Bloody-Minded 2014

I can’t think of a midterm election that has mattered more. Next year’s congressional races will determine President Barack Obama’s legacy. And that’s what his Inaugural speech was all about.

Rallying defeat of the GOP’s House majority and its Senate filibuster veto would pave the way for the progressive change Obama vowed.

This talk that Obama has run his last race is just silly. He’s got one more. And persuading foes he’ll successfully campaign against them might even bear fruit now.

That’s why risking defeat this year on gun control, immigration and climate change makes sense for Obama. Show voters how right-wing Republicans and fake Democrats stand in the way of a better nation.

Now is the time for progressives to find candidates in their communities and states to defeat the crazies, to identify and energize the voters who can get the job done. No matter how hard it might seem, it can be done.

Draw blood on Capitol Hill. No more talk of healing. That’s how Obama gets the Congress he needs next year to make a real difference.

It’s time we get back to being a noble experiment. Change can happen.

89 thoughts on “Bloody-Minded 2014”

  1. And ‘change’ is a wonderful thing, but it is the transition that kills. We still have to go through the miserable experience of culling the culprits.

  2. Best hope for 2014 is that low information voters will stop electing low information candidates like Rand Paul. ;-)

  3. Who has the best handle on the republican move in Virginia to reallocate electoral college votes?
    This seems to me to be a bad precedent and one that is sure to find favor elsewhere.
    For all the legal types here,(Pogo, Craig) what’s the story? Are there any counter measures available? Any federal action that is possible?

  4. tony, that is an excellent article you shared.
    jace,perhaps you have the key to progress: self-votersuppression :) But hopefully they’ll still vote. Just more wisely. Heck, our eligible voter % who vote is shameful!
    ct, from yesterday ( sorry about the late reply ) Yep. You are correct. The optimist in me still has hope. I look at Wisconsin again: the state that elected Ron Johnson(!) just elected Tammy Baldwin. A lot of moderate Republicans made her election possible. Progress!
    Craig, “…a noble experiment. Change can happen.” That’s the best definition of this country I’ve read.
    President Obama: please get back on the campaign trail and support the candidates who support the Progressive agenda. You have an amazing gift to communicate. Fire It Up! Inspiration is a mighty powerful tool.

  5. Jace, I heard about that story and my mouth is still hanging open. I can’t believe it but it’s so classic Republican. How can any of them ever talk about anything moral or ethical when morals and ethics is so un-Republican.

    The only guy who could protect his state against what happened was going to see his President get sworn in, he wasn’t out playing. I guess they were laying in wait for just the right moment to strike, like the snakes in the grass that they are. If they can get away with that then we are all wasting our time carefully studying the candidates. Why even bother to vote at all?

  6. Poor Republicans. No matter how many times they shout Benghazi nothing changes.
    Perhaps they should tackle a real crisis, like black helicopters and re-education camps. ;-)

  7. Were you guys aware that someone could be watching you through the webcam on your computer? I guess I was napping when they told us about that because when I Googled it, it’s not new news. They also report that it’s not even difficult to accomplish.

    One day I had a fleeting thought that maybe that could be possible but blew it off as my just being paranoid. Now I realize that if we can even conceive of something being possible then it probably is.

    I just hooked a chip clip over mine even thought I realize that I wouldn’t be a very interesting victim for observing.

  8. CT,

    This move doesn’t pass the smell test.

    Republicans in the house this cycle got far fewer votes than dems, but still retained their majority in the house due to redistricting. Essentially this is what the GOP wants to do with electoral votes as well. Bad business for sure.

  9. Put a small mirror in front of your webcam and then the hackers will see themselves.

  10. I am still smarting from the 2006 mid-terms. TrailMixers live-blogged through the night as the election overwhelmingly turned our way…then the dust settled, and what I thought was the prize we had won, the power to de-fund the horrible killing war in Iraq, vanished into the night, as Nancy Pelosi’s leadership meant nothing, and the war kept being funded by these new Congress members. Why all those Democrats kept voting to fund Bush’s war, and let the repuggs run rampant over them even in the wake of a crushing electoral defeat just blew my mind. That is when the term “do-nothing-Congress” was resurrected and the approval slide of MOCs went into high gear.
    People who run as Progressives have little chance to win in all but a few districts in all the land, and when one does get elected, he or she immediately casts an oar and rows straight to the center. After the disappointments of 2006, how can we begin to think anything good will arise from the 2014 midterms?
    The Senate actually changed in 2006, but the repuggs continued on, with the neocons in charge, as if it meant nothing. No mid-term election has changed the tide since.

  11. Republicans. They could shout fire in a crowded theater and no one would move.

    Now that’s what I call a trust deficit. ;-)

  12. Dex,

    Great post and all too true.

    That’s why dems. will cave on any meaningful filibuster reform.

  13. The Republicans are sooo worried about our right to bear arms and they want NO limits on what kind of arms we can bear. While they are making all the noise about that right, they are sneaking away all of our other rights. I think we need to be as vocal about all the other things they are doing as we are about this gun issue.

    One thing I think that Republicans are superior at, that’s their talking points. They have a much better system for influencing public opinion than the Dems do here in the south. Like I said yesterday, Fox News is on many TVs in commercial places in the south. Most people watch Fox News at home. The only talk radio that is available is Rush, Hannity et al. If you haven’t noticed they carefully coordinate those talking points on all their media sources. There’s not much of a chance for any liberal influence in the south.

    I know people who are intelligent and who’s values aren’t consistent with those Republican talking point but I hear them quoting those talking point anyway. It’s like they’re brainwashed.

  14. Make DVDs of the hearings for the repugnant reps and centaurs. They can save them for the grandkids. “This is what Grandpa did in the Congress!”

  15. Toots and her husband were over for dinner yesterday evening. While taking a break in excoriating the repug hearing members, we turned on Phil Mickelson, the poor-rich golfer who wants to expatriate because of the unfair tax burden that is being placed upon his broad shoulders.

    We decided to pool our assets to buy him a bus ticket to the nearest border whether that be Canada or Mexico. Bon Chance! or whatever, jerk.

  16. conservative southerners are descended from the same folk who were persuaded to go to war and get their asses shot off for the ultimate goal of making sure that the plantation owners got to keep their slaves. chop it anyway you want to but that’s the deal.

    it’s kind of like they’re proud of stupid.

  17. They want to take our guns. They seem to still hold it against us that we, uh, declared war on them and all that one time. [X]

  18. i keep mine wrapped in oilcloth in an oiled wooden box inside a fireproof leakproof aluminum container buried under 2 feet of soil 30 paces due west from the oaktree and 20 paces due south from the exact center of the ancient fence.

    actually it’s in the closet.

  19. Looks like Kerry and Trent Lott shared the same members’ only barber. That’s bipartisanship. ;-)

  20. reposting this ’cause seems nobody saw it last thread:

    btw, the pat that commented at 6:18 pm is not this pat.

    welcome aboard, pat. cute avatar.

  21. (Reuters) -- North Korea said on Thursday it would carry out further rocket launches and a nuclear test that would target the United States, dramatically stepping up its threats against a country it called its “sworn enemy”.

    The announcement by the country’s top military body came a day after the U.N. Security Council agreed to a U.S.-backed resolution to censure and sanction North Korea for a rocket launch in December that breached U.N. rules.

    North Korea is not believed to have the technology to deliver a nuclear warhead capable of hitting the continental United States, although its December launch showed it had the capacity to deliver a rocket that could travel 10,000 km (6,200 miles), potentially putting San Francisco in range, according to an intelligence assessment by South Korea.

    “We are not disguising the fact that the various satellites and long-range rockets that we will fire and the high-level nuclear test we will carry out are targeted at the United States,” North Korea’s National Defence Commission said, according to state news agency KCNA.

    North Korea is believed by South Korea and other observers to be “technically ready” for a third nuclear test, and the decision to go ahead rests with leader Kim Jong-un, who pressed ahead with the December rocket launch in defiance of the U.N. sanctions.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/01/24/us-korea-north-nuclear-idUSBRE90N03I20130124

  22. 70% of Americans favor abortion rights and the goopers keep trying…and they blame the Democrats for villanizing them?

  23. well, never tho’t the phrase “up to your ass in alligators” was for real until this:

    South African crocodiles ‘in mass escape’ during floods
    About 15,000 crocodiles have reportedly escaped from a farm in South Africa’s far north amid heavy rains and flooding.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-21178793

  24. florida not to be out done in the escaped reptile surreality dept. from todays nyt:

    Florida’s “Python Challenge 2013,” the open-invitation contest organized by the state’s Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. So frustrated are wildlife officials with the prolific Burmese pythons that on Jan. 12 they began a one-month python hunt in South Florida, opening it up to just about anybody over the age of 18. The hunt is taking place mostly on state land, not national park land, which is off limits.

    The only requirement is that contestants must take a training course — online. A prize of $1,000 will be awarded to the hunter who catches the longest snake and $1,500 to the one who “harvests” the most snakes. About 1,300 people have signed up.

    The pythons, considered invasive and uninvited, arrived here as pets. After some escaped or were let loose by fed-up owners, they slithered toward marshy land, mostly in and around the Everglades. There, they snack regularly on native wading birds, gators, deer, bobcat, opossums, raccoons and rabbits. They breed easily, laying 8 to 100 eggs, depending on the size of the female.

  25. It will be difficult for the Dems to win back control of the House due “Gerrymandering.” GOP state legislatures have made it much easier for GOP Reps to get re-elected.

    What is more promising in the short-term is the potential loss of GOP control of many state governments. The Dems took back both houses of the legislature in my state of Maine last November, and our GOP tea party idiot of a governor will probably lose next year. Everyone hates this guy, except for the wingnuts.

    Maybe this isn’t helpful to Obama or the national Dems, but to all those public employees and private sector union members who have been under attack by the state-level GOPs, this will be wonderful.

    “The liberal shift” is bigger than Obama and the national Dems. The MSM focuses too much on the national level and doesn’t pay attention to what’s going on outside the DC Beltway.

    The national Dems, and Obama will be swept along by a massive change in society, the “liberal shift” now under way. Obama won’t be leading; he’ll be trying to keep up. This is a real grass-roots rebellion percolating upward and it will change everything.

    I’ve been waiting 30 years for this, and now it’s here!

  26. Sturg… did you know it’s considered a hate crime in Florida to call someone a cracker. But in Georgia I think it is a point of pride..one local semi pro baseball team is named the Crackers.

    One of the funniest things ever were some of the responses to the contest to replace to the Georgia flag

    The only one I remember is “a big white peach sitting on a ritz cracker”

  27. “LONDON (AP) — Britain urged its citizens Thursday to immediately leave the eastern Libyan city of Benghazi in response to what it described as an imminent threat against Westerners.”

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2013/01/24/uk-threat-libya-westerners-benghazi/1861013/

    We don’t need to be in the ME. If we need to communicate, we have phones, we have computers, we can skype; close the embassies. Bring home our troops and let those countries implode on their own. We don’t need to waste lives and money to be a part of it.


    I wonder what kind of a reader you’d need? :)

    http://www.theatlanticwire.com/technology/2013/01/how-shakespeare-and-mlk-got-encoded-dna/61369/

  28. Sturg
    I bought the McWhiney when you recommended it back in ’98. Wonder what i did with it. :(

  29. Katherine,
    To make that acceptable, it will be a whole grain saltine (which are pretty good with chili).

  30. it’s tough to read but he did a good job. maybe it’s next to the shotgun?

    i don’t know where mine is either…..but then sometimes I also wonder if i ever read it….

  31. Boehner: “So we’re expecting over the next 22 months to be the focus of this administration as they attempt to annihilate the Republican Party. And let me just tell you, I do believe that is their goal—to just shove us into the dustbin of history.”

    “But Obama would not object if somehow the GOP were destroyed, right? “I think he would object,” Carney insisted.”

    http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/ticket/obama-object-annihilation-republican-party-163707723--politics.html

  32. Here’s part of Tammy Duckworth’s reaction to women in combat:
    “As a Veteran who saw combat action, I know firsthand that America’s daughters are just as capable of defending liberty as her sons. Allowing our women in uniform to serve fully is a win for our nation.”
    Bravo Zulu!

  33. you should have seen all the sturm und drang around here and millions of dollars wasted in courts over whether females could attend the Citadel. it was totally and indubitably absurd. the school fought to the bitter end for the right to be stupid. In the end, when forced by courts to admit a woman, they tormented and harassed the girl so that she spent a week in the infirmary before she fled for home. the next year, though, they got a crew of determined little girls who all graduated with honor.
    this was preceded, of course, some years earlier by the fight over whether the school was bound by law to admit black men. (it’s a state supported institution.)

    never a dull moment with those guys. did i tell you it was cadets who fired on the Star of the West from the morris island battery when it was attempting to reinforce and resupply Ft Sumter?

    goobers.

  34. “Because Wednesday’s report associates the symptoms with deployment, Sullivan said, the VA “should expand the geographical definition of the current Gulf War to include the ongoing conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan.”

    “For current war veterans, scientists have connected chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder and bronchiolitis to exposures in Iraq and Afghanistan, including to garbage pits that burned as much as 240 tons of waste in an open pit a day, as well as to dust proved to be laden with bacteria and heavy metals.”

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/01/23/gulf-war-illness-symptoms/1856625/

  35. Daughter spent a nice long weekend in St Augustine. She and hubby explored the Castillo de San Marco along with the other sights that remarkable city has to offer.

    The Castillo was one of two big highlights of a springtime postwar family vacation to Florida in ’46. The other highlight of St Augustine that I still remember was the amount of sulfur dioxide in the water--overpowering for us outlanders. :shock:

  36. st augustine, one of the greatest little towns…love that castillo, i got to see them shoot off the cannon oncet….and when I was a kid there used to be what they called “The Crazy House” on the edge of town…just a little cabin but built on the side of a hill in such a way that balls would roll uphill and people stood diagonally etc. and was capable of inducing vertigo. Last time I was there the house was not.

  37. Poor old Strom. Didn’t have the courage to introduce his daughter to the rest of her family.

    After he died, word surfaced that she, Essie Mae Washington, was coming to South Carolina not only to steal the family fortune, but to sully the patriarch’s name.

    The family was prepared to erect barriers at every point of ingress into the state.

    And then they saw a photo of Mrs Washington; she was the spitting image of her father.

  38. I hope there’s enough lime in the dustbin of history.

    And, I don’t mean slaked lime.

  39. that’s looking to be mighty-like a very uncomfortable dustbin of history.

    The dustbin of history: aptly abbreviated as DOH

  40. I think most legislatures have the power to rescind and replace their redistricting plans. Texas has done so under repugnicans -- I think twice in the last dozen years.

    The important thing is to get the Indies to take a hard left turn. republicans are doing their repulsive best to accomplish this change of course for us.

  41. Sturg
    Jack Bass’s wife is Nathalie Dupree. I have her book Southern Cooking, an excellent primer.

    The only recipe that I thought safe to try was the one for hot sauce which is absolutely excellent (with my secret modifications).

    Most of the rest, while very interesting, are quite high in the calorie department.

  42. Well, link won’t work today, so below is the article, sorry Trail Mixers.

    -Nearly six decades ago, Mississippi created a state Sovereignty Commission to try and block enforcement of federal laws.

    This session, two state lawmakers have introduced legislation to create a committee to help neutralize federal laws and regulations “outside the scope of the powers delegated by the people to the federal government in the United States Constitution.”

    Robert McElvaine, professor of history at Millsaps College, said the bill would do nothing but put Mississippi up for more ridicule. “The neutralization of federal law?” he said. “I am astounded to see such a measure introduced in the 21st century. Do the authors of the bill see Mississippi as part of the United States?”

    He pointed out that the issue of state sovereignty “was settled by a terrible war 150 years ago, as well as by numerous Supreme Court decisions. When John C. Calhoun and South Carolina attempted to nullify federal law in the 1830s, President Andrew Jackson forcefully rejected the concept.”

    George Cochran, professor at the University of Mississippi School of Law, said it’s obvious the bill is unconstitutional.

    Upon learning of the proposed committee, veteran journalist Bill Minor said it sounded like the Sovereignty Commission.

    After the U.S. Supreme Court in 1954 ordered the desegregation of public schools, “the Mississippi Legislature kept passing horrible bills, condemning the federal government,” he recalled. “There was even a bill to arrest any federal officer who tried to serve an arrest on any official of Mississippi who refused to carry out segregation laws.”

    In 1956, the Legislature created the Sovereignty Commission, giving it broad powers to fight any federal effort to segregate. “It’s the same ground we’ve been through before,” Minor said.

    House Bill 490 was sponsored by House Insurance Committee Chairman Gary Chism, R-Columbus, and Ways and Means Committee Chairman Jeff Smith, R-Columbus. The bill now sits in the Constitution Committee awaiting further action.

  43. Hell, Billy, for-profit corporations have been gaming federal laws for years. Why shouldn’t governmental corporations do the same?

    The easy answer, that we all acknowledge, is that they do everything under the sun to avoid following the intent of federal legislation when it suits them.

  44. An interesting essay by Garry Wills at The New York Review of Books

    Southerners were not really trapped in the past, since they were always scheming to get out of the trap. They were defeated but not dumb. With dreams of an agrarian society, they might denounce the industrial north, but they got the funds to bring electricity to large parts of the South from the government’s Tennessee Valley Authority. They wanted and got government-funded port facilities, oil subsidies in Louisiana, highways and airports and military bases.

    But the current South is willing to cut off its own nose to show contempt for the government. Governor Rick Scott of Florida turned down more than $2 billion in federal funds for a high-speed rail system in Florida that would have created jobs and millions of dollars in revenues, just to show he was independent of the hated federal government.
    …………………………………
    The South has decided to be defeated and dumb.

  45. Thanx brother Craig, I get in a hurry and don’t take time to figure out jack crap anymore. Maybe i should slow down since I live in the slowest place in America…

  46. I don’t have much to say ecause I agree with everything already said. I’m enjoying watching the stupidity of these people who have been shown they are wrong but just can’t get themselves to admit it…..yet I don’t doubt their ability to re-invent themselves as some other false prophets.

    I’m trying to link something I think you all would enjoy, and am trying to follow the tools but can’t seem to. It’ll take a while but I’m determined.

  47. No, it’s not right, but if I got this far, I should be able to figure it out.

  48. bethy i’m sorry this isn’t easier. i just don’t know how else to explain. you highlight the text in your comment that you want to link, click the link button and paste in the url

  49. Apparently this isn’t the only thing like this -- hope it’s not redundant.

  50. Thanks,Craig -- I coudn’t have done it without you, literally. I remember seeing others get that advice but didn’t
    pay enough attention!

    All I hear the repubs saying is, “Yer not
    the boss of me!” It’s arrested development, brought to national attention by the most arrested of all,
    Sarah Palin.

    By the way, does Wayne LaPierre’s style remind you of anybody?

  51. I meant his hair style.

    That’s it for me. I’ve been an idiot enough for one day.

  52. Hummm, a federal prosecutor, with good connections with the FBI, to head up the Security and Exchange Commission.
    If this keeps up I may have to take back all the bad things I’ve said about Obama.
    Obama sends tough prosecutor to police Wall Street

    After weeks of vetting, courting and grappling, it appears that President Obama finally found his top cop for Wall Street. And no, it wasn’t someone who can easily be identified with the industry — unless you consider organized crime and terrorism branches of modern finance.

  53. xrepub, good job linking, but youtube videos can be directly embedded in comments, see “Add Video in Comments” in drop-down menu at “HELP” button above

  54. Ha, Craig,
    I’ve been wondering about Bill as well.. Bills last post was that he was sensing Xenophobia here at TM.. I posted to him but i doubt he saw it.. I don’t know if he will ever be back, hope so…

  55. Yep Tony, I don’t understand what happened there. Bill’s posts were really interesting. We prickly self-absorbed Americans need an outsider calling out our faults now and then. What’s wrong with that?

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