Category Archives: Politics

Happy Thanksgiving

This year I feel incredibly lucky at Thanksgiving.  Nobody at my feast will have voted for Donald Trump.

Nobody.

And they will all be relatives.

Didn’t I tell you that I’m lucky?  It’s true — I will gladly spend then next two days cooking for them.

But I know that not everybody is as lucky as me.  I feel your pain, I really do.  One of my brothers voted for Trump, as did a nephew and, I’m pretty sure, a great nephew.  But none of them are coming — they don’t usually come so I did not banish them.

It’s hard to talk to folks about this election and why we feel so strongly that the wrong side won.

It’s hard to talk about this election and not place all Trump voters into Hillary’s stupid basket of deplorables.

It’s hard to talk about this election to Trump voters and not slap them upside the head for being stupid, for placing our democracy at risk, for threatening the future of the planet either by a Trump tiff or by his unwillingness to accept that climate change is real and to do something about it.

For those of you who need assistance, I give you this video — with a shout-out to my friend Karen:

 

 

Not that it will change anything.

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you who are celebrating.

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My Challenge — Make Me Eat Crow

Last Wednesday as I drove to work heartbroken over Trump’s victory, John Lennon’s song Imagine came on the radio.

It didn’t improve my mood any.  Because I was already imagining plenty.

Earlier today while waiting for a doctor’s appointment, I read a blog from my hometown that posted the Democratic Town Committee’s commitment to not permit bullying, acts of hate or discrimination in town.

Expecting to see universal support for this stance, I was shocked to see the first commenters take a stand, not exactly against, the DTC, but pooh-poohing the need for such a stand.

Naturally, I commented that those commenters obviously hadn’t been paying attention during the campaign.  The result was a fairly brief round and round with the commenter, named Dan.  As it turned out, Dan was a troll; his comments were removed from the blog along with several damn good ones of mine, I will add.

But he made me think.

When George W. Bush was elected, I worried.  I didn’t think he had the brain capacity to be president, and didn’t think he could handle the job.  Obviously, I didn’t predict 9/11 or the Iraq war, but I did see in him a bully and a person too easily goaded.  I was right.  His policies led us into a stupid, unnecessary war.  His economic policies led us into a severe, catastrophic economic crisis that only the end of his presidency and Obama’s election prevented from becoming a full-blown economic Depression.

I also thought that Dick Cheney would be a good, calming, fatherly influence.  My bad.  And his, actually.

With Trump, I am afraid on a deeper level.  I’ve expressed those fears many times, so I’ll just say that nothing he has said since his election, and nothing he has done since his election, and nobody he has appointed/is considering appointing has allayed any of my fears.  He is an ignorant, hate-filled bully with small fingers who will have access to the nuclear codes in two months.

But you know what?  This is where this morning’s troll comes in.

I would love to be wrong.

I would love for each and every Trump voter to work towards proving me that I was crazy to worry.

  • Prevent bullying/hate crimes/discrimination.  Step in at your own risk when necessary.  If you say Trump will not increase these things, show me I’m wrong in thinking he will.
  • Protect social programs.  Write to Congress.  Let them know that programs like Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security are programs Americans have relied upon for decades.  Show me that I’m wrong in thinking that these programs will all be gutted to my and the middle and lower class populations’ detriment.
  • Protest against any new military actions.  If there’s time, that is.  If Trump acts in a huff, then, you have my permission to bend over and kiss your own ass goodbye.
  • Pay attention.  Be knowledgeable about current events.  Remember who is doing what.
  • Assess the economic impacts by something other than your own tax returns.  What is happening in the housing market, the jobs market.  Have their been improvements in infrastructure;
  • Evaluate the importance of the industries that are succeeding in Trump’s America.  Did Trump deliver his promises to restore the coal industry.  Manufacturing?
  • Remember your history.  If you believe, as my troll does, that comparisons of Trump’s America to Hitler’s Germany, watch what they do and prevent them from repeating history.  (That’s why we study history, isn’t it?)
  • Show me that the Federal judges appointed at all levels are interested in justice and not in advocating from the bench a la Scalia.  Make sure they protect the rights of the folks who can’t stand up for themselves.
  • Vary your news sources — none of them provide the full story or an unbiased story
  • Consider the other side’s position — and I will try to do the same

The list of things that concern me, of course,  goes on and on.

Make it so that in 4 years, I will look back at the fears I (and so many others) had about Donald Trump’s election and laugh at myself for my foolish fears.

Make me eat crow

I will gladly eat crow.  If there are any left given Trump’s plan to gut all sorts of environmental programs and the climate change pact.

eating-crow-1

Photo Credit:  https://c2.staticflickr.com/2/1127/1009248999_385551a5f6.jpg.  But you know I got it from Google Images.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The problems of victory are more agreeable than those of defeat, but they are no less difficult.
Winston Churchill, statesman and prime minister

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A Snowball’s Chance

A friend of mine sent this petition on to me.  I’m not really one for petitions.  I agree with research I’ve read that says that signing petitions makes people believe they are actually doing something.  And well, hollow gestures are, hollow.

Still, what the hell.  I signed this petition, and thought I’d forward it to you.  Remember what is at stake.

*****

Electoral College: Make Hillary Clinton President on December 19

trump-hillary

On December 19, the Electors of the Electoral College will cast their ballots. If they all vote the way their states voted, Donald Trump will win. However, they can vote for Hillary Clinton if they choose. Even in states where that is not allowed, their vote would still be counted, they would simply pay a small fine – which we can be sure Clinton supporters will be glad to pay!

We are calling on the Electors to ignore their states’ votes and cast their ballots for Secretary Clinton. Why?

Mr. Trump is unfit to serve. His scapegoating of so many Americans, and his impulsivity, bullying, lying, admitted history of sexual assault, and utter lack of experience make him a danger to the Republic.

Secretary Clinton WON THE POPULAR VOTE and should be President.

Hillary won the popular vote. The only reason Trump “won” is because of the Electoral College.

But the Electoral College can actually give the White House to either candidate. So why not use this most undemocratic of our institutions to ensure a democratic result?

SHE WON THE POPULAR VOTE.

There is no reason Trump should be President.

“It’s the ‘People’s Will'”

No. She won the popular vote.

“Our system of government under our Constitution says he wins”

No. Our Constitution says the Electors choose.

“Too many states prohibit ‘Faithless Electors'”

24 states bind electors. If electors vote against their party, they usually pay a fine. And people get mad. But they can vote however they want and there is no legal means to stop them in most states.

PLEASE SIGN AND SHARE!

And since hell is obviously freezing over, it’s worth a shot.

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What’s Your Plan

I promise I’ll shut up.  Soon.

Today I spent the day calling strangers and asking them if they’d made a plan to vote.

You see, scientific studies say that folks are more likely to actually go and vote if they tell somebody what their plan to vote is.

  • Do you plan to vote in the morning?
  • The afternoon?
  • Evening?
  • How are you going to get there?

Bring your ID.

I figured there were no stranger strangers, so after all my posts on the election for all these months, I figured I’d bore you one last time:

Make a plan for when you’ll vote.  And go vote!

*****

My bloggin buddy, NTexas99 sent me this link.  It is to the pictures of women, born before the 19th Amendment was ratified, who waited all their lives to cast this vote.  It’ll make you smile.  And perhaps forgive me for all these political post.  Maybe.

http://www.iwaited96years.com/

 

 

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The Best Tool

Surprisingly, even here in polarized Northern Virginia where I live, there are still folks who haven’t made up their minds.

I’m doing all I can to help.  I’m making calls, I’ve donated money.  I fill out Donald Trumps surveys suggesting that he call Hillary “fat” and ask his followers why she isn’t home in the kitchen.

But the best tool I’ve found is this one:

i-voted

People are asking me who I voted for.  And they really want to know.  And I don’t hesitate to let them know why I voted for Hillary.

To the guys in the gas station and the convenience store, I emphasized Hillary’s commitment to raising the minimum wage and the fact that the billionaire has never done anything except cheat working people out of the money they earned.

To the folks in the medical lab, I referred to Hillary’s commitment to science, to healthcare for everybody.  Since they have such long working hours, I looked up where they too could vote early and encouraged them to do so.

To the affluent-looking folks in the grocery store, I emphasized the way the market react by falling through the floor whenever there is a hint that Trump is gaining.  “Do you want his finger on the nuclear button — we live at Ground Zero — DC (and Northern Virginia) lives under one big target …

Wear your sticker.  Talk it up.  Don’t pick fights.  Use humor however you can.

But everybody with an ounce of sense can help make sure that Wednesday is not the beginning of a long, terrible nightmare.

ELECTIONS MATTER

SO DOES YOUR VOICE

clinton-kaine-2016-blue-bumper-sticker

 

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Scarier than Any Ghost

What’s scarier than a slasher?  Things that go bump in the night?  A monster under the bed?

The possibility that these two will live in the White House.  At 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., NW, Washington, DC.

halloween

From my friend Father Kane at The Last of the Milleniums.

 

There is an answer, though.

hillary2

Google.  Oh and Hillary.

 

And this is pretty damn important too.

VOTE FOR  DEMOCRATS FOR THE HOUSE AND SENATE

Because they’re already planning to oppose anything she tries to do as President.

turn-america-blue

 

But since I love you all, I’ll give you a break.  You can watch this.

Happy Halloween!

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Call Me “Rigger” on Election Day

So you thought I was a more or less law abiding citizen, except for when I bribe French government officials.  In fact, reality is far worse.

Because on Election Day, November 8, 2016, I will be in an undisclosed polling booth, watching.  And I’ve even been trained for this nefarious activity.  In fact, I’m one of the folks Donald Trump is so concerned will “rig” the election.

It’s true.  A coordinated effort has been made by the Democratic Party.  You see, on Saturday, I went to a class where my fellow instigators and I learned what to do.  And “fixing” an election is as easy as taking candy from a baby.

What did we learn?

Well, you may have to cover your ears/eyes/heart.  Because it is evil unbridled.

  1. Study the Virginia voting regulations.   They include information on acceptable forms of ID, what to do if a voter’s name on ID doesn’t match the one on the roll (if a woman got married, for instance, or if there is a slight misspelling), or the voter has moved, etc.  The regs say what is legal and what is not.
  2. Arrive at undisclosed polling precinct obscenely early (5-f’ing:15).
  3. Bring baked goods.
  4. Observe the non-partisans set up the voting machines.
  5. Check that all voting machines register “0” prior to the doors opening to voters at 6.
  6. Share baked goods.
  7. Watch as they open the doors promptly at 6.
  8. Monitor that voters are not hindered from voting.
  9. Assist the election official (the “Chief”) in instances where the voter has a problem — incorrect ID, came to the wrong precinct, not registered, name or address doesn’t match the voter list.  We learned how to ensure that the Chief follows the regulations.  As legal folks, we understand how to read the regs.
  10. When appropriate, let the Chief and/or voter know what alternate IDs are valid.
  11. If necessary and there is no legitimate way for the voter to cast a regular vote, have him/her cast a provisional ballot.
  12. Make sure nobody who has cast an absentee ballot votes again.
  13. Monitor the length of the line, let Dem HQ know if there are problems.
  14. Ensure the voting machines are working.  Let Dem HQ know if there are problems.
  15. Enjoy baked goods, lunch, coffee and bathroom breaks when possible.
  16. Repeat.

Nefarious, no?  Downright wicked.  The evil continues all day until the polls close at 7 p.m.  Then comes the fun stuff.

  1. Make sure that anyone in line at closing time is allowed to vote.  That’s the rule.
  2. Ensure that the officials close and lock the door once everybody in line has voted.
  3. Verify that the number of voters who checked in = the number of votes cast (adjust for provisional ballots cast, naturally).
  4. Ensure that the Chief contacts the Secretary of State and reports the correct number of ballots cast for each candidate and the tally for any ballot initiatives voted on.  Presidential.  Congressional, local, ballot initiatives.
  5. Collect personal items.
  6. Go home.

Try to stay awake long enough to learn who won the election.

rigger-2

My badge from last time with my friend, Rigger.

I should tell you that when I did this in 2012, there was one incident. I’m sure you’ll agree it was obviously voter fraud.

An 86 year old woman came in to vote, but had already voted absentee.  She forgot she’d voted already.  She had trouble walking and had been dropped off at the voting station by her daughter.  “Oh, I guess you’re right,” she said when told she had voted already.  “I forget things sometimes.”  I called her daughter for her on my cell phone, and the woman and I chatted as she waited, eating baked goods.

*****

There are poll observers from both parties at many polling stations across the country.  It is one of the ways that our system ensures the integrity of the vote.  As a man I respect and admire said earlier today:

WASHINGTON — President Obama said Tuesday that Donald J. Trump should “stop whining and go try to make his case to get votes.”

Speaking at a Rose Garden news conference with Matteo Renzi, the Italian prime minister, Mr. Obama also called it “unprecedented” for any presidential candidate to “discredit the elections” before any votes were even cast, as Mr. Trump has done repeatedly in recent days.

“One of the great things about America’s democracy is we have a vigorous, sometimes bitter political contest, and when it’s done, historically, regardless of party, the person who loses the election congratulates the winner, reaffirms our democracy and we move forward,” Mr. Obama said.

Speaking of the tradition of a peaceful transfer of power after presidential elections, Mr. Obama said, “That’s how democracy survives.”

“I have never seen in my lifetime or in modern political history, any presidential candidate trying to discredit the elections and the election process before votes have even taken place,” Mr. Obama said. “It’s unprecedented. It happens to be based on no facts.”

Elections Matter. 

Vote on November 8

Make sure you know where to vote and have appropriate ID in states where ID is required.

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