a long standing ovation.  And I can still remember that terrible day in 2002 when Cardinal pitcher Darryl Kile was found dead in his Chicago hotel room and Cubs catcher Joe Girardi struggled to tell the crowd at Wrigley why there wasn’t going to be a game that day.

So while there’s supposed to be a rivalry, I have to admit that I’m seriously thinking of buying a Cubs jersey:

Jake Arrieta, the Chicago Cubs’ pitching ace and World Series star, delivered a little chin music after Donald Trump was elected president overnight.

He fired off a tweet mid-morning Wednesday in which he told “Hollywood” to “head for the border,” adding, “#illhelpyoupack #beatit.”

Various Twidiots called him anti-Semitic, for some reason.


MY LIFE AMONG THE UNDERCLASS

Posted by Christopher Johnson | Thursday, November 10th, 2016 | From the Editor | 5 Comments

During my recent prolonged period of homelessness, I stayed at this particular place quite a bit.  Often enough for them to recognize me when I came back.  “You know the drill,” a desk assistant told me, laughing, as I checked in:

Fox 2 News has confirmed a door slam sliced off part of a news reporter’s finger during a courthouse confrontation in Clayton.

The court case may mean the end of a troubled motel in Sunset Hills and cost an estimated 20 families their homes.

They’ve been living at the EconoLodge in Sunset Hills but probably not for much longer after a court order filed Wednesday, placed the business in receivership.

Sunset Hills Police had 349 calls here in a recent one-year period, a Sunset Hills Alderman said, including calls for a deadly heroin overdose and suspected prostitution and sex trafficking.

But the TV had more than enough channels to entertain me and the wireless Internet always worked.  But I don’t remember any problems there.

I do remember them at another nearby hotel I stayed at.  One evening, after I’d checked in, I left my room to fill my cooler from the ice machine and saw 6 or 7 St. Louis County police cruisers parked, one after another, right across the way from my room.

I never did see how that one turned out.


DIVIDEND

Posted by Christopher Johnson | Wednesday, November 9th, 2016 | Trump Triumphs | 8 Comments

Last evening, globalism took one in le secteur génital:

The election of Donald Trump as the next U.S. president was met with disbelief and despondency on Wednesday among some United Nations officials and diplomats amid uncertainty surrounding his foreign policy and likely engagement with the world body.

Trump, a Republican, has described the 71-year-old United Nations as weak and incompetent and threatened to pull out of a global deal to combat climate change – a cornerstone of the legacy of U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon, who steps down at the end of 2016 after serving two five-year terms as secretary-general.

“The United Nations is not a friend of democracy, it’s not a friend to freedom, it’s not a friend even to the United States of America,” Trump said during a speech in March to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee.

The United States is a veto-wielding member of the 15-member U.N. Security Council and the largest financial contributor to the United Nations. Washington owes about $1.1 billion, the United Nations said. Republicans have long been reluctant to pay dues, accusing the world body of waste and bias.


DAVID BURGE IS THE BEST THERE IS

Posted by Christopher Johnson | Wednesday, November 9th, 2016 | Trump Triumphs | 20 Comments

Or ever will be:


DEAR AMERICA

Posted by Christopher Johnson | Wednesday, November 9th, 2016 | Tears/Fears for Hillary | 30 Comments

Paul Krugman doesn’t love you any more:

We still don’t know who will win the electoral college, although as I write this it looks — incredibly, horribly — as if the odds now favor Donald J. Trump. What we do know is that people like me, and probably like most readers of The New York Times, truly didn’t understand the country we live in. We thought that our fellow citizens would not, in the end, vote for a candidate so manifestly unqualified for high office, so temperamentally unsound, so scary yet ludicrous.

We thought that the nation, while far from having transcended racial prejudice and misogyny, had become vastly more open and tolerant over time.

We thought that the great majority of Americans valued democratic norms and the rule of law.

It turns out that we were wrong. There turn out to be a huge number of people — white people, living mainly in rural areas — who don’t share at all our idea of what America is about. For them, it is about blood and soil, about traditional patriarchy and racial hierarchy. And there were many other people who might not share those anti-democratic values, but who nonetheless were willing to vote for anyone bearing the Republican label.

I don’t know how we go forward from here. Is America a failed state and society? It looks truly possible. I guess we have to pick ourselves up and try to find a way forward, but this has been a night of terrible revelations, and I don’t think it’s self-indulgent to feel quite a lot of despair.


THE RIOTING HAS STARTED…

Posted by Bill (not IB) | Wednesday, November 9th, 2016 | Tears/Fears for Hillary | 12 Comments

Here’s Northern California’s take on the election:

Protests Erupt in Northern California

This could get interesting…

And also –

Canada Immigration Site Goes Down During Election


BREAKING

Posted by Christopher Johnson | Tuesday, November 8th, 2016 | Trump Triumphs | 76 Comments

Here in Missouri, the Republicans flipped the governorship.  Democratic candidate Chris Koster just conceded to Republican Eric Greitens, a young man who’d never run for any office before.  And as things stand now, Republican Roy Blunt will go back to the US Senate.

UPDATE: From the looks of things, the Republicans look to sweep all the state-wide offices.  And I assume they’ll keep total control of the General Assembly.

UPDATE: ABC just called Georgia for Trump.

UPDATE: Just announced.  Roy Blunt’s going back to Washington.  And the Republicans still control the General Assembly and officially won all the state-wide offices.  Claire McCaskill’s going to be pretty lonely.

UPDATE: It must be getting close.  The media folks are officially freaking out.

UPDATE: Don’t get ahead of yourselves.  But the AP just called Pennsylvania for Trump.

UPDATE: Crap on a frickin’ stick.  2:45 AM Eastern time.  Fox just called the whole thing for Trump.

Hillary conceded.

UPDATE: The Electoral College count is officially at 278 and the media are wildly flailing about.  I can’t wait to see what the leftists actually do.  Should I get my Kickstarter fund going to pay for celeb plane fare out of the country?


PLEASE! VOTE EARLY. VOTE OFTEN. VOTE BILL (not IB).

Posted by Bill (not IB) | Tuesday, November 8th, 2016 | Presidential Election | 14 Comments

billWouldn’t you trust this face? (At the time it was taken, I was serving as a Maori tribal chieftain – for real!)


DAVID BROOKS, MAN OF THE PEOPLE

Posted by Christopher Johnson | Tuesday, November 8th, 2016 | Presidential Election | 27 Comments

I don’t see a great deal of difference between these sentiments of David Brooks and Hillary’s “basket of deplorables” comment of a while back.  Except that Brooksie kills two birds with one stone here, unintentionally explaining why Trump won the GOP nomination in the first place and why American “conservatism” is pretty close to a spent force:

I have a sense that it would have happened anyway and that, at the end of the day, people were going to come home to who they were. And what’s depressed me, frankly, most about this race is, we went into this country a divided nation, and now the chasms are just solidified, so divided along race, divided along gender, urban/rural, college-educated/non-college-educated. We can go down the list.

And, basically, less educated or high school-educated whites are going to Trump. It doesn’t matter what the guy does. And college-educated going to Clinton. Everyone is dividing based on demographic categories.

And, sometimes, you get the sense that the campaign barely matters. People are just going with their gene pool and whatever it is. And that is one of the more depressing aspects of this race for me.

And, well, it’s a campaign of hate. Obama is a campaign of at least hope. At least his first campaign was. This is just a campaign of hate. And, you know, people who don’t like Trump really don’t like Trump. And I guess I’m among them.

And we just saw in our report about the Trump voters in Pennsylvania. Did you see — when they were shouting on the road, did you see anything nice about Trump? No. Send Clinton to jail.

That sort of goes back to my point about demographics. Why is she in Michigan? Because Michigan was — we all thought it would be Florida, South Carolina, Nevada, all the — New Hampshire, the states we have been talking about. But there are a lot of white people in Wisconsin and Michigan.

So we had a lot of good things over the years that were really good for America. I think globalization has been really good for America. I think the influx of immigrants has been really good for America. Feminism has been really good for America.

But there are a lot of people who used to be up in society, because of those three good things, are now down, a lot of high school-educated white guys. And they have been displaced.

And shame on us for not paying attention to that and helping them out. And, therefore, as a result, what happened was, they were alienated, they got super cynical, because they really were being shafted. And so they react in an angry way.


SUN RISES IN EAST

Posted by Christopher Johnson | Tuesday, November 8th, 2016 | Presidential Election | 17 Comments

Boy howdy, nothing gets past The New York Times:

Fox News’s elections guru will play his cello on Tuesday morning, “to clear my head and get ready to do math.” CNN is staging more than a dozen rehearsals with a 25-person on-air team. George Stephanopoulos of ABC News spent his weekend running drills in a studio, practicing swing-state calls with a former intern standing in for the pollster Nate Silver.

But as television news gears up for 2016’s big finale, an intense public distrust in the media is threatening the networks’ traditional role as election night scorekeeper.

There is a divided electorate, big segments of which are poised to question the veracity of Tuesday’s results. Donald J. Trump has refused to say if he will concede in the event of a projected defeat. And new digital competitors plan to break the usual election-night rules and issue real-time predictions long before polls close.

The era of Tim Russert’s famed whiteboard — when network anchors could serve as the ultimate authority on election results — has faded. And scrutiny on big media organizations on Tuesday, when 70 million people might tune in, is likely to be harsher than ever.

I wonder why that would be.  The “serious” news media in this country has only spent this entire campaign writing press releases for Hillary Clinton and letting the Clinton campaign edit their stories.  What in the world does anyone have to be upset about?


DAMN IT, BILL

Posted by Christopher Johnson | Monday, November 7th, 2016 | Constitutional Imbroglio | 14 Comments

🙂 You got me thinking, big dog.  I hate it when you do that:

There was a minor issue raised about the legality of Secession a while in the past; students of history will recall it as “The War Between the States”[He means the War for Southern Independence – CJ]. Kind of parenthetical interjection….. NO, he means “The War of Northern Aggression” – ain’t no Texan that cain’t grasp that basic idea. BILL (chuckle/chortle) Lincoln stood firm on preservation of the Union, which was totally correct – there is no Constitutional right to secede. If a “state” wishes to join the Union, they are free to do so, subject to the guidelines set forth in the Constitution. There is *NO* exit clause; once you join, you’re in, and there’s no procedure to change your mind.

Robin Munn responds:

I disagree. There *IS* an exit clause. It reads: “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”

Anything not prohibited in the Constitution is allowed to the States. And secession is not prohibited anywhere in the Constitution. Therefore, that power is reserved to the States.

In other words, the Tenth Amendment.

Which prompted my little thought experiment.  What if, in the wake of Mr. Lincoln’s election, South Carolina had passed its ordinance of secession, raised its palmetto flags all over the place but otherwise hadn’t reacted like the blithering idiots that they did, never firing on Fort Sumter at all but eventually forcing the US government to abandon it?

What if South Carolina had instead taken the whole issue to court?

They would have cited the Tenth Amendment, of course, along with Jefferson:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

For our own Safety and Happiness, we cannot consent, South Carolina might have argued, to be ruled by a political party that is implacably hostile to one of our institutions (A horrible cause?  Certainly.  But that’s a century and a half of hindsight talking).

What might have happened if South Carolina had gone that route?  Roger Taney was still Chief Justice of the Supreme Court and he wrote the Dred Scott decision.

Have at me again.

What, you think you’re the Black Knight or something? Not Bill

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