Monday, May 23, 2022

Cut them off

The whole reason the U.S. kowtows to the KSA is so that they will not use their oil wealth as a weapon against U.S. interests. If they refuse to help the U.S. economically, what is the point of continuing to help them murder Yemenis? While I don't really approve of American policies that prop up oppressive dictatorships to protect American economic interests, it is even more absurd when the oppressive dictatorships refuse to protect American economic interests. If the Saudis want to make the relationship purely transactional, then fine, make U.S. support contingent on Saudi support for U.S. policies. And certainly there is no reason to tolerate this shit.

The only consistent principle is the Biden Administration loses

Thursday, May 19, 2022

Trump might help Democrats in Pennsylvania

If I had to predict how the Oz-McCormick vote count will go, it is that McCormick will win by a hair. After in-person votes were counted, Oz was ahead by a few thousand votes. But because Oz is the Trump-endorsed candidate, and McCormick was viewed as the option for whatever remaining non-Trumpy Republicans there are, he is likely to get most of the mail-in votes because voting by mail has become toxic to Trumpers.

But if McCormick narrowly wins, that is sure to provoke a temper-tantrum by the Trumpers. It hasn't even officially happened yet and the tantrum has already started! That fight within the GOP can only advantage the Democrats and will make it more likely that Fetterman will be PA's next Senator.

I'm convinced the only reason that both Warnock and Ossoff won the Georgia runoff in early 2021 is because Trump kept claiming that the Georgia election system was corrupt, which depressed the Republican vote and delivered control of the Senate to Democrats. Any narrow loss by Oz is likely cause the same charges about the PA electoral system, which could depress Republican turnout in November and giving Democrats an extra advantage in both the Senate and Governor's race.

Friday, May 13, 2022

Everyone loves to talk about electability, has little idea what it is

I'm also puzzled why the media can't accept that the sitting Lieutenant Governor is not the "establishment candidate" in this race. Is it really just the hoodie?

I guess I could get annoyed by the way the media keeps treating him like he's some kind of outsider. Except he is probably going to get the nomination and this spin might help him in the general election.

Wednesday, May 11, 2022

Leaks are more likely when the Court is highly politicized

I joked about it before, but I think all these leaks are more likely to happen when respect for the Court as an institution collapses. I don't think the leaks are damaging the reputation of the Court, as conservatives claim. But I do think it is the other way around. When the Court is widely recognized as a place for political machinations, then political machinations (like leaks) become fair game.

When does a leak become a gush?

Tuesday, May 10, 2022

The age of elite impunity

I really think that the defining characteristic of our time is the idea that the rich and powerful should never face any consequences, broadly defined to include even any non-polite public criticism, for their actions.

How else can you explain the Senate's unanimous passage of this bill in response to a peaceful crowd of people holding candles in Justice Kavanaugh's neighborhood at the invitation of Kavanaugh's neighbors. The Senate doesn't pass much unanimously these days. But this bill's easy passage makes clear that Senators are identifying with Kavanaugh, not the protesters, even the ones whose politics more closely aligns with the protesters. The thought of people standing with candles across the street from your house is a threat.

While I don't know if protesting outside a Justice's house is an effective way to cause change, I also don't know if there is anything protesters can do to influence the Supreme Court. And yet when the public increasingly views the Court as illegitimate, while it tosses aside precedent to rule in favor of unpopular policies, there is going to be a public backlash.

Monday, May 09, 2022

Do they think outlawing birth control would be popular?

I realize that a lot of conservatives are slobbering over the prospect that the fall of Roe/Casey will mean that the privacy rights under Griswald v. Connecticut can also be overruled, but is there much a constituency for actually outlawing birth control?

We all live in our own bubbles, but while I know plenty of people who are anti-abortion, I don't know anyone, I mean literally anyone, who is anti-birth control. Even among the 30% or so who want abortion outlawed in every circumstance, do a clear majority of them (and just that group of anti-abortion absolutists) want to outlaw birth control?

I would guess the answer is no. But maybe that's just my bubble talking.

Saturday, May 07, 2022

Resign Justice Thomas!

I'm glad that Clarence Thomas is worried that respect for institutions, particularly respect for the Supreme Court, is eroding because Thomas is one of the few individuals who can actually do something about it. If he can't figure it out himself, all he has to do is read the title of this post.