Monday, November 26, 2018

When Coups Fail...

normally, in other barbarous lands, people are stood up against a wall and shot.  Not here in the USA though, look at U.S. Representative Seth Moulton, his bid to unseat presumed House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has seemingly failed ignominiously, and all he does is try to open some fruitless negotiations with the leadership while looking around for his next big political adventure.
This is hardly "Operation Valkyrie" mah frenz.
Well all I can say is that Seth Mouton's motto seems to be: "Only by Challenge, Shall I Rise", it is by challenge he unseated Tierney, it was by challenge he tried to overthrow Pelosi and whatever happens next it'll likely be a primary challenge here in the Commonwealth.
The question is, does he want to wait four years and take a flyer in the gubernatorial primary (assuming Charlie Baker is not on the ballot)?
Or Maybe he wants to run for President in 2020, that could be murky going since there are literally three other Massachusetts based candidates in play, I am assuming that like most politicians Moulton likes to avoid crowds, if he can.
Lastly and most dangerously he might bid on a primary challenge to Ed Markey in 2020, and this is where the nightmare scenario kicks in because Moulton might rough Ed up enough to make the Junior Senator easy pickings for a candidate like Charlie Baker (whose huge numbers two weeks ago might tempt him into a race where he can guarantee the advantage of incumbency to "Acting Governor Polito").  Either that, or Moulton displaces Markey for the senatorial nomination and thus ends up running against a tanned re$ted & ready Charlie Baker...a match up Moulton himself pointedly declined this year.
Seth, all I'm saying is, think about it, you could end up prolonging Charlie Baker's already morbidly repetitive political career....

Sunday, November 25, 2018

John Kasich (remember him??)

is making forlorn noises about "challenging Trump" in 2020.  In his own way, he is just as deluded as the President, Kasich really thinks there is a Anti-Trump constituency within the GOP that can be activated during the presidential primaries.
I don't see it at all, pretty much the entire GOP has made a very bad Faustian Bargain with Donald Trump and only perhaps a truly botched international crisis or another recession will break it, and I doubt even then....
Its difficult to flank Trump on the right, because he's done such a good job of co-opting extremists, the argument has to be made on constitutional principles and our international commitments, none too popular planks come the South Carolina Primary.
I doubt Kasich will do it, for lack of courage, I strongly suspect he cannot raise the money and most of all, he is the sort of prissy politician that Trump eats for breakfast. In other words the President is good at beating up lame weaklings, and that is John Kasich in a nutshell.

No, reluctantly I am forced to the conclusion that only a serious well funded third party bid can deny Trump the votes and thwart him in the General Election. From the GOP, we can expect nothing.  Said 3rd Party Challenge will require a lot of money and credible persuasive candidate, perhaps someone can leverage the Libertarians since they already on the ballot, but that will also require a certain amount of the point of making de facto common cause with the democrats. I doubt there are any credible candidates out there, willing to assume this amount of risk in a deliberately doomed campaign.
As at the moment the only Libertarian making Presidential noises is, Bill Weld, God Help Us.

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

W'all Ah Swan...

reading Joan Vennochi's column in today's Globe is a wonder indeed, apparently she is on both Seth Moulton and Nancy Pelosi's side in their coming struggle for the speakership of the US House.  Somehow the argument goes that having finally battled thru to a strong majority, Nancy Pelosi must now slay two more dragons before claiming her title...and that somehow is good for the democratic party.
Division is never good at a time like this, especially when the opposition is more or else united and dominated by an ambitious authoritarian spirit.
What the hell does a woman, especially an older woman, have to do to claim power in this meshugginah country??  Never has success been punished so relentlessly, but then again this is the USA old and female is always a target in the private sector, I've seen it happen a dozen times.
Frankly I think Moulton is out of line here, he has seemingly nationalized his perpetual fight against party insiders and various unelected elites.  Fine Seth, I get it, you primaried Tierney you beat the odds you think you don't own anyone, anything.  Thats not a license to make a transparent and cringeworthy bid to overturn the US House Leadership via ageism and sexism...cuz thats what is in play here.  I think congressperson Moulton was hoping that the democrats would lose the House this year and thus clear the way for his coup, now however he faces an opponent with resources to redistribute and the wind at her back.
I hope it's enough...

Saturday, November 17, 2018

This is just too good to be true....

Donald Trump is supposedly questioning the loyalty of his sycophantic toadying VP, Mike Pence, per the New York Times of Course.
This is just hilarious to contemplate on a number of levels, as well as being proof positive that Trump himself regards the recent midterms as a setback for him and the GOP he has completely suborned.
Just remember when Trump's back is to the wall, he lashes out at anyone anywhere as long as they are incapable of retaliation, and that is the very definition of the U.S. Vice Presidency.
If someone was ruthless, cunning & subtle, they'd stoke Trump's suspicions of Mike Pence and perhaps ignite one of his cringeworthy twitter tirades akin to the ones he unleashed that other canine-like Trump loyalist, Jeff Sessions.
Who knows? Maybe Pence can be intimidated into resigning...if the timing on that is just right, that puts Nancy Pelosi's House of Representatives directly astride the confirmation process.  Assuming of course Pelosi is the next Speaker of the House...and if she is, the House can easily withhold confirmation of the VP nominee and make a female democrat Trump's lawful successor for the rest of his term.
Sure its a crazy scenario, but we are living with a far crazier and more dangerous scenario every certainly can't divide the nation any more than it is fractured at the moment, don't kid yourself.

Friday, November 16, 2018

Lumpy & Nothingness

The Boston Globe is predictably excited as the Governor has all but promised that his second term in office will basically be "more of the same".
What this means is, that the Globe will continue to give CPR to the bleached skeletal remains of "moderate republicanism", while Lumpy watches, quietly.
So if it is indeed, "more of the same", we can look forward to an MBTA that is still hobbling on crutches, while the buildings continue to degrade,  and the State Police's leadership continue to get indicted one by one fired not one word from the Corner Office.
And trust me, Baker hasn't given up on his one true utopian notion, to privatize the public schools, make everyone pay more even as he touts tax cuts as the veritable cure for cancer.
This is what happens when you set the bar low for a republican they exploit it, and right now the bar is set so low for Lumpy a crippled ant could leap over it...

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Notes from an UnNationalist...

""By ‘patriotism’ I mean devotion to a particular place and a particular way of life, which one believes to be the best in the world but has no wish to force on other people...Nationalism, on the other hand, is inseparable from the desire for power. The abiding purpose of every nationalist is to secure more power and more prestige, not for himself but for the nation or other unit in which he has chosen to sink his own individuality." 

George Orwell

A few weeks and many many stupid statements ago, The President of the USA explicitly decloseted himself as a "nationalist" in front of one of his adoring rally crowds.  And today at the Centennial for the World War One Armistice, French President Macron very bravely denounced nationalism as the author of all Europe's travails.
y'know...he is right.
It was Germany's thirst to dominate Europe and push the Slavs behind the Ural Mountains that brought World War One down on us all.  All ignited by the nationalist notion that Germany was being "denied" something or else was menaced by semi-barbarous hordes.  The irony is, that only thing that "nationalist exercise"definitely accomplished was helping the Bolsheviks take over All The Russias.
Twenty years later it was the ultra-nationalist Adolf Hitler's turn to wage a war of extermination right to the gates of Moscow, only to have the Russians wage likewise and same all the way to the banks to the Elbe River.  One spasm of nationalism gave Russian to Marxism Leninism, the Second brought Communism at the point of a bayonet from "Stettin on the Baltic, to Triest on the Adriatic" in the neat phrase of Winston Churchill.
My point being, that Euro-Nationalism only ends up "Holding the Bridle" for some other equally bad Political Cult...the last time it was Marxism...this time, I can't say, with our luck Putin's Brand of degraded Ayn Randism maybe.

Friday, November 09, 2018

BTW Kudos to Representative Nancy Pelosi

she plotted the democrats comeback in the US House with consummate brilliance, she raised the funds, recruited the candidates, chose the battlegrounds and for the most part stayed off television for the last three weeks before the midterm.
She scotched Bush's plan to privatize social security, she got the ACA thru, she has been speaker, she has been back benched, the lady has experience, and on Tuesday Night after fifteen years, it paid off.
She managed to connect the dots all the way to victory in a degraded representative body that is riddled with the cancer of rotten boroughs, this is a significant achievement in these imperiled times.
There is a movement afoot (headed by our own Seth Moulton sad to say) to put aside Pelosi's leadership and elect someone else speaker next January.  This would be a terrible injustice, the fruits of Pelosi's victory should not be handed to someone else, she put the time in she deserves the sinecure.
Some say Trump has "figured her out" and will do nothing save heap scorn on Speaker Pelosi for the rest of his term. Well what of it? Scorn never killed anyone, and the GOP spent millions on adverts excoriating Nancy Pelosi, none of which stopped her or the democrats from flipping the US House..."bring on the hate" sez Humble Elias.
Moreover I think Pelosi has Trump "figured out" from his weakness for praise, his preference for untrustworthy chiselers for aides and authoritarian "talk" matched with an unsteady "walk".
Besides there is something about having Nancy Pelosi a mere two heartbeats away from the US Presidency that'll send Movement Conservatism into conniptions...and I am a connoisseur of conniptions mah frenz.

Wednesday, November 07, 2018

As for the Midterms (which I'll ruminate upon in detail in due course)

"I didn't get all that I wanted, but I got enough to work with...."

If I had to speculate...

and what "sarcastic rant driven blowhard" doesn't like to do that?  I'd say that Maura Healey thinks her path to The Corner Office is thru a "Girl Fight Tonight" scenario in 2022 wherein it's the AG versus The Lt Governor, Karyn Polito.
If Healey can get a match up like that, ergo two women on the general election ballot, she can effectively negate the dreaded "girl factor" which posits that a certain increment of voters simply won't vote for a woman for high office and will cast ballots for the male opponent on that basis.
Well, Elizabeth Warren dealt "the girl factor" a very satisfying body blow back in 2012, but it made a robust comeback in 2014 in the Coakley/Baker matchup, so its very much a potential issue in any notional gubernatorial race.
Of course, if it was left up to me, I'd try and talk the AG out of the race entirely, the problem with her particular constitutional office is, no matter how well she executes her duties, its still a job that makes enemies.  If Maura Healey is doing the job right (and it seems like she is) then she is just creating her own personal aggrieved faction that'll happily knife her in the back come October 2022.  On the other hand, Baker's original majority in 2014, was a bare 40,000 votes in a open race, Healey may believe she can close a narrow gap like that in a sufficiently tight race that has no easy gender divide.
Because Believe Me, Maura Healey IS running for Governor, her signs were utterly ubiquitous in Menotomy yesterday, she is clearly assembling a volunteer infrastructure all over the Commonwealth and her seventy percent majority last night may well have topped the entire democratic ticket statewide.
The only other thing that conditions a Healey candidacy for Governor is Charlie "Lumpy" Baker's future plans.  I've long suspected he'd love to run for the US Senate, or he has supporters that'd love to tempt him into such a race. Lumpy's nearest opportunity is running against Ed Markey in 2020, which is smack-dap astride Baker's second term, something that might trigger the Governor's famous anxiety and caution.  Meanwhile Joan Vennochi (remember her???) is conjuring with a "Baker for President in 2020" meme, something I'd discount, Lumpy doesn't have the guts to directly Donald Trump either in the NH Primary or on an Independent ticket.
I'd go deeper into the mechanics of Warren running for President and somehow winning thus opening up another special US senate election and giving Lumpy the opportunity to appoint an interim Senator...but then this was a posting about Maura Healey's ambition...:)

Tuesday, November 06, 2018

"We Only Lose When We Quit"

Whatever happens tonight and in the days to come, win or lose, remember giving up or getting out, is mere self destruction. "If we are pushed out of the valley, we will fight in the hills". (Okay thats a quote from "Zapata" starring Marlon Brando, but its apt all the same)

Stay Strong, Do Your Duty, remember Churchill's Admonition:

“In War: Resolution,
In Defeat: Defiance,
In Victory: Magnanimity
In Peace: Good Will.”

Monday, November 05, 2018

For the US Senate Tomorrow...

I heartily endorse Elizabeth Warren in tomorrow's contested election for the U.S. Senate. I do so, because she has been more effective than is presented in her publicity, and because Geoff Diehl would be a disaster for the Commonwealth as a US Senator, less a solon, more of a Trump sycophant to put it neatly.
There is word on the street that Warren badly wants to run for President, all the auspices point to a run sad to say, despite Humble Elias' bid to talk her off the ledge.  Nonetheless, if I was willing to take the same risk with Kerry, Dukakis, Tsongas and Kennedy, then I ought to extend the same courtesy to Warren with my vote tomorrow.
But then Massachusetts is a hotbed of ambition, Katherine Clark wants to be Senator, Maura Healey wants to be Governor, the pot is ever boiling.

I also urge a YES vote on Question Three, by voting yes on said ballot measure we collectively affirm our confidence in our state's current transgender rights & protections, in the current national political zeitgeist this is a desperately needed affirmation indeed.

Whatever the outcome tomorrow, do not despair, do not fear, if we are defeated here, we will simply fight elsewhere. It is not necessary to win, it is important to keep fighting no matter what.  We lose only when we quit.

Sunday, November 04, 2018

Jay Gonzalez in Menotomy Part II...

I gotta say, Jay Gonzalez remains energetic, and is seemingly resolved to "go down swinging" come what may...

The candidate made a rousing campaign appearance at the Sons of Italy in (Romantic) Arlington flanked by Congressperson Katherine Clark and the Commonwealth's AG Maura it was a peppery trio up at the podium to be sure.

And just on a side note, I will say congressperson Clark fairly exudes the heady perfume of senatorial ambition, at the moment our representation seems set in the US Senate but I'm not sure she'd hesitate for more than twelve hours if an opportunity presented itself.
For that fact, you can tell Maura Healey is just waiting out Charlie Baker to make her run for Governor, she has already worked up a good liberal populist pitch that she tried out Friday Night.
And yet, I could eat beans off her head, I can't believe she once played pro basketball, I got sacks of potatoes bigger than Maura Healey.
Health to all their endeavors, sez Humble Elias.
I'll go to my grave insisting Jay Gonzalez is the better man for the job of Governor of the Commonwealth. Lumpy touts a record of shallow "successes" and ducks almost all the bigger issues menacing our prosperity & liberties, Gonzalez at least understands there is a matrix out there of dire challenges, the quicker we address them the better our prospects will be in the years to come.

And besides, this republic is on a collision course with a Constitutional Crisis. It is likely unavoidable at this point, among the many things we will need when the final extremity is reached, is State Governors who love our rights and liberties more than they love their careers and their lives.

That ain't Charlie "Lumpy" Baker, believe me. The best we can hope for out of that guy in his second term is more chiseling on behalf of the charter school placebo at the expense of our Public Schools.
In all, a disheartening prospect.

So its with great fanfare that I wholeheartedly endorse the ticket of Jay Gonzalez and Quentin Palfrey for Governor and Lt Governor on Tuesday, I will be working hard for both of them on that day.

Friday, November 02, 2018

Yesterday, The Boston Globe had the temerity to anoint

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker as an "Anti-Trump Republican".

All I can say is with "GOP Opponents" like Lumpy arrayed against him, Trump can look forward to a   Despotism  that'll make Gaius Caligula look like a peevish Scoutmaster.

But then I'm not sure there is really any effective opposition to Trump within the GOP, certainly in the last two years what have they prevented The President from saying or doing?
Exactly nothing,  the GOP "opposition" is largely muted and of a purely rhetorical nature. Moreover said "opposition" is conditioned and corrupted by the need to negotiate with Trump with respect to items like judicial nominations (exp "Kavanaugh") and the only thing the republicans universally worship like pagan cuts.
Onto this battlefield, steps Charlie "Lumpy" Baker, unarmed and unwilling...he rebukes the president, in soft tones but if Trump ever bids on tearing up the US Constitution and ruling with an Iron Hand Our Governor will be the first to run like a rat in a firestorm.
Count On It.