In which everybody calm down

Okay, one thing is worth throwing a party over: Mike Bloomberg’s ass is out of the race, which is an unalloyed good thing that we should all be celebrating. But it’s been fascinating to me to watch the exact same people who thought Biden was over and done with after Nevada pivot on a Goddamn dime to declare him the invincible frontrunner after last night. Now, don’t misunderstand: last night was great for Biden, and bad for Sanders. But it’s far from a knockout blow, especially since we don’t know yet what the numbers from California are going to look like and Sanders is going to win California. By how much, and how much of a delegate lead that gets him from the state, we won’t know for a bit. But I suspect Biden’s already-slim lead of less than fifty delegates is going to get cut into a bit, and 45 delegates is not a great cushion, all told.

Warren– and it both pains me and makes me deeply angry to say this– is probably out. She’ll take her time and make the decision on her own, but I don’t think there’s much of a path left for her if she’s not even able to win her own home state. It’s fucked up that America is ignoring this good of a candidate, but I felt the same way about Harris. It’s a primary; I’m used to being disappointed.

The worst news for Bernie, to my mind, is that in all fifteen contests held yesterday he didn’t hit his 2016 level of support in any of them, including his home state of Vermont, and in several of them his support was down by half or more. He lost two states, Oklahoma and Minnesota, that he won in 2016. For someone whose entire rationale for being elected is that he will Motivate The Masses To Take To The Streets … well, not so much, apparently? Bernie lost in 2016 and was getting a lot more votes. I haven’t taken a close look at what states are left, but there was a pretty ironclad rule in 2016 that any state that was less than 85% white was going to go to Clinton. Now, that rule is being broken pretty handily by California right now, and his Hispanic support seems to be up from 2016, so it might not hold as well, but he only won four states yesterday. That’s … not great. But there’s a lot of primary left, and there’s no reason to count anyone out yet. Once California’s delegates come in the count is going to be very close. I don’t see anyone outside of Biden or Bernie having a chance, but those two are effectively tied at the moment.

It is at this point where I remind you that I don’t know shit about politics.

There are lots of people yammering about something called electability, and all of them, including me, are wrong. Electability is not a thing. I took a very close look at the Republican field in both 2012 and 2016 and came to the conclusion that it was rationally impossible for any of them to get the nomination, both times, and somehow both times the Republicans managed to nominate someone anyway.

Either of these people are “electable” if we vote for them. So, as it turns out, is Warren. Bernie and Biden have both been clobbering the Current Occupant by wide margins in head-to-head polls for months, if not for years in Sanders’ case, and I need to remind myself of that every time I look at either of them and my brain tries to tell me that there’s no way that guy gets elected President. I still think Sanders’ path to the White House is the more difficult one, if only because the Democrats have been unwilling to paint him as the baby-eating tax-crazed Communist that the Republicans will, and we all know he doesn’t react to criticism very well, but they’re going to call Biden a socialist too; saying insane bullshit about how insanely leftist our candidates are is kind of their thing regardless of its actual relationship to reality. There aren’t going to be any debates so any talk about who will do better against the shitgibbon in one is pointless. We need to quit worrying about this “electability” nonsense and show up to vote. Everything else will take care of itself.

In which I know nothing and neither do you

The one thing I’m fairly certain about tomorrow is that I’m going to go to bed not knowing much, and I suspect a fair amount of what I will know is going to be disappointing. I haven’t seen much polling, and any that I might have seen is probably fairly well invalidated by Buttigieg and Klobuchar dropping out and endorsing Biden in the last 24 hours. I was kind of hoping that Biden would announce Kamala Harris as his running mate this weekend; the rumors were flying around (and this would be one thing that would definitely cause me to move toward a full-throated endorsement of him) but nothing has come of it as of yet. I still intend to vote for Warren if it’s still possible when Indiana votes in fucking May, but I suspect by tomorrow the math for her gaining the nomination without convention shenanigans is going to be … ugly. I’d love to be wrong, but I don’t think I live in that country. And, honestly, I’d prefer to avoid convention shenanigans one way or another, even if it leads to someone I don’t really want getting the nomination on the first ballot. Hopefully somebody ends up locking up a majority. We’ll have a better idea of who that might be come Wednesday; if any candidate emerges from Super Tuesday with a sizable delegate lead, the Democratic proportional-allocation rules mean that a lead is going to be very difficult to eradicate.

Random, small anecdote, preserved here because sometimes I use my blog as an external memory card: 8th grade boys are not exactly well-known for being accepting when it comes to homosexuality, right? My current building is far ahead of the curve on that particular front for some reason but the f-word is still a go-to insult far more often than I want it to be and regardless of my personal attempts to stamp out its use at least when they’re around me. So I was fascinated last week to watch five or six of my boys during advisory period the other day, all clustered in a corner around one of them and working carefully at … brushing his hair. Like, trading off the brush and everything. I don’t get these kids sometimes; I work really hard at wiping out my own prejudices and internalized homophobia and I gotta admit I’d feel funny just randomly brushing some male friend’s hair. And here there are five or six of them just making a huge production of it, when ordinarily accidentally brushing up against each other is enough to get “You gay!” tossed around.

(No, I don’t think male barbers or hairstylists are gay. But I’m not a barber, and neither are any of these kids. The word “randomly” is kind of important in that sentence.)

It’s Super Tuesday!


I’ll not bury the lede: Sanders’ campaign is done.  It died in South Carolina.  You cannot be the Democratic nominee for President if you lose black voters 86-14.  It’s just not going to happen, under any circumstances.  I’ll refrain from speculating on why black voters are rejecting him so thoroughly; there are plenty of black writers out there who can provide their own assessment.  But you cannot win a Democratic primary if black people are only giving you twice as many votes, percentage-wise, as they gave Mitt Romney.

Now: that said, I’d prefer Bernie stay in the race for a while.  He’s got plenty of money (the man can fundraise like nobody’s business, that’s for sure) and I feel like Hillary still needs an opponent to her left as the campaign goes on.  He’ll win a couple of states today; Vermont certainly, and my understanding is that Massachusetts, Colorado and Minnesota are either tossups or leaning his way.  But Clinton will sweep the South, and the delegate math does not start looking better for Sanders as the election rolls on, and is going to become mathematically impossible very quickly even without the superdelegates.  Clinton’s lead spiked in South Carolina during the few days before the primary; if we see similar movement toward her across the Super Tuesday states, his road to the nomination may actually become functionally impossible today.

Which means, the Dem side mostly wrapped up, we sit back and watch in horror as the Republicans confirm every single bad thing I ever said about them as they declare an open fascist and racist as their nominee, which is also going to happen today.  I’ve talked about the “kill a puppy” test on this blog before, right?  Where you ask someone if <insert preferred candidate here> killed a puppy on live TV, would you still vote for them?

The way you determine whether you’re dealing with a sane individual is that the answer to this question is no, 100% of the time, no exceptions.  Drumpf has conclusively shown that, yes, he could kill a puppy on live TV and his followers would cheer him for it.  Furthermore, the Republican establishment would make noises about how such a thing Just Shouldn’t Be Done and then come around anyway.   Marco Rubio himself referred to Drumpf just the other day as “a lunatic trying to get ahold of nuclear weapons” but says he’ll vote for him if he’s the Republican nominee.(*)

Drumpf will not win a general election.  Hillary will crush him; so would Sanders.  America is not white enough any longer to elect this creature President.  It would be nice if our news media got off their asses and began describing him correctly; at this point any article about him that does not use the words “racist” and “fascist” is lying by omission.  This is how far gone the Republican party is:


Yeah.  Their previous Presidential nominee basically says “Hey, uh, the KKK is bad, okay?” and two prominent Republican commentators call him a liberal.

These people are soul-fucked.  It is time for the Republican party to die, folks, because any organization that produces people who mock condemning the Ku Klux Klan is too corrupt and evil to be tolerated by the rest of us.  Drumpf has exposed beyond any further chance of obfuscation or denial what the rest of us always knew about the GOP; that while their leaders may be businessmen and money people, their base is authoritarians, fascists and racists, all the way down.  Those of you who consider yourselves Republicans but don’t feel like you’re included in either of those categories should think very carefully about your behavior over the next seven months, because “I voted against Hitler in the primaries” is simply not a sufficient defense.  In 2020 nominate someone sane and make Hillary a one-termer.  You’ll survive for four years under Hillary Clinton.  But America dies the second Drumpf is elected.

(*) I’ve seen an extended version of that clip, and I’m actually considering removing this sentence, because I don’t think it’s completely clear that Rubio is referring to Drumpf and not, say, Sanders or Cruz or Clinton.  He does go on to specifically reference him a few sentences later, and doesn’t reference any other candidate at all, though, so it’s probably a sound inference but not 100%.