A brief political update

…several days after writing this, and having spent some time reading on and thinking about Michael Bloomberg as a candidate for the presidency, I feel compelled to inform you that he is now indisputably my last-choice candidate, and the only circumstances under which I will vote for him is if he somehow gains the nomination and I have no other choice. I actually feel like I did Sanders a disservice by ranking the two of them together.

Furthermore, I will cheerfully endorse any number of convention-based delegate shenanigans to deny him said nomination if necessary, regardless of which other candidate said shenanigans hands the nomination to.


One other thought, actually, and this is coming late enough that I’ve already hit “publish” on this post– I have officially given up on the idea that I Know Anything about politics, which is why you haven’t really seen me attempting to make any broad predictions about how either the primary or the overall race may be going beyond my insistence that you cannot declare the primary over before Black and Hispanic voters have had a chance to weigh in– and tomorrow will give us a fair amount of useful information on that account. The polls have been an enormous Goddamned mess throughout the primary, and given that I am utterly unable to understand why anyone would willfully and intentionally vote for the shitgibbon beyond the purest and most undistilled love for white supremacy, I’m not going to be any damn good at, say, predicting which Democratic candidate might be more electable than any other.

I strongly suspect that electable is code for “old white dude with good hair” anyway, if we’re being honest.

In which I try to rank Elizabeth Warren and a bunch of people I don’t want to vote for

The last time I did this was– Jesusalmost a God damn year ago, and since then not only has Kamala Harris dropped out, but so has everyone else I wanted to vote for except for Buttigieg, who has spent most of the last eleven months making me dislike him. I have gone from a Democratic presidential primary where I went through eight people before even entering “meh” territory to one person I want to vote for– Warren– a bunch of people who I despise, and Amy Klobuchar, who I wouldn’t have even considered a serious candidate any longer until New Hampshire, and frankly I probably shouldn’t start treating her for-real seriously until she does better in more than one state.

What I have been saying for the last several months remains true: this race is still Biden’s to lose, despite his poor performance in Iowa and New Hampshire, because unless the poll results have shifted radically in the last couple of weeks he’s still the only candidate with a serious base of support in the black community, who are still the base of the Democratic party and who haven’t had a chance to vote yet because of how fucking stupid our nomination process is. I have heard tell that those numbers are starting to shift, though, and if they are, Biden’s fucked, which is kind of fine because I think he’s slowly losing his shit and I don’t really want to vote for him.

But … God, I don’t want to vote for any of these fuckers other than Warren, and every time I try to think seriously about ranking them, I spend most of my time pondering the inevitability of death instead. I mean, to be clear: I’m voting for the fucking Democratic nominee in November, full stop; I don’t give a fuck who it is. But I really don’t like any of them beyond Warren, and I remember enjoying being able to vote for candidates who I wanted to hold office, damn it.

So.

2. … Klobuchar, I guess? Who is an asshole, and a moderate, and she’s shitty to her staff, but that’s all I’ve got and she hasn’t managed to personally piss me off yet? Plus, she’s a woman and she doesn’t have one foot in the grave or any obvious decline in her mental facilities? So, yeah, sure, Klobuchar’s second, I suppose, mostly because someone has to be.

3. Buttigieg. I have voted for Pete Buttigieg literally every single time he has run for office, and I don’t want to ever vote for him again. Yes, in March I was somewhat enthusiastic about his candidacy. And he’s spent damn near every second since then trying to drive me away with his Jesusiness and his Kumbaya approach to “working with” people who would literally rather see him dead than in office. But much like Klobuchar he has the advantages of not being senile or nearly dead, and I’m not convinced he’d be a shitty President, and he’s smart, if perhaps not as smart as he thinks he is, and if he made a sensible pick for VP he might not be a disaster as a President, although of the current group I think he’s the one most likely to run for a second term and lose.

4. Fuck it, Biden. Who is running an absolute shit campaign, and who is perhaps not as senile as I thought he might have been a bit ago (I was unaware until recently that he has battled a stutter his whole life, and that explains a couple of things) but is still noticeably not as sharp as he was a decade ago, and has run for President three times now and so far still has not ever managed to finish higher than third in a primary. And he clearly doesn’t understand the nature of the opposition he’s facing, either, because he’s competing with Pete for the Kumbaya naïveté awards. But at least he’s not either of those other two assholes, and of the group of three he’s the one most likely to have some fucking sense and not run for a second term in the first place. Leaving me with …

Bernie and Bloomberg, and fuck both of ’em, I’m not ranking them. I loathe Bernie Sanders. I like his policies but Warren’s are every bit as good as his and she’s not a garbage human and she’s actually got some accomplishments in her life, unlike Mr. Myocardial Infarction Where The Fuck Are Your Taxes, whose life’s work boils down to not having a job until he was 40, naming a couple of post offices, and exactly three black-and-white photos of him being a massive civil rights hero on par with Malcolm X, Jesus and Martin Luther King combined. He will be a desperately shitty President and nothing will be accomplished during his single term in office, if he even lasts that long without dying, because who the hell knows what kind of condition his God damn heart is in; his campaign has lied about it endlessly and he’s refused to release his medical records. Which is not fucking forgivable even before you get to the part where he’s basically a cult leader and I cannot tolerate the idea of an America where the Bernie Bros have political power.

(Am I calling every Bernie voter a cultist? No. I am explicitly not doing that, and if you are a Bernie person and I know you I am also explicitly not calling you personally that. But I stand by the statement nonetheless, particularly in the context of the vile hordes of his people I have to deal with online.)

Bloomberg, on the other hand, is a racist piece of shit and a blood-gorged tick on the nuts of humanity, and he’s carefully and clearly exposing every single thing wrong with what we are still calling our “democracy” for some reason. I have no idea why anyone would ever choose to vote for him, and the fact that he’s registering in the polls at all is a sign of how dangerously and completely fucked we are. If somehow the race is down to these two by the time the Indiana primary rolls around I’m probably just not going to vote. Again, I’ll vote for the nominee even if I hate him, which is looking more likely by the day, but I’ll be damned if I endorse either of these fuckers twice if I don’t absolutely have to.

(EDIT: When and if Bloomberg turns out to be a serial sexual harasser and/or a rapist, which I’m figuring even odds on, he immediately falls off the list altogether. That would be one thing that would definitively shove him under Sanders for me.)

Democratic POTUS Candidates Loosely Ranked, June 2019 Pre-Debate edition

Let’s be clear here: right there in that picture is the ticket I want, and I don’t much care what order their names are in. I haven’t updated this since March, mostly because not a whole lot has happened to change things other than that my affection for Warren and Harris has continued to grow. I once told a phonebanker that I would drag my nuts across a mile of broken glass to ensure that I voted for Barack Obama; I’m not quite at that level yet but I’m certainly getting there. And, really, once you get past these two, there’s not a whole lot of talking to do.

SECOND TIER: In no particular order, Inslee, Gillibrand, O’Rourke, who hasn’t annoyed me in a while, and Castro. I don’t think any of these four will be the nominee but I’d be perfectly fine if it happened.

THIRD TIER: Klobuchar and Booker.

YOU FUCKERS AREN’T EVEN REAL PEOPLE, RUN FOR SOMETHING YOU HAVE A CHANCE TO WIN: de Blasio, Ryan, Hickenlooper, Delaney, Williamson, Yang, Bennet, Swalwell, and that Montana jackass who announced his campaign in May and thinks it’s a sign of a conspiracy that he isn’t in the debates. These folks don’t count at all and they’re a distraction to the process. I only know they exist because I copied their names from the debate lineup and I couldn’t pick any of them out of a lineup. After the first debate they need to all drop out.

HA HA, BYE, ASSHOLE: That Starbucks dickhead, who I think dropped out finally.

STILL DON’T WANT TO VOTE FOR YOU BUT YOU HAVEN’T PISSED ME OFF ANY MORE THAN USUAL LATELY: Sanders and Gabbard.

FUCK THESE GUYS: Biden and Buttigieg, who are probably going to end up being the fucking ticket. Biden, in particular, who I wasn’t excited about running for office but certainly didn’t dislike six months ago, has done every single thing he can to keep me from generating even the slightest whiff of enthusiasm for his campaign, including praising motherfucking James Eastland today. He clearly learned nothing from being Obama’s Vice-President for 8 years and still thinks that Republicans are just misunderstood nice folks who can be negotiated with if we just all come together. Well, they aren’t and they can’t, not anymore, and not recognizing that basic fact about the state of politics in this country right now is disqualifying for the Democratic candidate. Combine that with overt, undeniable sexism and an utter inability to keep his fucking hands to himself and this is not someone I want to vote for. He may even be legitimately lower than Sanders at this point. Plus, he’s getting the same kind of support that that one asshole who lost my most recent Congressional race did– in other words, he’s on top of the polls for some reason but hell if I can find even a single person anywhere who thinks of him as their top candidate. I asked Twitter about this earlier:

Not one response, other than a guy who said he wasn’t in his top 5. This guy has to have some fans somewhere. Who the hell are they?

Buttigieg, on the other hand, was once right behind Harris and Warren, and has spent most of his time since then basically doing the same shit Biden’s doing except at lower volume and without the handsiness. He’s a step above Biden and Sanders, certainly, but he’s drawing from the same Kumbaya school of thought about where we are right now and I’m not fucking having it. His reluctance if not outright refusal to release anything resembling actual policies is also starting to get on my nerves, particularly when stacked up against Warren, who I think at this point probably has a detailed plan for alien invasion, the Yellowstone caldera erupting, and multiple varieties of zombie attack. He probably doesn’t belong in the same tier as Biden if I’m being honest but I’ve still spent most of my time thinking about him lately being annoyed by whatever he did most recently. Another difference: I know people who are fervent supporters. I know where his people are coming from. Not the case with Joe. Seriously, if you consider yourself a big fan of his, identify yourself. I promise I’ll be nice.

Will there be a liveblog of the debates next week? Yeah, chances are there will.

MARCH UPDATE: Democratic presidential candidates, loosely ranked

_103871624_tv048545996I’m … probably not going to actually do this every month until the election?  And, well, actually, it doesn’t even make sense to say that, because there won’t be 1000 candidates for the nomination for very long.  So this won’t be a regular feature for long enough to become annoying.  But what the hell, it’s fun and helps me organize my thinking a little bit.  So.  Again, don’t take the specific rankings all that seriously.

Also, I’m removing the two minor candidates who I went a month and didn’t hear anything from.  I’ll put them back in if they ever start making any noise.

  1. Kamala Harris and Elizabeth Warren (TIE).  This may very well be a function of the way I consume news nowadays, but it seems like for the last few weeks every time I turn around Warren’s campaign has been announcing some bit of policy that I like, and I feel like Harris has been mostly quiet.  This is more a function of me learning more about Warren and liking everything I see than any drop in my admiration for Harris, but at this point I’d be perfectly happy with either of them.  Put a gun to my head and I still probably vote for Harris but I feel like I want to recognize how much happier I am with Warren than I was a month ago.  So: tie.
  2. Pete Buttigieg.  I know I’ve been talking about Buttigieg a lot more than any of the other candidates, but that’s because he’s still such a longshot.   He’s raised enough money from enough people to qualify for the first debates, and his townhall on CNN went phenomenally well.  Right now I still kind of hope he’s running for VP, though; I’d drag my nuts over a mile of broken glass to cast a vote for a Harris/Buttigieg or Warren/Buttigieg ticket– and in Warren’s case, this would go a long way toward calming my concerns about her age.
  3. Jay Inslee.  I’ve seen a few interviews with Gov. Inslee in the last month, and I really like what I’ve seen from him.  He’s currently at the top of the “I don’t know much, but I like you” pile.
  4. Kirsten Gillibrand.  Whose name I spelled correctly on the first try, thank you very much.
  5. Julián Castro.  Another who really hasn’t changed positions much from last month.
  6. Amy Klobuchar.
  7. Cory Booker, and at this point we’re edging into “Ehhh … I will if I have to but I’d really rather not” territory.  Most of everything I’ve seen from Booker this month has caused me to roll my eyes and/or groan, and I was already not super hot about his candidacy in the first place.
  8. (A fairly wide gap, not represented by any single candidate)
  9. Beto O’Rourke.  Beto talks a good game and can be inspiring at times, but I had a moment where I realized just how much he reminds me of John Edwards, and … no, thank you, let’s all move on.  Another friend of mine compared him to the male professor who teaches classes on feminism and is secretly sleeping with several of his students.  He’s kind of a douchebag and I don’t really know how much he believes anything that comes out of his mouth and a guy who couldn’t beat 10,000 slugs pretending to be human in a poorly-fitting suit does not get to then go “Oh, never mind, I’ll just be President instead.”  Plus I feel like he’s stealing oxygen from Buttigieg, who would be a vastly better President.
  10. John Hickenlooper.  Who I initially forgot all about, but ends up low on the list because of his dumbassed “Why aren’t we asking women candidates about white male VPs” comment.  We don’t need you, dude.
  11. Tulsi Gabbard.  Still hasn’t made enough of an impact to give me a reason to move her down, also has given me no reason to move her up.
  12. Bernie Sanders.  I’ve said my piece about him any number of times and it’s not really necessary to repeat it again.  But he’s not last anymore!  Because of …
  13. Andrew Yang.  He keeps popping up on my radar on Twitter, and every time it’s because he’s being dumb one way or another.  That said, he makes most of the second- and third-tier candidates on this list look like frontrunners in terms of his chances of being elected, so I probably don’t even really need him on the list at all.
  14. Howard Schultz.  Also probably shouldn’t be here because he’s not a Democrat in any way I’m willing to recognize– not even in the half-assed way Sanders is–  but still, fuuuuhuhuhuck this guy.

Democratic presidential candidates, loosely ranked

A friend of mine did this earlier this week as a Facebook post and without any explanations; God forbid I be so succinct. Standard disclaimers; this is extremely early and I reserve the right to change my mind at any time and for any reason. Furthermore, this is only for the primary; I will vote for any of these people with a song in my soul and a spring in my step against the shitgibbon in 2020.

Also, I’m only including people who have at least announced an exploratory committee.

  1. Kamala Harris. Absolutely my horse, as far as such things go, at the moment. I have some concerns about her record as Attorney General of California, as I suspect many of her fans do, but those are tempered by several notable accomplishments (“You will begin the marriages immediately.”) and a near-perfect record in the Senate thus far. In addition, she’s my favorite of the candidates as a human being. I would, to trot out a well-worn phrase, like to have … well, not a beer, as I don’t drink, but some sort of tasty beverage in her presence.
  2. Elizabeth Warren. Very close to Harris; her age and race are the main things holding her back from the top spot. Call me names if you like; my preference where I have a choice at this point is to vote for people of color, and she is going to be 70 before the election happens. I’m sorry; I want someone younger for the toughest job in the world.
  3. Pete Buttigieg. I know, I’m as surprised as you. I think this guy has the potential to be an outstanding President. I really, really don’t think it’ll happen in 2020, but I would like him in the race for a while to get him some name recognition and get his ideas out there. Seriously, y’all, go watch some interviews.
  4. Kirsten Gillibrand.  At this point we’re starting to dip into the candidates that I don’t know a lot about, honestly; she gets the edge over #5 mostly because, if I’m looking at candidates that I don’t know much about, I lean toward electing someone with Senate experience over someone with mayoral and Cabinet experience. Yes, I know Buttigieg is #3. I know a lot more about him and I ain’t gotta be perfectly consistent anyway; deal with it.
  5. Julián Castro. Kinda already discussed him with #4 up there. To be clear, we’re still in “no real reservations” territory here; I just don’t know a lot about him to push him any higher or lower.
  6. Amy Klobuchar. At this point we’re entering “minor reservations” territory. Klobuchar has the reputation of being extremely difficult to work for. I’m not sure how genuine that is, but it’s not a characteristic I really want in a President. However, she still gets the edge over …
  7. Cory Booker.  Booker is the first candidate I have genuine policy differences with, as his record on education and charter schools while mayor of Newark, New Jersey was terrible. That said, so was Obama’s. I probably will not have the opportunity to vote for someone whose positions on K-12 education I actually like, but at the moment I know I don’t like Booker’s. On everything else that I know about, we’re still good.
  8. The ones I haven’t heard of. My friend’s list includes people named Yang, Delaney and Williamson; I couldn’t even tell you their first names and I assume they are vanity candidates of one sort or another. However, as effectively anonymous, “pick them out of the phone book” ciphers, they nonetheless remain preferable to
  9. Tulsi Gabbard and
  10. Bernie Sanders. It might surprise you to see Gabbard’s name ahead of Sanders’. Most of the people I pay attention to who are following the race closely despise Gabbard, who does more or less seem to be terrible. However, I personally don’t know much about her, and my loathing for Bernie Sanders increases every time he opens his mouth. Right now, I’d vote for her over him, but hopefully I will never have to make that choice. That would probably change if I looked more deeply into her record, but as I don’t expect her candidacy to last very long I don’t plan on investing that effort. Sanders, who has no chance, is going to stay in the race acting exactly like a hypothetical Russian stooge might act at every possible opportunity until the very moment his money dries up. I am already desperately tired of him, and he’s not going to go away.

We’ll revisit in a month or two, and see if the rankings have slid around at all, and who else might have jumped in. Whee!