Sunday, July 17, 2016

In a rational universe... - updated

... this would end a candidacy. What do you have to say now, Dr. Pangloss?

Update: This, too. Devastating.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Thank goodness - updated

Finally, somebody does a thoughtful, objective portrait of Hillary. Thank you, Ezra Klein.

Update: It pairs well with this salutary takedown of Bernie and the Berners. Liberalism -- vs. radicalism -- is not a dirty word. The energy of critique and the concomitant impulse to rip up the unweeded garden by the roots may be necessary for progress, but it is not sufficient for it.

Meanwhile, Tom Friedman gets it right, for a change. The G.O.P. is D.O.A.

Friday, July 8, 2016

This?

The person who wrote this utterly incoherent drivel was the editor of the Times Book Review?

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Still putzing along - updated

Is there no bottom to Sanders's egomania? Is he utterly deaf to his own delusional arrogance? He loses... badly... and then walks into the Democratic House caucus and lectures them about how elections don't matter? Don't matter when the alternative is Donald Trump? Don't matter in order to give Hillary a Congress she can work with?

Yes, they booed him, as they should have. They were being polite. The only other response would have been to laugh in his face.

Update: Well, finally. Let's hope he does it with useful energy.

Update 2: Okay, he did the right thing. Much is forgiven.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Caesar's wife - updated

By the standards implied in Comey's "extremely careless" characterization, few if any actual human beings -- and certainly not anyone in a position as fast-paced and complex as Secretary of State -- would pass muster. Twenty-two problemmatic emails out of more than 60,000? That comes to something like 99.9% pure. And some of those -- we don't know how many yet -- touched on things that everybody already knew about (like the drone program). Even in Caesar's wife terms, this is a nothingburger.

Bottom line: The uttering of the words "extremely careless" does some political damage, but given her opponent, not much. And there was no crime. Nothing close.

Update: Predictable bile from a long-time CDSer.

Update 2: So the "very small number" of emails actually marked classified was two, and those were erroneously marked. The others -- the famous 110 out of 30,000 -- contained things that the FBI believes "any reasonable person" should have known were classified, but were not marked as such. And how would one know in advance that that was the case -- without opening the email? And is it really the case that "any reasonable person" would regard them as top secret? We can't know until/unless we know what they were, and perhaps we never will.

Meanwhile, the key point is one that has been completely glossed over. Hillary was sharing information with people who were cleared to receive it, and vice-versa.

Update 3: Precisely. Can't wait to hear his testimony today, not in response to the GOP hacks, but to the Dems. One hopes some will grill him on "extremely careless," his egomanical abuse of power.

Update 4: Well, the Dems didn't hold Comey's feet to the fire. Too bad. But the story continues to move in the right direction.

Update 5: The always sensible Kevin Drum weighs in, sensibly.

Update 6: And, of course, the obsessive Dowd creature weighs in, obsessively. I knew Comey's use of "careless" would lead to her citing Tom and Daisy. Only she's no Nick. More like Underground Man.

Update 7: Media Matters and Norm Ornstein on the Dowd creature.

Saturday, July 2, 2016

Strange days

The Trump theater of anarchy isn't anything like a political campaign, but it does one thing very effectively -- it disrupts normal discourse, and in the process scrambles the brains of conventional theatergoers. While Hillary Clinton is being remarkably sure-footed in her response to it -- hitting him hard again and again, demonstrating her intelligence, knowledge and vision, marshaling the armies of the sane to fight on every front, and maintaining extraordinary composure and clarity amidst the chaos and misogyny -- many in the media are fumbling around in various forms of panic and confusion.

Case in point, this new editorial from the Times. First, consider the oddness of America's premier journalists devoting their lead space not to frame issues but to offer tactical advice to one of the contestants. And what advice! A mix of the trivial and the obtuse. Hillary isn't exciting enough. She needs to be more "passionate." She is practicing "old-style politics." Please. 

Yes, it's true -- Trump will not go down to the kind of total defeat that he so richly deserves. Even a landslide will net him 15 states or more, and somewhere around 40-50 million votes. The map will get redrawn quite a bit, but not completely. And yes, he is speaking to a real issue. Anti-globalization is a real issue, and this election will not settle it, as David Brooks notes in a rare cogent analysis

But that doesn't mean Hillary should abandon her strengths and start trying to compete on Trump's terms. All the fundamentals remain what they are. The Democrats start every presidential campaign on second base, and Trump has already balked them to third. And the correct response to anarchy is not to argue against it, but to refuse to acknowledge its legitimacy. The correct response to a rejection of governance is to govern.

That, I predict, is what Hillary's campaign will increasingly be. Her presidency has already begun. 

Friday, July 1, 2016