Tag Archives: Rove
And How the Big Media Speculators Got It Wrong Again
The usual Big Media Punchinellos were out in force the past few days, blaring and bleating the Beltway Conventional Wisdom that the Democratic Party’s loss of the gubernatorial elections in Virginia and New Jersey are a sure referendum on Obama Administration policies. This is the sort of doomed facile reasoning found in the bottom of a Washington cocktail glass typical of Our Pundit Class who, from non-existent Iraq WMD to Fred Thompson’s popularity with voters, can never seem to fit the square peg in the round hole, pound though they might.
A brief review of the Dem candidates in VA and NJ clearly shows why progressives and like-minded independents didn’t bother to vote for Creigh Deeds in Virginia or Jon Corzine in New Jersey, and it had nothing to do with Obama. For various reasons explained below, they were both terrible candidates.
Creigh Deeds: In an era of change, Deeds was a shambling throwback, a dismal campaign clunker with four flat tires, who rejected Obama’s advice and help until it dawned on him in the final weeks he was going to lose in a landslide. He ran a miserably negative campaign, devoid of ideas, and presented his pap on toast so dry even peppy Dem loyalists fought to stay awake during his speeches. A Dem Blue Dog so blue he threatened to opt out of a public option should it become available to Virginians, he was nearly as conservative as his GOP opponent Bob McDonnell. Why leave the house to vote when the choice is between a Republican and a Dem who thinks like a Republican? Seen clearly, this was a referendum, and portent of the future, for Blue Dog Dems rather than President Obama.
Jon Corzine: The one-time ‘Garden State’ US Senator who was just bounced from the governor’s mansion is a Goldman Sachs Golden Boy who made piles of money on Wall Street and insists on spending it on vanity campaigns. Why he doesn’t just buy a new summer home or sumptuous overpriced yacht instead of squadering his fortune to impose himself on our political process is beyond me, but Corzine has never shown much talent for governing once elected, and what few things he has accomplished were always moderate to the point of invisibility. Jon is the kind of drab Dudley Do-Nothing the Democratic Party needs to send packing, if they expect to keep the majority in the future. Again, the portentiousness of Corzine’s defeat was not his affiliation with Obama’s policies, but the yellow line up the middle of his back from avoiding tenaciously either the right or left lane. He will not be missed, at least by this writer.
The point? Neither of them were progressives and didn’t stir independents or liberal Dems to go out and vote for them.
And now to stare into the crystal but not Kristol ball for some predictions on the Republican winners of those two elections:
Or, Nero Was No Hero
But one of the good things about reading history is you learn a good deal. And, we know for sure that the big spending programs of the New Deal did not work. In 1940, unemployment was still 15%.”
— Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY), speaking the untruth of the powerful, Feb. 6, 2009.
“[O]ne of the things that really has gotten dumber about our culture: the media constantly talks about truth as if it were always equidistant from two points. In other words, sometimes the truth is one-sided.” 
“[I]t’s exactly like saying ‘so-and-so says, two plus two equals five. But, of course, mathematicians say that it really equals four.’ The mathematicians are right. The people who say that two plus two equals five are wrong. The media blurs that constantly.”
— Susan Jacoby, from Bill Moyers’ Journal, PBS, Feb. 15, 2008.
That great economic historian, Republican Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, took to the floor of the Senate last week to excoriate the memory of FDR and claim the New Deal didn’t end the Great Depression. In fact, Roosevelt’s New Deal programs put millions of average Americans to work and reduced unemployment from a high of over 35 percent to 14 percent. Aside from that, if FDR was such a failure, why did he win by 62.6 percent of the popular vote, and 98.5 percent of the electoral vote, in 1936, and 55 percent in 1940, with 84.6 of the EV? Why was he retained in office for 12 years, from 1932 until his death in 1945, the longest-serving president in our history, if he accomplished nothing toward solving the primary issue of that time the economic crisis? Some smart reporter should ask McConnell those questions.
“Only with the New Deal’s rehabilitation of the financial system in 1933-35 did the economy begin its slow emergence from the Great Depression.”
— Ben Bernanke, the Republican-picked Fed chief, from his book, “Essays on the Great Depression.”
“I ask you to judge me by the enemies I have made.”
— President Franklin D. Roosevelt
In his first press conference on February 9, Obama put the screws to the GOP, albeit wrapped in enough padding that no blood was drawn but, to mix metaphors, this is Obama’s style wear them down with civility while you score with shots to the gut and dance away. Our ‘Gentleman Jim’ President nimbly peppered the punch-drunk Republicans just as ably as the original did in 1892 to win the heavyweight crown from the blundering beast that was John L. Sullivan who had only his ‘strong right arm’ as a weapon.
Pushed by such withered toads as McConnell, blatant numbskulls like Mike Pence of Baghdad street bazaars are ‘just like any open-air market in Indiana in the summertime’ fame, and the inchoate babblings of the evidently very corrupt new RNC chair Michael Steele, the GOP is collectively lurching toward irretrievable disaster, one every bit as bad as anything the Dimbulb Son who just left the White House wrought — you know, the one whose name must never be mentioned in public by any Republican ever again. They seem determined to take the mean-spirited, unpopular opinion on nearly every issue, just to gratify a shaky base of fringe nutcases, religious retrogrades, Fox News employees, Wall Street Journal editorial board members, Coulter cultists, racist rednecks, professional malcontents, crumb-bum lobbyists, and off-shored-assets tycoons channeling Leona Helmsley.
Coverage of the Big Stuff of 2008, in the form of cheesy top ten lists and lofty-worded think pieces, will be churned out endlessly by Our Corporately-Owned Media over the next few weeks, so here are some of the lesser-reported annoyances, intrusions on sanity, and other head-smackers of the year past.
The Good: It’s a new year and Obama takes office in less than 20 days! (Happy 2009, BTW.)
The Bad: Bush and Cheney can still stir up trouble in their ‘Final Days.’
The Ugly: What if they decide not to leave?
The Good: The already-weakened Republican Party is splitting apart in a war between the ‘Jesus Camp’ Christopublicans and the Neocon Corporate Pragmatists. (The true principled conservatives having ditched the GOP years ago.) The latter are willing to bend rather than break; the former can’t, since they arrogantly believe, apparently without the assistance of hard drugs, that their Invisible Omnipotent God of the Infinite Universe Who Hates Liberals and Homos has nothing better to do than whisper in their ears what kind of retail politics and holy wars against his other creations will set them straight with Heaven.
The Bad: There’s a good chance the NCP will dump the Republicans entirely and put all their money into the Dems, which will have the result of making the Dems as debased and corrupt as the GOP.
The Ugly: Even though the Theocrats-for-a-Better-Armageddon are a small minority, the GOP in their hairy paws will become a rural party of ranting rubes, bedeviled boobs, slick hicks, hypocritical hucksters, predatory politicians, snake-handling simpletons, and mumbling morons (not that it mostly isn’t already) and, thanks to our unique system of apportioning two senators to each state no matter what the population (another nasty legacy of the era of slavery), the Christopublicans will continue to wield enough influence to block legislation and stir up other governmental mischief to the detriment of us all. The future of the Republican Party might very well be an army of pious Puritan dunderheads marching in righteous lockstep, infecting the US body politic like a bad case of psoriasis it wont kill you, but it can be damned aggravating.
The Good: Speaking of Sarah Palin, her 18-year-old daughter Bristol had a healthy baby recently.
The Bad: As Bart of Bartcop fame wrote, “[Sarah] Palin promised her daughter ‘and the young man’ would get married but that was during the campaign so she can’t be held to it.” So, now that Bristol’s bun is out of the oven, where is the fuming outrage of the Big Media and the Christopublicans that she’s officially an unwed mother and, since Ma holds down a gub’mint job, she’s being supported by taxpayer money?
The Ugly: The kid’s father, Levi Johnston, remains a proudly ignorant redneck oaf, and he just went to work for a ‘let’s-rape-the-wilderness’ energy company.
The Good: A Democrat has finally vowed to fight back against Republican smears and refuses to cave in to their demands.
The Bad: That Democrat is the convicted-by-the-media-without-a-trial Governor of Illinois, Rod Blagojevich.
The Ugly: Here is the dumb-bunny guilt-by-location smear the RNC and every right-wing website will be repeating ad nauseum as long as Obama is president, even if Blago is cleared of all charges: “Obama and Blagojevich are both from Chicago, Illinois, which is, like, the most corrupt city and state in the union the FBI guy said so! and, hey, common sense says they must both then be completely corrupt, right? This is another one of those unanswered questions about Obama that the public deserves to hear the full truth about!” 2010 BM pundit’s comment: “Let’s say ‘hello’ to Illinois’ newly-elected Republican Governor Patrick Fitzgerald! At least he’s ethical, even if he couldn’t convict Blagojevich of anything!”
The Good: Illinois finally has a US Senator to replace Obama, a man with a clean and honorable record, former IL Attorney General Roland Burris.
The Bad: He is being morphed into Blago’s Rev. Wright by the scandal-happy ‘Whitewaterized’ Big Media, eager to toss him into the same ‘guilty-even-if-he-hasn’t-been-convicted-of-anything’ pot with Blagojevich. Burris is now ‘tainted’ just because he accepted the appointment. Note to the Big Media: What about all of those prominent Washington Senators of the Republican persuasion Mitch McConnell, John Ensign, Saxby Chambliss, Richard Shelby, Orrin Hatch, et al — who openly dined and danced with the likes of Jack Abramoff and Karl Rove? Oh, right Rove hasn’t been convicted of any crime but when has that stopped you? (Hey, the Clintons weren’t convicted of any crime in the Whitewater land deal; and no crime was even committed in the ‘Travelgate’ fiasco, but that didn’t matter they were still media-created ‘scandals’ that filled up newspaper columns and media airtime for years.) Lack of conviction, so to speak, certainly hasn’t been any bar to gleefully drubbing Blagojevich and Burris with the corruption stick. Abramoff is in prison and Rove is being subpoenaed and investigated all over the place for bribery, fraud and other assorted dishonesty, yet their close connections to prominent Republicans, not to mention the White House, somehow doesn’t carry the same ‘taint’ of corruption? Is the BM afraid of the GOP High and Mighty, or is it just your ingrained conservative bias showing?
The Ugly: Congressional and Illinois state Democrats are incredibly doing the Republicans’ job for them, sticking the blade in deep and twisting it not only with Blago, but now Burris, too. Hey, dingbat Dems, a simple ‘innocent until proven guilty, it’s the American way’ would be the way to go.
There’s more below the fold…
— Or, At Least, Someone Like Her
Centuries ago, before personal computers, Blackberries, cell phones and The Google, Your Decrepit Tattler worked for a company that published a glossy magazine in a mid-sized, Midwestern US city. The glossy was eponymously named after the city, and the company also owned the local civic-booster travel guide and an FM radio station.
One day the word went out – the company had hired that year’s winner of the state beauty pageant to flack for the magazine, and proudly announced that the owner/publisher was confident she would go on to become Miss America, thereby enhancing the magazine’s ‘national prestige and image.’ All of us Worker Bees were ordered to come up with ways to promote the wonderfulness of Wendy Jo Stepford – her real name has been lost in the mists of age, but that’s a serviceable substitute – making sure we ‘excited’ local and state media coverage of her and, of course, the magazine for which she stood.
Our Advertising Director Ron, the dog, eagerly took it upon himself to be her personal escort and tutor, and arranged photo-ops around town to display her at various events – inaugurating the Oktoberfest celebration, cutting the ribbon at a car dealership opening, saluting the interstate trucking industry, dining at a new trendy restaurant – where she could smile with incredibly large teeth, open her eyes unnaturally wide, and proclaim forgettable hooey with the breathy guileless sincerity of a pretty 20-year-old in a miniskirt.
At first, the plans of the owner/publisher went smoothly – wherever she went, Wendy Jo attracted crowds of young women asking her about her choice in cosmetics and wardrobe, and leering old lechers who lusted to be her Sugar Daddy, and the media couldn’t get enough of her blandly sweet persona and trite, platitude-laden lexicon. Plus, she looked good in a two-piece bathing suit – somewhat incongruous for a German beer festival where she was posed with ruddy men in lederhosen, but it put her picture on the front page of the city’s highest-circulation newspaper.
The first crack in Wendy Jo’s edifice occurred during that suds-soaked Teutonic rave-up when she was asked about the history of Oktoberfest – they might as well have asked her to define Quantum Mechanics. She paused for a long uneasy moment, eyes practically bugging out of her head in naive intensity while her mouth froze in a large-mouthed professional beauty contestant grin; then came the groaner, delivered brightly: “Uh, those Nazis in Germany had a lot of bad stuff about them, but I think we can all agree that Oktoberfest was a pretty darn good idea!” Oh, you betcha! Gemütlichkeit!