We Haven’t Forgotten About You Chris Christie

Saw you trying to sneak away while everyone was paying attention to the debate.

David Wildstein, who pleaded guilty to federal crimes associated with the Bridgegate scandal and turned government informant, testified he and Bill Baroni, Christie’s top appointee at the Port Authority, boasted to the governor about the traffic jams when they saw him in person at a Sept. 11 memorial event in 2013.

“Mr. Baroni said, ‘Governor I have to talk to you about something,'” Wildstein recalled.

“(He said) there’s a tremendous amount of traffic in Fort Lee this morning. Major traffic jams. You’ll be pleased to know Mayor (Mark) Sokolich is very frustrated,” Wildstein said.

You been bit!!

Who’s On The Ballot

From Jen Sorensen.

whos-on-the-ballot915

But yeah go ahead and vote for Jill Stein, she’s awesome.  That proves you’re a real progressive.

From last night:

HILLARY CLINTON

I happen to support that in a way that will actually work to our benefit. But when I look at what you have proposed, you have what is called now the Trump loophole because it would so advantage you and the business you do. You’ve proposed

DONALD TRUMP

Who gave it that name?

LESTER HOLT

Sir, this is Secretary Clinton’s two minutes.

HILLARY CLINTON

…tax benefit for your bit family. And when you look at what you are proposing it is, as I said, Trumped up, trickle-down. Trickle down it did not work. It got us into the mess we were in 2008-2009. Slashing taxes on the wealthy hasn’t worked and a lot of really smart, wealthy people know that. And they are saying, hey we need to do more to make the contributions we should be making to rebuild the middle class. I don’t think top-down works in America. I think building the middle-class, investing in the middle class, making college debt-free so more young people can get their education, helping people refinance their debt from college at a lower rate, those are the kinds of things that will really boost the economy, broad-based, inclusive growth.

Just for the record, Bernie couldn’t have said that any better.  Maybe he could have said it in a more rumpled, less red suit, but not any better.

 

Well, That Went EXACTLY As I Expected

There’s reems and reems of post-debate commentary so I’ll just add a couple of cents rather than regurgitate what anybody can find anywhere.

These debates are about vetting the candidates and some of it is has become silly on its face, but essential.  It’s about preparation, study, learning the lessons of past debate successes and failures as well as actually knowing policy and facts. History shows candidates get tripped up on various things, a lack  of knowledge or inability to be articulate, misstatements that show lack of mastery of facts and the physical and temperamental failings of looking bored or dismissive when you’re not talking.  You’re always on camera and body language counts as much as rhetoric.

What Donald Trump showed, again, is that he disdains preparation. He doesn’t care about the lessons of the past because he’s above them. Whether it’s misstating facts and then stupidly trying to fact check the fact check (he did that at the Commander-in-Chief forum too and failed), lying about well debunked facts, or slumping, sniffing, grimacing and interrupting.  If Hillary had done any of that she would have been destroyed.  He did it all, proving that he believes he’s above it all!  He’s above paying taxes, above truth, above learning!

Trump hardly ever answered a question, certainly not directly. Even the yes or no questions like “would you support the winner” he’d go on for paragraphs and then only at end did he say “yes.”  How would you create jobs?    No answer.  We’re losing jobs, losing them badly, bad trade deals.  He’d rip them up.  Not an answer.  You can’t just rip up trade deals and treaties.  What specifically would you do on anything?  No specifics, ever.  Just generalities and often counterfactual ones at that.  Ford is not taking jobs to Mexico, Michigan is not bleeding jobs, the Chinese are no longer devaluing their currency, they’re propping it up, etc.

He was nonsensical often when he was trying to be serious:  Tearing up trade deals, making other countries pay for their defense (like some Mafia protection racket), his father gave him a small loan of $14 million bucks!  You don’t learn anything from tax returns.  Clinton should have fixed everything for 30 years, but she didn’t, she’s responsible for everything wrong. He even claimed his web site would also be fact checking when it wasn’t and that Hillary was fighting Isis her whole adult life (um, what?).

And then other times his comments were just bizarre and unfocused when he was vamping.  Mentioning 400 pound hackers, his son’s amazing ability on computers, Rosie O’Donnell deserved to be called names, another attack on a judge, calling out her stamina when she ran rings around him looked and much fresher than he did.

If this was a boxing match he landed a few, but she knocked him down several times and he swung so wildly that he punched himself often.  To an extent she rope-a-doped him and could have done more.  He proved that he’ll take the bait every time on his record as a businessman, his taxes, his comments on women, birtherism, etc.

A great deal to build upon for the next debate.

It’s ALL About the Supreme Court

ALL!  Jeffrey Toobin points out that there has not been a liberal majority in the Court since the Nixon Administration!  Nixon!!  We have a shot now.  You can’t pass those shots up.

The membership of the Court now reflects the partisan divisions in the rest of the country, where crossover voting rarely takes place anymore. There are only four Republican appointees on the Court: Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr. (nominated by George W. Bush), Kennedy (Ronald Reagan), Clarence Thomas (George H. W. Bush), and Samuel Alito (George W. Bush). They are matched by four Democratic appointees: Ginsburg (Bill Clinton), Breyer (Clinton), Sonia Sotomayor (Barack Obama), and Elena Kagan (Obama). “There has not been a definitively liberal majority on the Supreme Court since Nixon was President,” Noah Feldman, a professor at Harvard Law School, said. “Ever since then, liberals have sometimes managed to cobble together majorities to avoid losing—on issues like affirmative action and abortion—but the energy and the initiative have been on the conservative side. That stopped, at least for now, this year.”

The short-sighted must be reminded – everything they want in regards to getting money out of politics, gerrymandering, public financing of elections, climate change (regulating pollutants), abortion rights, voting rights, labor organizing, affirmative action,  etc. etc. etc. it all depends on the Supreme Court.  Elected officials come and go, all temporary.  But the Court goes on playing a long game.  Conservatives have played this game, understanding that politics is full of pendulum swings, but if you have the courts, you are impervious to the most drastic changes when it all swings left. The left just seemed to have figured this out recently.

 

 

Kevin Drum Reminds Us About Post-Debate Spin

People who watched the first Bush-Gore debate thought Gore won, but over the next few weeks media went after Gore’s performance and by the time the election came around perceptions had completely reversed.  Anybody who lived through 2000 knows how true it was that while Karl Rove made Bush passably presidential enough, it was the media who denigrated Gore enough that an election that should have gone one way, went the other (thanks Florida!!)

Among people who actually watched the debate, Gore seemed fine. He knew his stuff, he attacked without seeming mean, and no one seemed to notice any sighing. But then the analysts put together a mix tape of every one of Gore’s sighs, and it was game over. Gore was a laughingstock.

It sure made sighing a debate no-no. Lord we are a stupid people!

This is Why I Quit Hollywood

Paramount took a $115 million dollar write off owing to the film “Monster Trucks.”  Don’t try to remember if you saw it with your kids, you didn’t.  It hasn’t been released.  It was originally supposed to be released summer (natch) of 2015 and it’s been worked and re-worked since then.

This kind of thing is not that unusual, (news flash: studios make a lot of dreck) but in this case the price tag and the provenance of the film make it a very painful brain fart for Paramount.  The concept was created by a one-time studio president with the input of his 4-year old son.

The idea for the film—what if monster trucks had real, live monsters in them? Burping monsters?—was developed by one-time studio president Adam Goodman with the help of his then-4-year-old son, who is now the undisputed world champion of economic collapse, preschool division. The studio was seeking properties that could sell toys and become franchises, and it seems that the inexplicable success of Paramount’s Transformers films, combined with development work from a gifted 4-year-old, sent the company off the rails. When the trailer came out this summer—after picking our jaws off the floor—we tracked the HR carnage the project has already left in its wake: Goodman has left Paramount, as has Bob Bacon, the one-time head of Paramount Animation, the division behind Monster Trucks.

This is how shit gets done in Hollywood.  Literally, how SHIT gets made.  This Onion interview with a the 5 year old screenwriter of “Fast Five” is not even an exaggeration anymore.