Four days after the 2014 midterms

There’s an excellent piece by Jamelle Bouie in Slate today, The Disunited States of America, about the midterm voters versus the general election voters. It’s longish, which means, sadly, few will finish the piece before they begin attacking it in the comments section. Which is too bad, because Bouie does a fine job explaining the natures of midterm voters and non-voters and how that difference has set us up for a gridlocked, dysfunctional Congress term after term. Basically, the proportion of older, white, male, well off, conservative voters is significantly higher in the off year (that is, midterm) elections, with everyone else piling in for the general. Which means that the presidents will likely remain Democrat over all, and the senate will slowly shift blue as conservative Republican senators elected in off year elections are beaten six years later as the GOP base gradually, well, dies off. Gradually at first anyway. Once they hit their eighties they disappear as a voting block. That is happening now, though it won’t start becoming noticeable in a big way, I imagine, in four years. That’s the thing about life expectancy, people don’t live much past it. However, the House of Representatives, gerrymandered all to hell, will stay red for a long time. Continue reading

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The day after the 2014 midterms

I hate to be a downer to all the panic stricken and paranoid out there, but there is a Democratic president, you’ll remember, and therefore not a damn crazy thing the GOP does will be made law. None of it. So relax. And the senate map in 2016 is worse for the GOP than this year was for the Demos, Demo turnout will be much higher. If we had kept the senate this year–and there wasn’t a chance of that, look at the map–nothing would get done because the GOP held the House. And now nothing will get done because the GOP holds both houses. Obama is a lame duck now and as always in a lame duck presidency nothing significant gets done legislatively the last two years. There will be a lot of speechifying by Republicans trying to outflank each other on the right, and a lot of executive orders coming out of the White House. Standard operating procedure anymore.

If anyone told you the Democrats could hold the Senate this year they were either deluded or lying. There was not a chance in hell of that happening. All you have to do is look at the map of states with senate races, and compare it to the map of states who gave their electoral votes to Romney. If they voted for Romney, it wasn’t too likely that the voters would pick one of Obama’s senate allies. And considering that so many Democratic voters can’t get off their asses in a midterm and bother to vote–though they are all over Facebook now, those people, shrieking–the odds against a Democratic candidate were that much longer. This is always the case in midterms. Older voters go to the polls, younger are too busy, apparently. White voters go the polls, other colors are too busy. Men go to the polls, more women are too busy. Older white males are the core of the GOP. You can’t blame them for voting for their party of choice. You should turn your ire against those that couldn’t be bothered. A few seats in battleground states, in Maryland, in Colorado, would have stayed blue, but Democrats are lazy voters. Continue reading

Progressive Tea Party

Just read another intellectual hyperbolic scree on Facebook against the news media, about how it’s always against the true Americans, how it always lies, how it is twisted in favor of the other side. Pure Tea Party anti-press paranoia. Only this came from the Left.  More and more the same paranoid, intolerant, self-delusional memes that  drive the right are infecting the left. I see this everyday from people I know on Facebook.

He wasn’t just condemning FoxNews…he was condemning all media. It made no sense, he was just yelling. But he got a long list of equally verbose and intelligent comments agreeing with and adding to his nonsense. It was like reading the comments on FoxNews.com or Yahoo News, but through the looking glass and spell checked.. I’d stepped into a hole and fallen up, and progressives were screaming just like the Tea Partiers scream, but backwards. Inside out. Continue reading