Thursday, November 6, 2014

Last Call For SCOTUS-Bound

In arguably the least surprising move ever, the 6th Circuit has now forced a Supreme Court ruling on same-sex marriage by reversing lower court rulings and finding same-sex marriage bans to be constitutional.  In fact, forcing a Supreme Court ruling is the entire basis of the ruling:

This case ultimately presents two ways to think about change. One is whether the Supreme Court will constitutionalize a new definition of marriage to meet new policy views about the issue. The other is whether the Court will begin to undertake a different form of change—change in the way we as a country optimize the handling of efforts to address requests for new civil liberties.

If the Court takes the first approach, it may resolve the issue for good and give the  plaintiffs and many others relief. But we will never know what might have been. If the Court takes the second approach, is it not possible that the traditional arbiters of change—the people— will meet today’s challenge admirably and settle the issue in a productive way? In just eleven years, nineteen States and a conspicuous District, accounting for nearly forty-five percent of the  population, have exercised their sovereign powers to expand a definition of marriage that until recently was universally followed going back to the earliest days of human history. That is a difficult timeline to criticize as unworthy of further debate and voting. When the courts do not let the people resolve new social issues like this one, they perpetuate the idea that the heroes in these change events are judges and lawyers. Better in this instance, we think, to allow change through the customary political processes, in which the people, gay and straight alike, become the heroes of their own stories by meeting each other not as adversaries in a court system but as fellow citizens seeking to resolve a new social issue in a fair-minded way.

For these reasons, we reverse.

I said last month that a circuit court ruling against same-sex marriage would force SCOTUS to act.  If they don't however, Ohio, Michigan, Kentucky and Tennessee will continue to be ruled by bigotry and hatred.  We'll see how it shakes out, but right now that circuit split means that most likey this is headed for SCOTUS after all.

Post-Racial America Update, Election Edition

Remember America that racism is over, it's why we no longer need affirmative action, the Voting Rights Act, or the Civil Rights Act.  That was demonstrated today on C-SPAN.

The caller, who gave his name as Anthony from San Diego, California, identified himself as a Republican and started out talking about the direction he thinks the new GOP majority in Congress should take.

"I would just like to say, that the Republicans -- and I'm a Republican -- please do not overreach," the caller began. "I know they're going to overreach but I'm telling you, if you advocate for the repeal of Obamacare and you get too extreme, then Hillary Clinton will be elected President in 2016."

"This is about race," he added. "The Republicans hate that nigger Obama."

Host Steve Scully quickly cut off the caller after he dropped the racial slur.

"Okay, I'm gonna stop you there," Scully said. "We're not gonna use that kind of language."

"You can certainly make your point, but you cross the line when you use language like that," he added. "And so to our viewers and listeners, I want to apologize."

Oh, "Anthony from San Diego" made his point perfectly.  If you're wondering how America can vote against a president who lowered unemployment from 10% to 5.9%, got a health care plan through when the Clintons couldn't, and cleaned up Bush's mess and they still hate him enough to put a GOP Congress in place to block his every move, if you're wondering why voters "keep voting against their self-interest" the answer is that America is nowhere near as enlightened as we pretend it is, and our electorate even less so.

But go ahead and keep telling yourself that all US Presidents get asked to show their birth certificates and get photoshopped with a bone through their nose, and that nobody can possibly be like Anthony from San Diego there.

Election 2014 Winners And Losers

Time for some brutally frank words about the election, who came out on top, and who faceplanted on the stage.  Time to document the atrocities, as they say:

The Winners

Tea Party Pretenders Joni Ernst and Cory Gardner
These two snow-jobbed not only their states, but the nation as well. A pair of Teabagger fists in velvet gloves, they ran masterful campaigns against bad candidates and won easily, much like Rand Paul did four years ago. The Villagers ate them up and Colorado and Iowa, like Kentucky, are going to find out just how embarrassing Senators can be.  Six years is going to be a long, long time for the voters in these two states.

Actual Senate Majority Leader Ted Cruz
Mitch may get the shiny job title and Harry Reid's office, but the guy actually running things in the upper chamber is going to be Ted Cruz and his Tea Party Circus. Cruz's 2016 chances hinge on how much chaos he can cause by becoming a spinning tornado of red state red meat, and there's going to be a lot of it flying around over the next two years.

Obstruction And Gridlock
Republicans proved beyond a doubt that they can now get away with any sort of bad behavior that hurts the country and the middle class, and that the people that actually bother to show up to vote will never punish them for it. They'll just blame That One.  Why the hell would Republicans start compromising now?  They're winning, and that's all that matters.  If they can keep the country broken to the point of mass voter apathy, 2016 will be a cake walk for them and they know it.

FOX News
The Age of Obama has been very, very good to Roger Ailes and his propaganda squad.  Loading up for bear for 2016 with guaranteed ratings for the next two years means they'll be able to pick all the fights they want to.  You thought they hated Obama before?  You ain't seen nothin' yet, kids.

Chris Christie
Head of the Republican Governor's Association, on top of being the Villagers' sentimental favorite, and just proved he can make winners.  GOP picked up governor's mansions in Illinois, Massachusetts and Maryland(!!?!?) and defended in Florida, Michigan and Wisconsin and Kansas, all races they were supposed to lose. Like it or not, "Sit down and shut up" Christie gets credit for being The Asshole Who Wins. 

The Rich
Of course.  Best couple billion ever spent to get people not to vote.

Hillary Clinton
Yes, Hillary Clinton.  All of the above winners need an enemy, after all, and Obama won't be President forever (as much as they'd love it.) No matter what she actually does, she's the one all the GOP will be running against. She will be known by the enemies she makes.

The Losers

Steve Israel, Michael Bennet, and Debbie Wasserman Schultz
The head of the Dems' House re-election committee, Senate re-election committee, and DNC chair, respectively.  All need to be removed from those positions by the end of the week.  Israel in fact has already tendered his resignation as his Blue Dog candidates for House were destroyed in the election. But Bennet's head needs to roll too for his epic Senate foul up and Wasserman Schultz cannot be replaced quickly enough.  Bennet especially needs to get tossed out on his ass, as he was the "genius" behind the Bannock Street Project, the Dems' turnout engine in 2014.  Guess what?  Worst turnout in nearly a century, Mike.  Your ass needs to be gone in a heartbeat. That's the real house cleaning the Dems need to do.

Martin O'Malley
The Maryland governor and prospective 2016 White House candidate ended his Presidential run Tuesday when his hand-picked successor and Lieutentant Governor went down in flames to a Republican.  Instead of being on the road testing the waters for 2016, he should have been taking care of business in his own damn state.  The complete opposite of Chris Christie, which makes him a truly awesome human being, but a loser of a political maestro.

John Boehner
Congrats, Orange Julius!  You win two more years of riding herd on a pile of writhing hate-filled rabid beasts who all want to destroy you!  Good luck with that.

Mitch McConnell
Congrats, Old-Age Mutant Nimrod Turtle!  You win two more years of riding herd on a pile of writhing hate-filled rabid beasts who all want to destroy you!  Good luck with that.  Also, do you know that Ted Cruz has your job?

Rand Paul
You're not Ted Cruz, and Ted Cruz has Mitch's job.  Also, good luck with your crazy dad.  Also, since Ketucky Democrats kept the state House, you're going to have to decide whether or not you really want to run for President or Senate in 2016, because you can't do both.  Please do the former, so I can be rid of you for good.

Jury's Still Out On...

President Obama
Depends on what he does on immigration executive action, how the war against ISIS goes, and how many veto pens he has ready to go.  The lesson here however is betting against Obama usually ends in tragedy, something both Republicans and Democrats will re-learn in the next two years.

I've basically stopped watching them, but they are a necessary counter to FOX News.  They are terrible at being that counter, but they're still necessary.

Voter Suppression Laws
Near record low turnout for a midterm sure shows how effective they are in the South, but that happened too in blue states like California, Oregon and Colorado where voting is super easy.  The best voter suppression is voter depression.

Make your thoughts known in the comments, I want to hear from you guys.


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