Hillary Hate and How to Cure It – Introduction


Do you know who one of the most admired women in politics was back in 2009? Here’s a hint: she’s currently running for president.

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66% approval rating in 2009

Hillary was quite widely admired by many back in 2009 when she was selected as Secretary of State. And during her time at the State Department, she maintained a very high favorable rating. Upon leaving the office, she was almost as well-liked as she had been when she went in, and that was after Benghazi. To the left, she was a strong person, standing up against a Republican backed witch hunt, and someone we all generally liked.

Of course that was before she made the mistake of running for president.

Now her favorable ratings are in the toilet, and she ranks only slightly higher than Republican Party Presidential Nominee Donald Trump (no matter how many times I type that, it still doesn’t make sense). She’s currently polling in a statistical dead-heat, and her chances of winning the general election are at a mere 59.2% according to Fivethirtyeight’s “polls plus” predictions.

Now much of this is caused by hate of Hillary on the right. They’ve hated her ever since she crawled up out of Arkansas, and they’ll never give her any slack. Millions wasted on pointless investigations of everything from Whitewater, to Benghazi, to the email scandal, and they still aren’t done with her. I’ll wager that if she does win, and the House and Senate remain under GPO control, they’ll continue investigating every possible scandal and try to delegitimize her presidency in a way that’ll make their treatment of Obama look like a love-in.

I’ll never reach those people; no one will. They’re suffering from Clinton Derangement Syndrome, and nothing is going to make them view her in a rational fashion. So this article isn’t for them.

This will be, instead, a series of articles for those in the center and on the left. Those who are waffling in their support of Hillary, or who are outright against her. Those who are considering anti-science candidate Jill Stein, or anti-sanity candidate Gary Johnson. Those who can’t bring themselves to support her, but so often can’t articulate why.

This mini-series of articles is for you.

It will begin tomorrow, when I will address some of the specific claims those on the left have with regard to Hillary; basically the belief that she’s a DINO, or a Democrat in name only.

On Monday, I’ll address the specific ways in which she is better than Donald Trump, and why it’s important as Hell that all rational people support her over him.

After that, I’ll examine some of the various lies about the Clintons; many of which you might well believe yourself.

I’ll continue on with the cold equations of why a third-party vote is a waste, and basically amounts to a vote for Trump.

I’ll wind everything up with a summary of what we’ve learned and why it’s important as fuck that we elect Hillary.

I hope those of you who are anything other than Trump supporters will join me on this little journey. And at the end, I hope you’ll find yourselves happy to vote for Hillary, happy to support her, and will come to realize just how fantastic she really is.

And if you have any questions, or comments, or anything you’d like me to talk about, please let me know! I’m always happy to have feedback.

When Past is Prologue


Let me take you back to the halcyon days of 2000, when America faced a choice between two candidates. One was bland. He was a bit of a policy wonk, who promised to basically continue the slow, steady, upward course that the incumbent president had put us on. The other was a fairly inexperienced former governor who was often described as a man who voters could see themselves having a beer with.

Most of the electorate were rather “meh” on these two choices, and some of them embraced a third party option; they voted for Ralph Nader. He was the Green Party candidate, and enough people voted for him in Florida to throw the election to George W Bush. So we got him. And you remember what that was like, right?

George W. Bush

I’d post some idiotic quotes from him, but I’m spoiled for choice.

This is a man who led our nation down a very dark path, embracing illegal detention, the suspension of the Geneva Convention, war crimes, and torture. He was also a rabid denier of science (much like Jill Stein, btw, though in a different direction), and helped exacerbate the global climate change situation.

If you call yourself a liberal and you think we were better off with Bush II than we would have been with Gore then you are, quite simply, an idiot.

You’re also an idiot if you’re a liberal and plan to vote for anyone other than Hillary. You are clearly someone for whom liberal principles don’t really matter, and you just want to stick your finger in the eye of “the Man” by voting for Jill Stein or whatever.

For those of you who are thinking about this, may I suggest you read this article in Slate? It’s all about Nader’s campaign, and it’s a good read. I suggest you check it out, and remember what can happen when you embrace someone who won’t win. And please tape the following quote to your monitor:

It is not corporate propaganda that turns presidential voting into a binary choice—it is the unwieldy electoral system outlined in the Constitution, in which a candidate must win a majority of electoral votes to emerge victorious. In parliamentary systems, coalitions of parties can form governments. In ours, the coalition-building has to happen inside the party, since otherwise an outright Electoral College victory is impossible. This reality is so basic that it feels patronizing to describe it and yet every four years, a sliver of highly mobilized citizens emerge who think they can wish it away.

Cigarettes and Guns


There’s a product out there that kills thousands of people a year. Yet it’s glamorized heavily in popular culture. It’s viewed as being very fundamental to the American experience. People bring them places they shouldn’t, and want to bring them everywhere, despite a growing tide of concern that maybe such things shouldn’t be everywhere.

I’m talking, of course, about cigarettes.

Anti Smoking NYC

Pictured: death sticks

Or am I talking about guns?

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Pictured: death sticks

 

InnWhen I was a kid, back in the 1970s, smoking was common. Like really common. Like to an extent that people under 40 have a tough time picturing.

Imagine that every restaurant you go to, you’re asked, “Smoking or non-smoking?” Imagine ashtrays on the tables at Denny’s, Burger King, McDonald’s. Imagine ashtrays inside department stores, and even people smoking on airplanes.

I remember when the first anti-smoking laws really began to come down. It was so controversial! The idea of banning people from smoking inside bars, restaurants, and even airplanes, was something that was met with a lot of pushback from many quarters.

Compare this to laws today regarding guns. In Arizona, they’re legal to bring into pretty much any business unless that business posts up a sign saying not to. They’re widely regarded as being integral to the American identity, and, much like with cigarettes, they’re backed by an extremely powerful lobby that makes it hard to pass laws regarding them. Hell, just like the tobacco lobby, the gun lobby is doing to do everything they can to prevent even doing research into how dangerous the product is.

But things changed, and the laws changed, and now cigarettes are banned in most civilized places. And what caused this to happen?

There was a shift in culture. People banded together and began to agitate against cigarettes being glorified in movies and TV shows, and began to put a stop to tobacco companies advertising in public places and sponsoring sports teams. The culture shifted, and soon the laws shifted, too.

And that’s what needs to happen with guns. We need, as a culture, to push them away, to stop making them so glamorous and wonderful. We need to remember that they’re instruments of death, designed only to kill.

That’s what it’ll take for gun control to happen. It’ll take us working together to make things like this culturally unacceptable:

In 29 seconds that’s about ten shots of people pointing guns at things. I mean really. Is that at all necessary? No.

Now I’m not stupid. I know this change will take time. Decades, most likely, before we see any real shift. But cigarettes weren’t made into objects of scorn overnight, and nor will guns be. But we should try.

So how do we do this? Stop seeing movies where the whole plot is all about people shooting at each other. Stop playing video games where the whole plot is all about people shooting each other (or, to be fair, shooting space demons). If we can lose our collective hard-on over such things, it’ll be a good start.

It’s at least worth a try.

How Will it Go Down?


Pretty much like this.

Capture

Now there are still a few months to go, and many ways that this can go horribly wrong, but I think this is where we’ll end up in November.

A few points.

  • I kept Arizona, my home state, red. I think it’ll go blue in time, but I just don’t see it happening right now. Close, but no cigar.
  • I think Georgia will indeed go for Clinton, though not by much.
  • I also think South Carolina will flirt a bit with swing status, but end up going red and by a fair margin.
  • Missouri “feels” like it’s going to go blue this year. This isn’t much more than a feeling, but there you are.
  • Trump might do ok in the Rust Belt, but I don’t see him actually winning any of the states there.
  • He certainly won’t win Florida.
  • Possible surprise states? Alaska, Utah, Montana, Kansas, and the Dakotas.

I could, of course, be very wrong here. Clinton could just narrowly squeak past, or could even lose, though I doubt that’s going to happen. For it to occur, we’d need something like the following:

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Not impossible. Trump could, as I said, do very well in the Rust Belt. If he flipped Wisconsin, Ohio, Michigan, Colorado, North Carolina, and New Hampshire, he’d have it done. This isn’t likely, but it’s not impossible.

Now for my plausible, but really, really unlikely dream scenario.

Capture2

Is this at all likely? No. But it’s possible, and I do love the thought of Johnson winning in Utah. The Mormons seem to really hate Trump, and while I don’t see them being willing to vote for Hillary, I could see a third party person there.

We’ll know soon if I’m right or wrong, but for now I am at least quite hopeful.

John McCain – Profiles in Spinelessness


John McCain is someone for whom I used to have quite a bit of respect. Then came the 2008 presidential election, and that went out the window.

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The man who inflicted Sarah Palin on us.

McCain is currently displaying a case of spinelessness when it comes to Donald Trump. He’s doing all the, “Oh, he’s said terrible things, but I still support him,” nonsense. This after Trump advocated torture, war crimes, and other assorted nastiness.

And why? McCain is running in a reasonably tough primary. That’s it. He’s supporting Trump because he’s afraid that if he doesn’t, he’ll be voted out of office.

So having already sullied his legacy by everything he did in the 2008 election, and everything he’s done since, he’s now continuing to wreck it by supporting Donald Trump.

You know, I don’t expect McCain to come out in support of Hillary, though I think he should. I think everyone who stands against Trump, and is a Republican, ought to say to vote Hillary for president and vote Republican for everything else. But McCain doesn’t even have to do that. All he has to do is disavow Trump completely, and if he does so before the primary election, I’ll get some respect back for him.

Some. Not much.

You know who I have developed a grudging respect for? My other senator, Jeff Flake. Not someone that I like or agree with, but he’s at least standing up to Trump. For that, I can have some respect.

For the spineless wimp that McCain has become? No.

In It to Win It?


There’s been a lot of speculation lately that Donald Trump, who, let me remind you, is the Republican party nominee for president, might actually drop out of the race.

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Such small hands illustrating a very small point.

This speculation comes from various sources, and is fueled by recent news that the Trump campaign has spent $0.00 on TV ads. Yes, your local used car dealership has spent more on TV ads to sell you a car than Donald Trump has spent on ads trying to convince you to make him president. Frankly, I think I’d prefer a used car salesman as president. He’d be more likely to be honest.

Now do I think Trump is actually planning to pack it in? Well…here’s what I think has happened with him.

I think he’s in way over his head, and some small (snicker!) part of him knows this. I think he wants to go back to being famous and loved, or at least tolerated, by many. I think he misses this. I think he has a subconscious desire to not be president, because failing at being the most powerful man in the world would be devastating to him. Trump’s ego couldn’t handle him going down in history like W has.

So I believe that subconscious desire is part of why he’s been performing so badly lately and ramping up the crazy to a whole new level. It’s also clear that he’s doing his best to have excuses ready when/if he loses.

But making ones excuses in case one loses is not the same as dropping out. So is Trump going to do that?

I doubt it, but if it happens, it’ll happen after the first debate, but before the second. He’s going to get his clock absolutely cleaned by Hillary Clinton. His ego will be severely damaged, and I think he’d have a tough time subjecting himself to it again.

No. He’ll reason that it’s better to drop out, blame the media, blame the crooked politicians, and blame the rigged electoral system. That way, he can leave the race, and none of it will be his fault.

That does lead to the interesting question of what happens next if he does bow out. We’ve never had the nominee of a major party actually drop out (or die, for that matter), after being nominated. I suspect the GOP would cast about as quickly as they could for someone at the tail end of their career and convince them to take one for the team.

No matter what happens, let’s all take this whole fiasco as a lesson, and not allow someone like this to get so close to power ever again.

#weretherealvictims


There’s a woman out there that I hadn’t heard of until today. Her name is Kim Rhode, and she’s an Olympic shooter. She’s done extremely well in the Olympics, beginning in 1996, and going on to the current Olympics, where she’s won a bronze medal.

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Congrats!

This really is an impressive achievement, which makes it all the more surprising that the media isn’t covering her at all!

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Gasp!

Shocking! I mean, if it were true. Which isn’t. Because NBC, NPRThe Daily MailUSA Today,  Fox Sports, among others, have, in fact, covered her wins. Other outlets have chosen to cover her from the perspective of gun control laws, her opinions of them, and mass shootings.

So she is being covered. She is not being “ignored”. This meme is inaccurate and a lie that’s written for purely political purposes because #weretherealvictims. Yes, the people represented by what is probably the most powerful political lobby in all of American history are the ones who are really under threat.

Fuck that.

To be fair, sponsors do seem to be keeping their distance, but I doubt that’s because of anything she’s said about the Second Amendment. I’m pretty sure it’s much more because guns are controversial, and sponsors prefer to avoid that.

Now, what are some more rational, likely reasons why she hasn’t received the media coverage that, say, Michael Phelps has?

Basically, it’s the sport itself. It’s not as TV-friendly as some other Olympic sports. I can guarantee you that there also wouldn’t be that much coverage if someone got medals in six consecutive Olympic games in badminton, yachting, equestrian events, or judo. It’s just not a sport that most people pay attention to.

It is true that people didn’t pay too much attention to swimming until Michael Phelps came along (though Mark Spitz would disagree), but there was some attention paid. Also, not to take anything away from Rhode, but getting medals in six consecutive games isn’t on the same level as getting 28 medals across four games. It’s impressive as hell, but pales in comparison.

Also, this displays a serious problem with the way the right wing addresses various issues. Rhode’s achievement was indeed covered in the mainstream media. A few seconds of Google proved that. It wasn’t shouted from the rooftops, but it was indeed covered.

When you (the generic you, not you specifically), share things like this without checking to see if they’re accurate, it makes you look like a fool. This meme is simply wrong, and exists, as I said, to further a political agenda and paint the picture of the right wing being victimized by the media. It’s dishonest at best, and an outright lie.

Finally,  I find it rather insulting to take the very real achievement of Rhode and twist it for political purposes. Shame on the people who do this sort of thing.