Michelle Wolf is my hero

Before delving further, if you haven’t already, take 20 minutes to watch Michelle Wolf’s set at the Washington Correspondents Dinner. I’ll wait.

In my view, that’s some solid shit right there. The impact it made might wither in a few days but for her time at the podium, Wolf took aim at Trump, Sanders, CNN, Hannity, Maddow, all of Washington, DC, more or less, and hit the target every. damned. time. It was like Wolf cornered the DC press at their own party and told them what she really thought. And it was in front of all of the politicians and luminaries, which had to make it really embarrassing.

And before I continue, I want to stress wholeheartedly that there is No Liberal Media. Also, there is No Conservative Media. There is only a Corporation-Friendly Media. What that means is that the Media will report what works best for its bottom line. Who benefited the most from the constant coverage of the Trump circus more than Trump? CNN, FOX News, and MSNBC. For all the hubbub over coarse material, cruel jokes, bashing Trump, wishing Kellyanne Conway gets stuck under a tree, etc., Wolf’s focus on the utter and miserable failure the Media are is the real story here. DC press love their access, so much so that, because of their failures, our country is currently run by a racist, sexist, petty manchild president and a compliant yet still toothless Congress all of whom possess weapons grade levels of indifference, callousness, and disdain for the very people they are supposed to represent that safety nets are sliced through. We’re supposed to be the Leader of the Free World but people are struggling so much that they resort to crowdfunding to pay for a family member’s funeral arrangements, mom’s cancer bills, or whatever else deep shit Dickensian Hell we have found ourselves in.

Sidenote: Trump didn’t go because he says why should he go to something when he knows he’s going to be made fun of. Dear Fragile Snowflake: You are in charge of the United States of America. It ain’t a TV show and if it was, your ratings would be enough to shitcan you. Even the overnight Quacker Factory segments on QVC has bigger numbers. No, Trump didn’t go because that his skin is so thin as to be translucent. That thin skin also comes with a heaping level of vengeful acidity. Don’t believe me? President Obama once used the Correspondents Dinner to gently rib El Ducheeto’s birtherism. Trump took that shit so hard he’s spent a good deal of his administration undoing Obama’s legacy.

Back to Michelle Wolf and the dinner, just reading reactions from the Washington Post, the New York Times, some of the “press elites“, it’s obvious they don’t like being criticized. For all the charges of “low hanging fruit” or being mean to Uncle Sarah Huckabee, Wolf flat out undressed Washington and its fawning, complicit (if not complacent) press corps. Primo tip, guyz: it’s not Michelle Wolf. It’s you!

Because as much as the Media wants to tell us otherwise she accomplished something very important: she stood up for you and me, the news consumers. They need to know that they’re failing miserably at their job. Because here’s what’s been my issue with The Media since, oh, round about the run-up to the Iraq War: they’re so wrapped up in having access to the White House and Congress that they have been failing fundamentally in their one job.

And by failing in that job, they’ve failed us.

Michelle Wolf is my hero today.



Life and Soul

In my opinion, gallows humor is not callous humor. As much as I miss my parents, I have a distinct irreverence towards their current state (dead) and their current activities (not much), so a dark joke at their lack of expense isn’t out of the question. It’s how I’m wired. Indeed, my dad used to joke with friends often that he had purchased “property in Kentucky”. When they’d ask him where, he’d mention the cemetery plot where his mortal remains currently reside. Dad was a paramedic and would sometimes come home with stories of having picked up some poor soul who eventually became a DOA on the way to the hospital. His kids, especially me with my proclined attitude towards a morbid curiosity, would often ask how this particular person died. Dad’s response was, “his heart stopped beating”.

This is all to say that my humor tends dangles in the dark, crossing from time to time into the nihilistic. In most extreme cases, there’s a distinct antinatalist. One of my favorite Bill Hicks quotes is “We’re a virus with shoes”. In the election that would doom us to the wiles of Trumpian ignorance and bombast or to the Not-Quite-As-Evil yet surely to be obstructed to tedium Clintonian neo-liberalism, I considered throwing my support towards Asteroid/Plague 2016. It’s how my mind works.

Life and soul of the party, I am.

These last few weeks have been rather stress-based. I work a job where I’m underemployed and even further underpaid. We work a rich man’s hobby and, frankly, I’m better than what I do there. Heck, all of us are, but no one wants to pay in this economy. My brain is run through with ruts trying to get out of this problem — because I am still yoked to a capitalist’s thinking. For all the railing and distrust of a system generated to keep most of us indebted and in-debt, I still have that hangover. It was like when I walked away from Judeo-Christian (ie, “religious”) beliefs. Even though I knew I was getting away from a system that was harshly authoritarian and patriarchal, I still had doubt in my doubt. Anyways, it means that I have a hard time taking step one, meanwhile, I grow bitter and resentful of working for a company that has only slightly less disregard for their clientele as they do their employees. That’s my bridge of matches to burn later, I guess.

It’s hard to stay funny in a universe in which everything is programmed to deteriorate.

Ranting Impotently: Election 2016 edition: The Thought Plickens

Thoughts after watching coverage of last night’s DNC and the obstreperousness of the stubborn jackasses that make up the Bernie or Bust folks…

Dear Hillary, Schultzie, DNC, et al,

Congratulations on a first night of the convention. You managed to pack more composure, relevance, and multiculturalism in one night than the GOP did in their last three conventions. Also, please, somehow, some way, Hill, if you get elected, find a way to make Michelle Obama an ambassador for something. No, seriously, that speech was so good that Trump’s wife du jour wishes she could retroactively plagiarise it.

Now, a few days ago, I let you have it over the Wikileaked emails where you tenaciously, belligerently, and myopically decided to put your thumbs on the scales for Hill. Let’s face facts: that doesn’t make you look good at all. Nor does it make your campaign look strong to turn around and embrace Schultzie into the fold mere minutes after she’s ousted as head of DNC. Ah well, who says politics doesn’t lead to cronyism, right? Just ask the Bush family. Also, it’s appreciated that you apologized for insulting Bernie and his followers. If you don’t think that matters, consider the lack of apologies the Festering Goober of Hatred’s campaign has issued, from mocking a disabled person to retweeting White Nationalists to even waving away accusations of plagiarism in last week’s RNC speeches. To the likes of him and his followers, culpability is a multi-syllabic word that’s hard to pronounce and probably only pussies do it.

So I’m coming back, somewhat humbly but mostly bitterly because I need you to do something for me: win this election. I know, this is not going to be easy. Some recent polling numbers have you either within the margin of error or slightly behind. Hopefully, the convention gives you a nice bounce and you can use that as some sort of momentum into the general election. Good luck, because you’re going to need it. You have a hard road ahead of you, but making history is never a slam dunk.

Unfortunately, you’ll no longer have Schultzie setting the debate schedule for you. In fact, it’s the debates that really concern me. I mean, how do you debate someone that doesn’t dabble in reality? The Wikileaks thing definitely tarnishes you, but if there is credible evidence that this is some Russian fixing and it can be tied to He Who Must Never Be Prez, well, I hope even you can defeat a treasonous bastard like him.

There’s also some hard work in winning over the Berners. Yeah, I think most of them are going to do the right thing and unite for the Greater Good. Yet, there’s still those “voting my conscience even if it ends up putting me in a Trump gulag” few who will protest you to the (literal & figurative) end.

Lemme just say, Bernie folks, I love y’all. Really, I do. I was one of you and, as evidenced in my previous post, I was just as angry that the primary was slanted into Hill’s favorite. But the thing about a thumb on the scale is that it only adds a few ounces to what’s already there, which is Hillary’s inevitable nomination. Bernie Sanders did great and wonderful things and Hill has even adopted some of his platform. TPP? Debt-free education? You and Bernie did that. What’s more, I have no doubt that Sanders has helped shift the Democratic Party a little towards the progressive side. This is good and, should Hill become president, it’ll be important to ensure the party doesn’t slip back towards the Corporatists.

Does Bernie Sanders poll better against the Mohaired Toupee In A Sweatshop-Manufactured Suit? For now, yes. But who knows what would happen as the campaign goes on. Bernie does that that oh-so-dreaded S word associated with his name and people in this country are just stupid enough to still misconstrue Socialism for Communism. Yeah, it’s frustrating.

But the booing, the stubborn Bernie Or Bust attitude? That shit has to stop. While you’re well within the rights of this country’s beliefs to protest, the level of immaturity — even to the point of adopting the Tiny Hand’s “Lock Her Up” chant — is beyond pathetic. And then, there’s bullshit like this…

Photograph: Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images, courtesy of The Guardian.

Photograph: Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images, courtesy of The Guardian.

Seriously. That’s the kind of ridiculous melodrama that my late ex-mother-in-law used to pull. She was a character, and a PUMA to the very end, believing every bit of dishonesty that the Clintons trotted out against Obama in ’08.

Also, take note… Silenced Lady looks to be more or less left alone by the crowd. Imagine if she tried, say, protesting racism and hate at the RNC like this poor lady did.

I doubt that tape would’ve stayed on her mouth for more than five seconds had she tried that in Cleveland last week.

But a protest is a protest and I get that. You have every right to be angry that Bernie lost. But that’s the point: he lost. No amount of fixing or chicanery by Schultzie changed that outcome. Lick your wounds, organize for next time, and defeat The Orange Nightmare With Tiny Hands. The sting of democracy is that it’s always feels like tyranny to the losers. The time for symbolic protests are over. If you’re getting called ridiculous by Sarah fucking Matt Damon Silverman, who was herself an ardent Bernie supporter, maybe you should takea hard look in the mirror. To the lady in the image above, to the Bernie or Bust folks, you’re not being silenced. You’ve been outvoted.

Yes, the email hacks are damning, but y’know what’s worse? A foreign country attempting to manipulate the outcome of the election. Even worse than that is if these dirty tricks fool you into a protest vote for The Bankrupt Huckster Who Doesn’t Pay His Bills or one of those lame “Third Party” candidates that only show up every four years like impatient cicadas and make a lot of noise. No. I am by no means a Hillary fan or supporter but I will vote for her.

Because, and pardon the hyperbole here, this election is about defeating evil and tyranny. This Bloated, Enabled Tax Cheat with all of his dog-whistle rhetoric, anti-immigrant stances, and all the business acumen of a monkey eating his own shit should not be near game cheat codes, much less nuclear ones. Whatever qualms, concerns, reservations, etc., you might have about Hillary, those will dwarf in comparison to what a Trump administration would accomplish. By protest voting for a third candidate or not even going to the polls, effectively saying “fuck you” to Hillary and the Democratic Party, you’re inviting danger that would make the George W. Bush years look damned near tranquil and idyllic.

Rewatch that above video from last week’s RNC, then imagine that on a national scale. No progressive movement, no Bern Or Bust, no chance at changing the Democratic Party will happen if this Toupeed Hate Bozo wins the Oval Office.

Onward to victory.

Ranting Impotently: Election 2016 edition

Dear Hillary, Debbie, & the DNC,

Nothing’s changed. We knew you wanted to ordain Hillary as the nominee; the emails just confirm it. That the DNC would choose to strategize against a primary candidate *instead* of letting the people decide speaks volume. You strategize against the opposing parties, not your candidates.

By making it impossible for a non-establishment candidate to win, you did what the Republicans couldn’t. You’ve out-corrupted the corrupt. Nixon or Rove ain’t nothing on you.

And what’s more? You have a lot of people who identify as Democrats by the short and curlies. Do we vote for a corrupt politician who cluelessly handle sensitive data on her own private server, voted for the Iraq War, and has thought NAFTA and TPP were great ideas…  or let the bloated orange emcee at the daily Two-Minute Hate win so he can thumb his nose at NATO, fire Obama appointees, and doing more to radicalize Muslims than a lifetime subscription of Charlie Hedbo sent to every mosque in this nation. Look, I am not saying that Bernie was the one or not but let the voters figure that out, you crooked nimroids. Yeah, you probably would’ve lost the opportunity to crown Hillary but you’ve tarnished the historical moment by jerry-rigging things to tag that on a candidate who has the popularity of a colonoscopy prep. My god, what a choice.

Those who want to keep our country in some recognizable form of sanity have to choose her. Because there is a lot at stake here, no less the prospect of setting the Supreme Court for the next few years. Vote for who you helped choose or pragmatism. Do we risk that by choosing an unviable third party, a Bernie write-in, a symbolic protest vote, or just stay home with the prospect of Trump winning and, well, who knows what the hell to expect? Or do we hope that somehow there’s enough party unity to huddle up against him? As they asked the guy headed to the gallows, “Are you going to jump or will you need a little push?”

Extortionism is not pragmatism.

Also, Tim Kaine? How do you make that choice? Did he win a round of Birdshit Bingo?

Voter turnout is a huge problem in this country, to say nothing of voting suppression, what makes you think safe choices are the best things right now?

I’m sure there are more Republicans who feel similarly about their candidate, but I have no time to mourn for them. They helped create the atmosphere that led to a candidate like Trump by ginning up scary stories about Democratic presidents coming after guns or equating respect and compassion as political correctness, and waging a war on Christmas. This is just chickens coming home to roost when you’ve run out of ideas.

This is the choices we have.

We’re fucked.