Cheers and Jeers for Friday, November 8, 2019
Note: People who wear Crocs are holier than thou. Film at 11.
By the Numbers:
Days ’til Star Wars Episode IX: Boba Fett’s Midnight Burrito Strikes Back at 3am: 41
Days ’til the Wild Arts Festival in Portland, Oregon: 15
Percent of Hispanic voters who believe Trump has only served to encourage racism, according to a Noticias Telemundo/Mason-Dixon poll: 71%
Percent of Hispanic voters who support Trump’s impeachment and removal from office: 57%
Percent of Arkansas adults who approve of state legislation there allowing the ownership of machine guns, sawed-off shotguns, and silencers: 22%
Support among Iowa Democrats for Warren, Buttigieg, Sanders, and Biden, respectively, in the latest Quinnipiac poll: 20%, 19%, 17%, 15%
Puppy Pic of the Day: in Mexico, Edgardo Perros is “Saviour of the Dogs”
CHEERS to blue waves crashin’ on the shore of tyranny. As the 2019 elections slowly fade in the rear-view mirror and our thoughts turn to Thanksgiving turkey (I’ll take mine under-cooked in a dirty glass, bartender), we turn to Amanda Litman at Run For Something—the organization dedicated to helping ordinary progressives run extraordinary first-time state-level campaigns—for her thoughts (via email) on what went down Tuesday:
155 Run for Something-endorsed candidates were on ballots in 24 states. With 135 races called so far, we’ve had 72 wins and 4 candidates go on to run-offs. Quick facts about our winners so far
• Over 60 percent identify as women or non-binary
• Over 1-in-3 identify as people of color
• 18 percent identify as LGBTQ
“We all have to think, act, and donate with the big picture in mind,” said Litman. “State elections are a key aspect to maintain our democracy. No matter who wins the Democratic presidential primary, they can’t govern alone. They’ll need progressive partners at every level of government across all 50 states. That’s why next Tuesday, Nov. 12, we’ll be celebrating National Run for Office Day.”
And it probably wouldn’t hurt to zoom out and appreciate the even bigger picture for a moment: in the 2017 off-year elections Trump got shellacked. In the 2018 mid-term elections Trump got shellacked. In the 2019 off-year elections Trump got shellacked. And in the 2020 general election Trump got… well… [Lights pipe, leans back in rockin’ chair] …that’s a story for another day.
CHEERS to giving Hoover the boot. Speaking of winning governors, eighty-seven years ago today, on November 8, 1932, New York Governor Franklin Roosevelt was elected president. A few verbal goodies from FDR…
“A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs who, however, has never learned how to walk forward.”
“The only sure bulwark of continuing liberty is a government strong enough to protect the interests of the people, and a people strong enough and well enough informed to maintain its sovereign control over the government.”
“The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much it is whether we provide enough for those who have little.”
“When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.”
[Memo to self: check source on that last one. Might be Jackson?]
JEERS to sore losers. I’ve was waiting to hear from Kentucky Democrats regarding the threats by the Republican political machine there to try and use the legislature to overturn the will of the people and re-install the odious Matt Bevin in the governor’s chair for an undeserved second term, even though Andy Beshear won—in the upset of the year—by over 5,000 votes. I didn’t have to wait long:
“There is no way that the state Senate, an institution I love, is going to come in and overturn a vote of the people of the Commonwealth of Kentucky. That’s just not going to happen,” [Senate Minority Leader Morgan] McGarvey told HuffPost on Wednesday. “The people spoke last night, and they spoke clearly.” […]
McGarvey said that he had no problem with Bevin asking election officials for a recanvass. But, he added, “I don’t think are canvass has ever changed the result of an election.”
My prediction: I think Republicans do their little canvass dance and then lash Bevin to the rail he’ll be run out on in 32 days. Even the dumb ones know the value of not whacking a hornet’s nest with a stick.
CHEERS to the software revolution. On Sunday’s date in 1983, back when I was still banging out term papers on my REALLY LOUD Smith Corona electric typewriter, Microsoft introduced Version 1.0 of its Windows operating system. It wouldn’t actually be released until 1985, but the spark was…um…sparked. Here’s over-caffeinated former CEO Steve Ballmer selling Windows 1.0 (the last line is priceless):
To mark the occasion, tonight in the C&J cafeteria we’re dishing out our world-famous Fatal Error Casserole served at exactly 404 degrees.
CHEERS to Donald Trump: Mega-Philanthropist! Looks like I seriously misjudged the character of our 45th president. My god, he’s forking over two… MILLION… dollars to charities like Army Emergency Relief, the Children’s Aid Society, Meals-on-Wheels, Give an Hour, Martha’s Table, the United Negro College Fund, the United Way, and even the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum. What a swell guy he turned out to be! And by now you know where this is headed: he’s a petty gangster who used his charity as a slush fund, and…
A New York state judge ordered President Donald Trump to pay $2 million to a collection of nonprofit organizations in connection with a settlement with the New York state attorney general’s office to resolve a civil lawsuit alleging the foundation unlawfully coordinated with the 2016 Trump presidential campaign.
In her decision filed Thursday, Justice Saliann Scarpulla found that “Mr. Trump breached his fiduciary duty to the Foundation,” including by “allowing his campaign to orchestrate” a televised fundraiser ostensibly for the foundation in Des Moines, Iowa, in January 2016, and allowing the campaign to direct the distribution of the money raised from that event “to further Mr. Trump’s political campaign.”
Not that it was ever in doubt whether or not he would settle the case. In 2018 Trump tweeted: “I won’t settle this case!” Insert rimshot here.
CHEERS good readin’. On this date in 1731, Benjamin Franklin opened the first lending library—officially called “The Library Company of Philadelphia,” an idea that sprang from his weekly meetings with tradesmen designed to expand their depth of knowledge. (For our Republican readers: a library is a place where people go to learn facts and logic and wisdom from things called books and computers!) The dedication ceremony was cut short, however, thanks to strict enforcement of the colonies’ first ever “3 shushes and you’re out” rule.
CHEERS to home vegetation. Well, winter finally arrived in Maine this week, so we’ll be hunkered down with the warmth of the cathode ray tube this weekend. MSNBC’s Chris Hayes and Rachel Maddow will analyze whatever Friday news dumps there are, for starters. Then on HBO’s Real Time, Bill Maher talks with Judge Judy (yes, Judge Judy), Gov.Steve Bullock (D-MT), Rahm Emanuel, Steve Schmidt and Judd Apatow. New home video releases include the 437th entry in the Fast & Furious franchise and the Guillermo del Toro-produced Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark. The NBA schedule is here, the NHL schedule is here, and the NFL schedule is here. On 60 Minutes: the dangers of being a news reporter in the Philippines under the Duterte regime. Marge becomes a Lumberjill on The Simpsons and the Griffins lose their wi-fi on Family Guy. And John Oliver wraps up the week with a spot of tea and a new edition of Last Week Tonight.
Now here’s your Sunday morning lineup:
Meet the Press: TBA
Face the Nation: Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA); America’s evil grandpappy Sen. John Kennedy (R-LA); National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien.
CNN’s State of the Union: Sens. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Ron Johnson (R-WI); Rep. Max Rose (D-NY).
This Week: Intelligence Committee member Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA); House Armed Services Committee member Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-TX); Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley.
Fox GOP Talking Points Sunday: House Intelligence Committee members Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY) and Will Hurd (R-TX).
Ten years ago in C&J: November 8, 2009
JEERS to a really bad rabble. Wow, teabaggers, you really sucked yesterday. A billionaire buses you all in to D.C. and this is how you repay the benevolent Mr. Koch??? Oh, sure, you had your Marxist slogans and obscene holocaust signs and that honest-to-goodness week-without-bathing teabagger smell. (Mmmm…ripe!) But, good gracious, you forgot the words to the Pledge of Allegiance, desecrated the American flag by letting it fall to the ground, and confused the Constitution with the Declaration of Independence??? And then you had the gall to accept socialist health care right in front of your host Michele Bachmann??? Jesus…Glenn Beck goes into the hospital and you guys fall apart. Tsk Tsk.
And just one more…
CHEERS to knockin’ that sucker down. Thirty years ago today, the world witnessed a surreal scene that must’ve especially driven Donald Trump’s one and only dendrite to short-circuit: Berliners hacking away with pickaxes and hammers at that damned wall that had divided their city for decades—a mind-blowing moment that briefly galvanized the planet in celebration. And what sparked it wasn’t the pope or the U.N. or even ex-president Saint Ronald Reagan—it was this awkwardly-delivered comment by Politburo member Guenter Schabowski a day earlier:
“Therefore…um…we have decided today…um…to implement a regulation that allows every citizen of the German Democratic Republic…um…to…um…leave East Germany through any of the border crossings,” said Schabowski.
He appeared scarcely to believe his own words and we were all dumbfounded. What did he just say? Schabowski was asked when the new rule would take effect. “That comes into effect…according to my information…. immediately, without delay,” Schabowski stammered, shuffling through the papers spread in front of him as he sought in vain for more information.
I still link to this must-see Boston Globe photo diary, which documents the jubilation and its aftermath. I had the chance to visit Berlin a couple times in the mid-70s when I was kid. I had a middle-school knowledge of the post-war history of Berlin, but nothing could prepare me for the contrast I saw in person: vibrant and colorful on the western side…oppressive, gray, boarded-up and barbed-wired on the eastern side. In some ways it reminds me of what this country has become: reality-based, education-oriented and live-and-let-live on the left…authoritarian, trigger-happy, reality-averse and homogenous on the right. But my main point is: Happy reunification anniversary, Germany—let’s all drink beer.
Have a great weekend. Floor’s open…What are you cheering and jeering about today?