The Bob Dole Connection

Okay, so it’s come to light recently that Bob Dole was behind the Trump-Taiwan call. Yes, the same Bob Dole that ran for president and lost to Bill Clinton.  That same Bob Dole just guided Trump into torpedoing nearly 40 years of US-Chinese relations.  We must ask, why?

Now granted, Bob Dole is working for a law firm, which was reportedly paid $140,000 to make that call happen, and we all know the only difference between lawyers and prostitutes is, well, there are some things a prostitute will not do for money.  But…

I wonder if there’s more to it than that. Is Donald Trump actually Bob Dole’s ultimate payback to the Clinton’s and/or the American people for refusing him the presidency? Is Bob Dole an evil mastermind, slowly and quietly plotting his revenge since 1996?

Let’s look at the evidence. Fortunately we now live in a post-rational fact-free world, so manufacturing evidence is much easier than it used to be.

First, if you remember, Bob Dole had this weird tendency to always refer to him self in the third person, as in “You’re always going ‘Bob Dole does this’ and ‘Bob Dole does that.’ That’s simply not something Bob Dole does!”  (actual real quote) And we all know from movies and television that people who refer to themselves in the third person are mentally unstable, right?

And we all know that the whole Trump running for president thing started at the 2011 White House Correspondents Dinner, where Trump was publicly humiliated by Barack Obama.  Did Bob Dole invite Trump to that dinner?  I can’t prove that he did, but more importantly, I can’t prove that he didn’t either.

We also know that, unlike many Republicans, Bob Dole supported Trump early and often, stating that he was supporting Trump because he couldn’t vote for George Washington (another actual real quote).  Has Bob Dole been working quietly behind the scenes to help Trump win the nomination, and then the election itself.  I certainly can’t prove that he hasn’t, can you?

Also, is it just a mistake that the Dole/Kemp campaign website is still live?  No really, it’s still there, check it out: http://www.dolekemp96.org/main.htm  Why would he leave that up? Clearly he’s still bitter about losing.

Lastly, we all know the connection Bob Dole has to fruit, what with his stickers on bananas and pineapples all over the country.  Wouldn’t it be his ultimate revenge to defeat Hillary by getting an actual orange elected president?

The People Have Spoken

And while I’m not happy with their decision, it is theirs to make, and I will respect that. I know that for many, their reasons were upright and true. I honestly, truly, deeply hope they are right about their champion. I would very much like to be wrong about the damage that might be done. And I will be the first to admit it if that’s the case.

For right now, I’ve decided that I will remain calm, try very hard not to overreact, and wait and see what actually happens.  Attempting to respond to what our new President has said is simply overwhelming, and ultimately of no consequence. I will wait and see what he does, what he is allowed to do, that is what matters, and then I will respond as events unfold. And I will hope for the best.

It may be wishful thinking, but I am hoping there are still enough good people of principle in the Republican party to keep his worst ideas at bay, and that there are still enough good people of principle in the Democratic party to help push forward his best ideas forward. It will be a time for leaders, on both sides, to stand up, be counted, and do what is right for the country. I hope they are up to it. To that end, this is what I am expecting…

Republicans…

Let me speak to you for a moment. You now have the Presidency, control of the House, control of the Senate, and are soon to have a majority of Supreme Court justices.  In short, you have literally EVERYTHING YOU NEED to accomplish your goals. Everything! You have NO EXCUSES.

You say you can make America great? Do it! Make America great. Make America better than it is right now. Healthcare, jobs, unemployment, national debt, infrastructure, immigration, crime, guns, ISIS… Take your pick. Pick at least one of those, and make it better. Pick two if you can. You have full control. Keep your leader focused on the right things, and accomplish something meaningful for the American people. There is no excuse for failure. And we will be watching. And we will be keeping score. And we will hold you accountable. You have two years. If it goes well, we may even consider giving you full control for two more. Now GO!

Democrats…

Listen up Democrats. You have ONE job. Just one. Find someone who is less reprehensible than Hillary Clinton. That’s it. And that’s a really, really low bar, so it shouldn’t be all that hard. Find someone responsible, respectable, breathing, and if possible, who doesn’t use email. Someone who can step in should the Trump administration devolve into the shitstorm we all know it is capable of if left unsupervised. Seriously, have someone ready, no more screwing around. That is your ONLY job.  You have four years to make it happen. Ready? GO!

Independents, Third Partiers, and Non-Voters…

Pay attention. Seriously, just look up once in a while. Nobody is real sure what’s going to happen next, but whatever it is, we are going to need your voice. So just, you know, be aware of your surroundings a bit.

Hillary’s Locker Room Talk

(Photo by: Matt Rourke)

There’s been a lot said lately about Hillary Clinton viciously attacking her husband’s accusers. I admit, I never really followed that closely the soap opera that was the Clinton marriage. Now that it’s come to the forefront again, I thought, in the interest in fairness (I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but I’ve been kinda harsh on Trump lately), I really ought to take a close look at this. I have to say, what I found was indeed shocking. I was truly surprised at the viciousness of these attacks.  Let’s recap what I found.  Join me, won’t you?

Monica Lewinsky

Might as well start at the top.  The cigar-hiding intern who nearly brought down a presidency.  What Bill (allegedly) did:  He porked an intern. Certainly that raises some ethical questions, but to be fair, there is no indication that any of their, ahem, “interactions” were anything but consensual.  What Hillary (allegedly) did: In a private (let’s say “locker room”) conversation, she called Monica, and I quote, a “narcissistic loony toon”.

Wow!  I know.  Talk about the mouth of a sailor. I’m sorry you had to hear language like that, but I wanted you to get the full impact of it.  Certainly someone who talks like that has no business being president.

Paula Jones

Another big name on the Bill Clinton hit parade.  What Bill (allegedly) did: Exposed himself and propositioned her.  She turned him down.  Perhaps if he’d had a Tic-Tac first, or bought her some furniture, or maybe just grabbed her by the…  Well, we’ll never know.

Anywho, he was governor, she was a state employee, so she sued him for sexual harassment. Case was eventually dismissed before reaching trial. Paula’s legal team appealed. Bill settled, with the usual “no admission of guilt”.  Paula got $850,000, most of which went to her lawyers.

What Hillary (allegedly) did:  While there is no indication from anyone that Hillary did anything to attack Paula directly, according to Paula, Bill and/or Hillary “sent out people to dig up trash on me”.

It’s not clear whether this was before or after she appeared in Penthouse magazine (for the kids out there, that what we had for porn before the Internet), not that I’m judging.  I also have no idea what was eventually “dug up”, but it had to be just awful, vicious stuff about her.

Kathleen Willey

Speaking of Paula Jones, Kathleen Willey was asked to testify in the Paula Jones case.  What Bill (allegedly) did:  He grabbed her by the…. Well, let’s just say, he put a move on her we’ll call the “Trump Handshake”.  What Hillary (allegedly) did:  Nothing.

But, her writer buddy, Sid Blumenthal (the real one, not the one quoted by Russian propagandists), had lunch with Kathleen’s writer buddy, Christopher Hitchens, where Chris mentioned a recent “60 Minutes” piece on the situation, to which Sid replied “Well she may look good today,  she’s not going to look so good by Friday.”  Sounds super menacing, right?

Of course, to the casual observer this sounds like nothing more than an observation on how quickly tides turn in the media.  But we know better, don’t we. That was clearly a threat, straight from Hillary’s mouth. Well, not so much straight as by way of a guy named Sid, which is, of course, the most threatening way to deliver a threat. And we all know how threatening writers can be, what with that whole mighty pen sword fixation they have.

Gennifer Flowers

And the hit parade continues.  What Bill (allegedly) did:  Had a long term affair with her.  By all accounts this was a consensual relationship.  What Hillary (allegedly) did:  Possibly hired a private investigator.  Now that’s just a crazy, wacky, totally unhinged thing for a wife to do when she suspects her husband of cheating.  I mean honestly, who does that?

Also, she called Gennifer a “failed cabaret singer who doesn’t have much of a resume”.  Again, I must apologize for all this “locker room” talk.  I would never use such language, were it not a direct quote, but it’s important you hear her exact words. Certainly we should never accept such crude and offensive language from a candidate for the highest office in the land.

Juanita Broaddrick

I’ve saved the best for last.  This one is special, and for the first time, we see clear unmistakable signs of an actual attack by Hillary against one of Bill’s accusers.  I know, I know, I made you wait, but trust me, it’s worth it.

What Bill (allegedly) did:  He raped her.  Or not.  She did not report the attack to law enforcement, but she did report it to the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, and the New York Times. Skip ahead a few years, and she is called to testify in the Paul Jones case.

Now here’s where it gets weird. In a signed affidavit, under oath, she DENIES that Bill raped her. Later, when Kenneth Starr is investigating the Monica Lewinsky scandal, she denies the denial.  So, did he or didn’t he?  At this point, only Juanita knows for sure.

What Hillary (allegedly) did:  Threatened her in an attempt to keep her quiet.  Or not.  In a 1999 interview she was asked if Bill, or anyone near Bill, ever threatened her or intimidated her to keep her quiet.  Her answer?  “no”.

But, and here’s where it gets really interesting, if we rewind to 1978, just after the attack allegedly happened, but before she went to the newspapers, she tells the story of the night Hillary threatened her.

Hillary approached Juanita at a fundraiser and said, and I quote, “I just want you to know how much Bill and I appreciate the things you do for him. Do you understand? Everything you do.”

Woah! Right? Did you hear that? I know that to the casual observer, that sounds like the normal kind of thing a candidate’s wife might say to literally anyone at a fundraising event.  But you and I know, that’s some serious twisted “House of Cards” shit right there. Thanking her? For everything she did?  Damn, that’s cold blooded!

So, not only does Hillary let Juanita know that she knows what’s going on, but she does it in such a way that if she didn’t know what’s going on, this Juanita chick would look like she’s batshit paranoid. Only Juanita’s not batshit paranoid, she would only be paranoid if Hillary didn’t know.  But Hillary clearly knows, I mean why else would Hillary go so far out of the way to look like she didn’t know?  Clever, right?

And, and, in the same move, Hillary doesn’t just let her know she’s on to her, Hillary in the same sentence threatens her with… with… well with… Thanks? Appreciation? Wait. Okay, I’m not sure what she threatened her with, but she threatened her with something.  I mean, that’s clearly a threat. We all know Hillary threatened something, she had to, she’s Hillary after all. I mean, you see it too, right?

 

Why did the Arizona Republic switch sides after 120 years?

photo by The Arizona Republic

The Arizona Republic, founded in 1890, is the daily newspaper of Phoenix, and the largest newspaper in Arizona.

The Arizona Republic has never endorsed a Democrat for president.  Ever. They did NOT endorse JFK, Woodrow Wilson, or FDR. (They REALLY didn’t like FDR.) For 120 years, they have exclusively endorsed only Republican candidates for president.

In short, the Arizona Republic is a conservative paper in a conservative state.

This year, for a number of reasons, they are not endorsing Donald Trump.  I would like to invite you to take a close look at the carefully considered reasons for this break from their heritage…

On Temperament…

“The challenges the United States faces domestically and internationally demand a steady hand, a cool head and the ability to think carefully before acting. Hillary Clinton understands this. Donald Trump does not.”

“[Clinton] has withstood decades of scrutiny so intense it would wither most politicians. The vehemence of some of the anti-Clinton attacks strains credulity.Trump hasn’t even let the American people scrutinize his tax returns, which could help the nation judge his claims of business acumen.”

On Clinton’s Flaws…

“She has made serious missteps. Clinton’s use of a private email server while secretary of State was a mistake. … Donations to the Clinton Foundation while she was secretary of State raise concerns that donors were hoping to buy access.”

“Yet despite her flaws, Clinton is the superior choice. She does not casually say things that embolden our adversaries and frighten our allies. … Clinton retains her composure under pressure. She’s tough. She doesn’t back down.”

“Trump responds to criticism with the petulance of verbal spit wads. That’s beneath our national dignity.  When the president of the United States speaks, the world expects substance. Not a blistering tweet.”

On Foreign Policy…

“[Clinton] is intimately familiar with the challenges we face in our relations with Russia, China, the Middle East, North Korea and elsewhere. She’ll stand by our friends and she’s not afraid to confront our enemies.”

“Contrast Clinton’s tenacity and professionalism with Trump, who began his campaign with gross generalities about Mexico and Mexicans as criminals and rapists. These were careless slaps at a valued trading partner and Arizona’s neighbor. They were thoughtless insults about people whose labor and energy enrich our country.”

On Immigration…

“Arizona went down the hardline immigration road Trump travels. It led our state to SB 1070, the 2010 “show me your papers” law that earned Arizona international condemnation and did nothing to resolve real problems with undocumented immigration. Arizona understands that we don’t need a repeat of that divisive, unproductive fiasco on the national level. … We need a president who can broker solutions.”

On Human Rights…

“As secretary of state, Clinton made gender equality a priority for U.S. foreign policy. This is an extension of Clinton’s bold ‘women’s rights are human rights’ speech in 1995. It reflects an understanding that America’s commitment to human rights is a critically needed beacon in today’s troubled world.”

“Trump’s long history of objectifying women and his demeaning comments about women during the campaign are not just good-old-boy gaffes. They are evidence of deep character flaws. They are part of a pattern.”

“Trump mocked a reporter’s physical handicap. Picked a fight with a Gold Star family. Insulted POWs. Suggested a Latino judge can’t be fair because of his heritage. Proposed banning Muslim immigration. Each of those comments show a stunning lack of human decency, empathy and respect. Taken together they reveal a candidate who doesn’t grasp our national ideals.”

On Supreme Court Nominations…

“Many Republicans … shudder at the thought of Hillary Clinton naming Supreme Court justices. So they stick with Trump. We get that. But we ask them to see Trump for what he is — and what he is not. Trump’s conversion to conservatism is recent and unconvincing. There is no guarantee he will name solid conservatives to the Supreme Court.”

“Hillary Clinton has long been a centrist. Despite her tack left to woo Bernie Sanders supporters, Clinton retains her centrist roots. Her justices might not be in the mold of Antonin Scalia, but they will be accomplished individuals with the experience, education and intelligence to handle the job. They will be competent. Just as she is competent.”

On Trump’s Lack of Control

“Trump’s inability to control himself or be controlled by others represents a real threat to our national security. His recent efforts to stay on script are not reassuring. They are phony. The president commands our nuclear arsenal. Trump can’t command his own rhetoric.”

“Were he to become president, his casual remarks — such as saying he wouldn’t defend NATO partners from invasion — could have devastating consequences.” … Trump suggested Russia engage in espionage against Hillary Clinton — an outrageous statement that he later insisted was meant in jest. Trump said President Obama and Hillary Clinton were ‘co-founders’ of ISIS, then walked that back by saying it was sarcasm. It was reckless. Being the leader of the free world requires a sense of propriety that Trump lacks.”

On Trump’s Appeal…

“We understand that Trump’s candidacy tapped a deep discontent among those who feel left behind by a changed economy and shifting demographics. Their concerns deserve to be discussed with respect. Ironically, Trump hasn’t done that. He has merely pandered. Instead of offering solutions, he hangs scapegoats like piñatas and invites people to take a swing.”

“In a nation with an increasingly diverse population, Trump offers a recipe for permanent civil discord. In a global economy, he offers protectionism and a false promise to bring back jobs that no longer exist.”

“America needs to look ahead and build a new era of prosperity for the working class. This is Hillary Clinton’s opportunity. She can reach out to those who feel left behind. She can make it clear that America sees them and will address their concerns. She can move us beyond rancor and incivility.”

Conclusion

So for the first time, The Arizona Republic is endorsing a Democrat.  For all the reasons above, they are endorsing Hillary Clinton.  Those are just the highlights, you can read the entire endorsement here:

http://www.azcentral.com/story/opinion/editorial/2016/09/27/hillary-clinton-endorsement/91198668/

Let’s Talk About Who We’re Voting For…

I know, it’s taboo, but…this year is the year that breaks all the rules.  Any other year, if you asked, I might tell you who I liked or didn’t like.  Any other year I might just as likely tell you it’s none of your goddamn business.  And any other year I could not possibly care one whit who you were voting for.  But, this year is different, so let’s talk about it.

I have always been registered as an Independent. I strongly lean Republican on economic and defense issues, but could never abide their desire to restrict personal freedom on social and religious issues. As a result I tend to vote Republican more often than not.

At the presidential level, I have only once not voted Republican, and that was to vote 3rd party (a deeply disappointing experience). This year would have been no different, I was prepared to hold my nose and vote for any of the other 17 Republican candidates, except one. Yes, even Ted Cruz, as repugnant as I find him, as any of those 17 were preferable to Hillary Clinton. Except one.

Additionally, I have never before publicly advocated for or endorsed any candidate. I would make general comments about any candidate, or more often about specific issues, but I was never one to publicly support any particular candidate.  For any office.  This year would have been no different, had the Republican party nominated any of their 17 candidates, except one.

But, that didn’t happen. This year IS different. It is fundamentally different. This year it is NOT about politics. It is about principle. It is about who we are as a people. It is about the survival of the Republic as we know it. I may be powerless to prevent it, but I will not knowingly be a part of the destruction of our society. I cannot and will not remain quiet about this. I can only apologize in advance if you’re tired of hearing it.

This year I will very likely do the unthinkable. I will very likely vote for Hillary Clinton, and I will urge others to consider doing the same. For the survival of the Republic. For the survival of our principles. For the survival of the American ideal. For the survival of who we are. And yes, I am fully prepared to accept the consequences if she wins.

If you cannot bring yourself to do the same, know that I while I understand, I beg you, I implore you, at least consider Gary Johnson. He really is the better choice, and a strong third party showing would do wonders for our political system, if anything is to remain of it after this year. Who knows, by November, I may even convince myself to join you.

Our Choices So Far — part 2

Well, it’s nearly done. Unless there is an intervention by God Himself, or the Ghost of Reagan, it looks like Trump will be the Republican nominee. This means in about six months, one of the following will be elected as our new president:..

Option 1: Uncle Bernie. Bernie is like that crazy old uncle you see at holidays, he always saying the most ridiculous but lovable things. He’s so sweet and he means well, he just has no idea how anything really works. You just want to hug him. You really wish you could live in his world. And his ideas, they’re such nice thoughts, just so impractical. “They should give everybody free Twinkies on Tuesday. Twinkies for everybody, who’s with me. And puppies. Puppies for everybody. Nobody can be sad if they have a puppy.”

Option 2: The Wicked Witch of the West. That’s not really fair, there is a fundamental difference between Hillary and the Wicked Witch. The Wicked Witch of the West never gave a flying monkey what anyone else thought of her, and she certainly never changed her agenda to gain anyone’s approval. So… my apologies to Wicked Witch fans everywhere, she is clearly the more respected of the two.

Option 3: A giant talking oompa-loompa turd coated in a weird mixture of skin bronzer, dorito dust, and buffalo sauce, and possibly possessed by the ghost of Hitler.

Yeah. That’s it. Those is our choices. I think Sophie had an easier choice. (What, too soon?)

So, is anyone else out there beginning to wonder if maybe free Twinkies isn’t our least dangerous option?

Our Choices So Far

It is a long ways to November, and I’m not gonna make it unless I scale back a bit. So for now, at least until I can’t stand it any longer, this is all I have to say about the presidential race…

In no particular order…

Hillary Clinton – is an opportunist. She is untrustworthy. She has an open marriage with the truth. She will say or do anything if she thinks it will get her votes. She has no real character and no real direction. Her only goal for becoming president is to become president. No one knows what she would do if president, but we could always hack her mail server to find out. But… She is a better choice than Trump.

Ted Cruz – is a mean little obstructionist wing-nut. He has alienated everyone in Congress. Even other Republicans don’t like him. He is more concerned with winning a political point than doing what is right for America. Despite claiming to be a Constitutional scholar, he would completely dismantle the 1st Amendment given the opportunity. He is everything that is wrong with modern American politics. But… He is a better choice than Trump.

Marco Rubio – is an ineffective first term junior Senator, completely beholden to his party establishment, and who religiously clings to the party line, even when it makes him look like an idiot. In other words, he is basically the Republican version of a Barack Obama. He is inexperienced, he is a lightweight, and he is in way over his head. But… He is a better choice than Trump.

Bernie Sanders – is a democratic socialist in the European tradition. He will increase government spending. He will increase taxes. He is convinced you will be better off for it. I am not convinced. Though he means well, many of his plans are naive at best, catastrophic at worst. But… He is a better choice than Trump.

Donald Trump – is a giant gasbag full of hate, nonsense, buffoonery, and bacon grease. He wants to make America great again by getting rid of all the Mexicans and Muslims, much like a certain German politician wanted to restore the Fatherland by getting rid of the Blacks and the Jews. He laughs at the handicapped. He enjoys watching his minions beat up protesters. He doesn’t realize Mexicans have developed a new anti-wall technology called “tunnels”. He could be the villain in an Austin Powers movie, but he would have to tone it down a bit. He is a better choice than Re-animated Zombie Hitler, but not by much.

America – there are only four viable non-Trump choices left – as distasteful as it is, we have to pick one of these four idiots to be our next president. At this point, I don’t even care which one, just pick one of them. I will go along with whoever you like. We can try again in four years, with a different set of idiots. But seriously… literally any candidate but Trump.