URLs du Jour

2020-02-12

  • For instant analysis of the New Hampshire Primary results, let's go first to Michael Ramirez:

    [Bye Bye to Wheezy Joe]

    Other observations:

    • The guy I voted for—a vote of which I am not particularly proud—Lying Weasel Bill Weld is managing 9% against President Trump (85%). According to the as-I-type WMUR results, anyway. "Write-Ins" are in third place.
    • On the D side, I'm pretty much a "can't they all lose?" kind of guy. So my rays of sunshine include (fourth and fifth place) Liz and Joe not managing double-digit percentages!
    • But I'm also gladdened by Tom Steyer's lousy (sixth place) showing. He easily won Pun Salad's "most annoying TV ads" award this time around. As I type, he's in a poor sixth place. My guess is that he spent more ad dollars per vote than any other "major" candidate. See below, however.
    • But I'm saddened by the poor (seventh place) showing of My Little Aloha Sweetie, Tulsi Gabbard. About a thousand votes behind Steyer! Who also had a lot of ads, a lot of signs, and wound up not impressing a lot of Democrats.
    • Also kind of sad about Andrew Yang (eighth place). Although he's currently beating "Write-Ins" by a two-to-one margin, that was not enough to stop him from withdrawing from the race.
    • Despite self-funding his campaign to the tune of $15 million, and appearing on both D and R ballots, Roque “Rocky” De La Fuente only got 10 D votes and 135 R votes. (I don't know that he spent any of that cash in New Hampshire.)

    See you in 2024, folks.

    The one remaining bit of bad news. Although the local ABC affiliated TV station is safe for now, the Massachusetts primary is still three weeks away. Which means the intelligence-insulting TV ads will keep coming on the Boston-based Fox/CBS/NBC stations we watch. Thank goodness for TiVo commercial skipping.


  • At Reason, Peter Suderman is reality-based, and declares that Trump’s Budget Plan Is an Economic Fantasy. After pointing out that (among others) Liz Warren is outright lying about the "cuts" in the Presidential budget…

    The president's annual budget proposal has about as much impact on the budget process as the lunch menu in the Rayburn House Office Building cafeteria, possibly less, given that one actually impacts the disposition of sitting members of Congress. No serious person, which admittedly excludes some presidential candidates, thinks otherwise, which is why virtually every news story about the budget has some version of a to-be-sure-this-does-not-matter caveat buried somewhere in the warnings about budget cuts and secret limited government radicalism. ("The White House budget is largely a messaging document," reports The New York Times. "The proposal is unlikely to become law," notes The Wall Street Journal. "What ultimately gets passed may show little resemblance to what the President has proposed," explains CNN.) GOP lawmakers are treating it with the sort of respect they usually reserve for protesters wearing sandwich boards: "In the end," Sen. Mike Enzi (R–Wyo.) told The Wall Street Journal, "they are just a list of suggestions." 

    In addition to the "cuts" that won't happen, the budget proposal also includes economic growth assumptions that are widely considered to be rosier than the annual parade in Pasadena.


  • [Amazon Link]
    Orson Bean died at the age of 91. You might assume natural causes, but no: he was hit by a car in LA. Young 'uns may not be familiar; here's Wikipedia if you need a refresher.

    And his bit in the movie Being John Malkovich is one of the funniest things I've seen in a major motion picture.

    Anyway, Power Line's Scott Johnson reproduces something from Mr. Bean that I hope you find worth your time: How Orson Bean found God.

    For most of my life I didn’t believe in God. Who had time? I was too busy with things of this world: getting ahead, getting laid, becoming famous. For most of my adult life I’ve been at least somewhat famous. Not so famous that I had to wear dark glasses to walk down the street, but famous enough that head waiters would give me a good table.

    I didn’t want to be famous for its own sake. I wanted to be famous so as to be happy. My earliest memory, as a little kid, was deciding to be happy. I did my childhood in Cambridge Massachusetts in a rented apartment near Harvard Square. My father was a yard cop at the University. He was also a member of Mensa. An odd combination: an intellectual yard cop. My mother was a beautiful drunk. She was Calvin Coolidge’s second cousin and spent some time in the White House when Cousin Cal was president. Her parents, staunch Vermont Republicans, were not thrilled when their daughter took up with a New Deal Democrat who barely made a living.

    And more. Orson's book, available from Amazon via link at right.


  • Our World in Data asks What are the safest sources of energy? And I hope the answer won't surprise you:

    (Their article was originally published in 2017, it's been recently updated. Show it to your local enviromentalist.)


  • And let's let David Harsanyi get in one more slam at a perennial candidate before he goes away for good: Joe Biden & Gun Rights: He Doesn't Understand Second Amendment. Not only did Joe utter gibberish about having “20, 30, 40, 50 clips in a weapon", he also said:

    This has to be the first time in history that a serious presidential contender has publicly gamed-out how a modern American military — armed with F-15s and air-to-surface missiles — would crush an imaginary citizen-led insurgency. (Sorry, Eric Swalwell — even though you once mocked Second Amendment supporters as being unable to defeat a government armed with nukes, you were never a serious presidential contender, so you don’t count.)

    For one thing, it’s a weird way to appeal to a broad swath of voters. It’s also an ignorant way to talk about millions of law-abiding and peaceful American gun owners — many of them in contested states such as Wisconsin and Michigan — who are far less inclined to violence than the average WTO protester.

    And David goes on to take poor Joe to Strawman School.