Sunday, November 30, 2008

Take a Hill pill

Tomorrow we'll likely hear the official announcement by Barack Obama that he's chosen Sen. Hillary Clinton to be the next Secretary of State.

There are already plenty of conservative pundits expressing their outrage at the very thought, and I'm even hearing occasional rumblings from the progressive blogosphere. Let me make just one suggestion:

Chill out.

Give it a chance, will ya's? Obama isn't even sitting in the Oval Office yet, and a lot of people are basically freaking out. Let's give the new administration the typical "100 Days" to settle in and grow into their own leadership style. If, after three-and-some months things ain't going exactly as you please, then feel free to complain, whine, bitch, and moan to your heart's content.

After eight years of disastrous leadership, Obama deserves a few months leeway before you guys start your drum roll. At this moment in history, Barack Obama has the unique opportunity to step up and become one of America's greatest leaders, and he should get the chance to do so.

So, just chill.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Oh, and an aside to Rupert Murdoch: if you hate Bill O'Reilly so frickin' much, then fire his sorry ass!

Otherwise, you're just another chickenshit hypocrite who desperately wants to be loved by the public. Same goes for Fox News chief Roger Ailes. I call bullshit on the two of you. You both reek from the stink of hypocrisy, caused by the phony "news" network you shamelessly claim to be "fair and balanced". If you crave respect, how about earning some, rather than wistfully hoping for it?

Or, better yet Rupert, how about you go back to Australia and screw up that country for a change? What did we ever do to deserve you anyway?

Friday, November 28, 2008

Black Friday

Go shopping and help the economy!

And enjoy a little classic Steely Dan:



(Where did Colin McEnroe learn to play guitar like that? LOL!)

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving! I'm thankful for a great many things this year, including the following:

We avoided four more years of Bush!

We sent a new guy to Congress from Connecticut


My wife and I are still employed and have health insurance

Sarah Palin, Sarah Palin, Sarah Palin!


The fact that Barack Obama already seems saner than the last guy

(I just updated this post to include this photo of the Obama family volunteering earlier today)

All my friends and fellow bloggers, who made this year so much fun!

Kirby, who started blogging again!

Spending a lot of time sailing despite a very hectic year


The replacement windows we installed this year, saving precious fuel oil

My new digital camera, which shoots remarkably good video (see below)

These birds, who chowed down on a suet block yesterday:



And most of all, for the first time in many years, I'm thankful for feeling HOPEFUL for the coming year!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Can they do NOTHING right?

Sometimes I really think they're just fucking with our heads!

From CNN.com:
WHITE HOUSE (CNN) - Whoops! A picture of a Christmas tree is not the first thing you would expect to see on an invitation to an event celebrating Hanukkah, but that is exactly what recipients of invitations to this year's White House Hanukkah reception initially got in the mail.
Shorter White House version: "Merry Christmas, Senator Lieberman!"
The invitation sent to American Jewish leaders on behalf of the President and First Lady, requesting "the pleasure of your company at a Hanukkah reception," bore an image of a Clydesdale horse drawn cart, carrying the White House Christmas tree, with a Christmas wreath-adorned White House in the background.
In related news, another card with a team of Budweiser Clydesdales pulling a sled with a Christmas tree and an ice-cold keg of Bud upon it was sent to the headquarters of Alcoholics Anonymous.
Mrs. Bush's press secretary, Sally McDonough, attributed the snafu to a "staff mistake" in not printing separate cards for the different White House holiday events, as has been the custom in years past. "Mrs. Bush is apologetic, It is just something that fell through the cracks," she said, referring to the role of the First Lady's office in sending out the invitations.

The card as originally intended featured a menorah given to the White House during Harry Truman's presidency. That mailing was to have gone out today, according to Mrs. McDonough.
Sadly, the cards featuring the menorah was sent to over 1200 Islamic Mosques in America, along with the message "Le chaim, bitches!" inscribed upon them in gold lettering.

The White House, when informed of the error, reportedly responded with "oopsie!", and promptly pulled the curtains shut.

Refuting the "Obama is a Progressive" meme

Ever since he emerged as a possible favorite for the Democratic nomination, right-wing pundits have been trying to paint Barack Obama as an "unrepentant liberal", a "wild-eyed progressive", and even a "leftist with Marxist leanings".

I'm paraphrasing here, but this is essentially what the disparate and desperate conservative noise-machine has been proclaiming loudly and endlessly throughout the campaign. In the three weeks since Obama won the election, the pundits have been closely watching his staffing choices and projected cabinet nominations for any hint of an unreasonably liberal slant.

And you know what's been happening? Obama is largely proposing centrist choices for his cabinet. He even wants to keep Robert Gates as Sec. of Defense, a Bush appointee who isn't even the slightest bit Marxist as far as I can see. Although you never can tell; those dirty Commies are quite gifted at hiding their true leanings, sometimes for decades if you believe the more radical right-wing talkers!

As Jane Hamsher (the Godmother of this blog) discusses in the video below from Rachel Maddow's show, this sort of thing is effectively putting the "Obama = Progressive" meme to rest. The only people more disappointed than the right-wingers in this matter are the true Progressives, who are somewhat guilty of projection in trying to shape Barack into their ideal Progressive leader; but who in reality happens to be very much a centrist Democrat.

The first couple minutes of the video Rachel spends discussing the John Brennan controversy that the liberal blogosphere successfully affected. I love the way she introduces Jane!

And a note to Rachel Maddow: yes, "netroots" IS a word, inasmuch as "blogosphere" is a word.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Will Dan Malloy run?

The race for the Democratic nomination for governor got a little more exciting last weekend when Sec. of State Susan Bysiewicz pretty much alluded to the likelihood that she'll probably throw her hat into the ring. In addition to outgoing Speaker Jim Amann, who is already running, and the possible inclusion of Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, it might be a somewhat crowded field.

Enter Stamford Mayor Dan Malloy.

Back in August on the night of Jim Himes's primary victory over "ol' what's-'er-name?", I interviewed Dan Malloy about his possible run for governor. Here's what he told me:



So Dan...you said it takes two years for a Democrat to run, and it's right before Thanksgiving. How'd you like to give your ol' buddy Connecticut Bob an early Christmas gift?

A "scoop" makes the ideal present for a blogger!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Seemed like a no-brainer to me

Today, Democrats in the State House torpedoed a bill pushed by Gov. Rell and the Republicans that would require beverage distributors to turn in unclaimed can and bottle deposits to the state. Previously, the recycling law contained a loophole where the distributors were allowed to keep the unclaimed deposits.

From ConnPolitics.com:
The Governor has been trying to squeeze every nickel and dime. She wants to seize the unclaimed deposits left behind when people don’t bring back bottles and cans.

“It’s about…$24 million in a full year,” Gov. Rell said. “You know, we need the revenue to help balance this budget.”

But the industry disputes those figures and says they need the money to run these recycling centers, they’re fighting hard against the proposal and it appears dead for now.
OK, so this seemed like a good way to help meet our state's projected $300 million budget shortfall, to the tune of nearly 10%. I was actually surprised that the state didn't already get the leftover deposits, and that every empty beer can I crushed against my forehead for the last two decades like John Belushi in "Animal House" was another nickel in the pocket of those guys; who BTW seem to have NO problem raising the price of a six-pack every single year!

So why do they get to keep the money that technically should go to the state, like it does in several other deposit-law states?

Maybe it's time to fix that law.

Last on my list

The very last thing on my list of important things the President-elect should be doing right now is worrying about attending church.

However, as noted by Attaturk at FDL, this is apparently a big deal to Politico and the hysterical handwringers who operate the Drudge Report.

From Politico:
"President-elect Barack Obama has yet to attend church services since winning the White House earlier this month, a departure from the example of his two immediate predecessors."
OMG!!! The world is going to spin right off its axis if we don't bundle Barack Obama off to a suitably acceptable church immediately! What can he possibly be doing that's more important than taking time to worship the Lord?

Well, I think he's putting together a transition team and selecting cabinet members who will be crucial in repairing the myriad problems left by the outgoing lame dork president; who, as we all know, is an active church-goer and remarkably shitty leader. I'd rather have Obama worry about that right now than waste time in a church. God will be just fine without his worship for a few weeks.

Plus, the Republican shillsters seem to think taking care of your health is nearly on par with Satan worship! More from Politico:
"On the three Sundays since his election, Obama has instead used his free time to get in workouts at a Chicago gym."
Jesus help us! The world's obviously gonna end any minute now, because Obama is working out instead of humbling himself before (let's face it) the television cameras and the media. Of course, a good workout helps not only your physical health, but also releases endorphins and has a psychologically calming effect that will help the president-elect make better decisions. Maybe if George Bush spent a little less time sweating in a church and more in a gym, he might not have made such awful decisions. (No, I'm just kidding...there's no way George Bush could have made anything BUT awful decisions!)

And, although he doesn't need to explain his actions to anyone, Obama's people offer up a reasonable explanation about the situation:
"Asked about the president-elect's decision to not attend church, a transition aide noted that the Obamas valued their faith experience in Chicago but were concerned about the impact their large retinue may have on other parishioners.

"Because they have a great deal of respect for places of worship, they do not want to draw unwelcome or inappropriate attention to a church not used to the attention their attendance would draw," said the aide."
That's fine with me. It should be fine with everyone. It really sucks that a person's religious beliefs needs to be such a public matter and, more to the point, a political issue.

In an age where politicians are frequently hypocrites and liars, who often use the idea of religion as a cover for their awful policies, and who make it a point to end every single speech with "god bless you and god bless America", I happen to find it somewhat comforting that our president-elect isn't exhibiting the same behavior.

I'm sure this will lose him some support from the ultra-religious fundies (not that there were going to bat for him anyway!); but ultimately, he will stand as proof that we CAN successfully keep church and state separated, as guaranteed by the Constitution. He should be allowed to decide IF and WHEN to attend church.

And a note to the rabid GOPers out there: you got him wearing that flag pin now. Isn't that enough for you guys?

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Let's Put Obama on the Couch


When I first heard that Obama had met with Hillary about the SoS job, I figured it was a leak from her side to boost her negotiating status in the Senate on health care. She clearly had not counted on Ted Kennedy pushing back when she assumed the health care mantel -- don't count him out yet.

Obamaland cannot control leaks anymore. FBI background checkers talk to neighbors, co-workers and friends, and they have no reason to keep quiet because that's how Obamaland works.

At this point, who am I to argue with Obama? We have wondered what was up with the Obama camp earlier in the campaign, and he pulled it off in grand style. But, Bob Woodward thinks "they're smoking something" (Chris Matthews Show 11/23).

And Harvard Business Review columnist Michael Watkins nails the four points that have been in my mind: influence, incentives, baggage part 1 and baggage part 2.

Yet, today, the NY Times tells us:
By this past Thursday, when Mr. Obama reassured Mrs. Clinton that she would have direct access to him and could select her own staff as secretary of state, the wooing was complete.
I doubt this type of inside story is coming out of Chicago.

Is this a brilliant move or Obamaland's first catastrophic move?

(and, many thanks, Bob, for letting me back in the blogosphere!)

Friday, November 21, 2008

Would Lieberman have helped McCain's ticket?

Would Joe Lieberman have been that big a help to John McCain if he was the VP choice?

From Politico.com:
Top advisers to President-elect Barack Obama’s presidential campaign said Thursday that Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman (I-Conn.) would have been a powerful boost to the Republican ticket.

During a conference on the 2008 election hosted by Politico and the University of Southern California, Obama-Biden deputy campaign manager Steve Hildebrand said choosing the renegade senator as his running mate would have helped McCain undermine Obama’s claim to represent a new kind of politics.
OK, I dunno if I'd go anywhere near that far.

It's true that Joe Lieberman would have possible been a small help to McCain's campaign, but it would be much more of a he ain't Sarah Palin vibe, rather than a Lieberman represents the same kind of politics as Barack Obama thing.

Because he doesn't. Joe Lieberman has made the last six years all about supporting the same failed policies that George Bush made famous, and nobody thinks that John McCain would have hesitated to continue his presidency along the same path.
“I think if he would’ve picked Lieberman or another Democrat, he would’ve taken away an important trademark of Barack’s,” Hildebrand said, explaining that he believed the Republican base would have accepted a Lieberman nomination. “I think the convention would’ve been just fine.”
Couple of things suggest that Hildebrand is talking out his ass here. First, calling Lieberman a "Democrat" is a huge misnomer, at least as far as "pre-November-4th" thinking goes. Joe Lieberman, the great Democrat, couldn't even bring himself to VOTE in the Connecticut primary back in February!

Second, the GOP base was the main reason Lieberman wasn't selected to be the VP nominee. I'd bet dollars to donuts that John McCain was drooling in anticipation of the prospect of having someone like Joe Lieberman join him on the ticket. Lieberman had a presumed (though faulty) "bipartisan" appeal, he's much more measured in his public speaking than McCain, and he could bring a lot of pro-GOP, pro-Iraq, pro-bomb Iran experience to the ticket.

Plus, Joe Lieberman hadn't run against John McCain in the primaries. For some reason I have a feeling that McCain possesses a very fragile ego, and I think it would have galled him to share his ticket with someone who might have said negative things about him during their campaign. Joe Lieberman has never said an unkind word about McCain.

But the Republican base still perceived Joe as a wild-eyed, baby-killing, Eastern establishment liberal, and nothing could dissuade them from that notion. I'd be surprised if McCain didn't lobby long and hard for Joe, but the ultimate powers that be (the Republican money men) seemed to distrust Lieberman and refused to give him their blessing. So that left McCain scrambling to find a replacement for his BFF Joe.

Which is where Sarah came from. She was obviously a compromise choice, decided upon due to her solid GOP credentials, the fact that she never ran against McCain, and an ill-conceived idea that she'd appeal to disgruntled Hillary supporters. And for a good two weeks after the Republican convention, she seemed to be the miracle that McCain was looking for. Of course, once the world learned that even though the lights were on, nobody was home behind Palin's eyes, and the honeymoon was over.

What the Republicans didn't count on was how awful a candidate she really turned out to be. Dozens of high profile long-time GOP supporters not only abandoned the ticket, but they went public in support of Obama-Biden. And the primary reason they gave was because of John McCain's selection of Sarah Palin for VP.
Republican panelists defended the nomination of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, though they acknowledged that she had not accomplished all the goals the McCain camp hoped she would.

“Certainly our hope with Gov. Palin, going forward, was that there would be a connection to more moderate voters,” said Mike DuHaime, who served as the McCain campaign’s political director.
In their attempt to appeal to moderates, they lost a big chunk of their conservative base. And considering Palin's no-kidding ultra-conservative politics, it looks like they vastly misread the effect she'd have on the very moderates they were trying to persuade.

The reason McCain lost is because the GOP is a party in disarray, that lost their way and was taken over by religious extremists and the ultra-conservative. And if they don't let sanity prevail and somehow learn to become more moderate, they'll continue to lose.

And nothing Joe Lieberman could have done, even if he was their VP candidate, would have made any difference.

This is why I hope Sarah Palin never goes away

Yesterday, to celebrate the spirit of Thanksgiving, Gov. Sarah Palin visited a turkey abattoir to perform the annual sham of "pardoning" a filthy bird to save it from certain death.

This occurred while other turkeys are having their throats cut and being drained of blood right behind the governor!



The governor babbles cheerfully with the reporter while, not fifteen feet behind her, turkey after turkey are being loaded head down into a metal funnel and a blood-splattered worker cuts their throats, drains them of their blood, and stares creepily at Sarah while she's being interviewed.

This is why I love Sarah "the Snow Flake" Palin and hope she never goes away. She possesses absolutely zero sense of irony. And as her interview with the fake Nicolas Sarkozy tells us, she can be amazingly unflappable even during very uncomfortable moments. The former Miss Wasilla has retained her beauty queen's imperturbable affect, even while struggling with difficult questions like being asked to name a single newspaper she reads regularly. ("I'll get back to ya on that!")

And I think the camera crew deserves major props in setting up that shot. As a videographer I know the importance of taking advantage of a situation. Either the field producer or the reporter noticed the beheadings going on and saw the potential of it, so they said something like, "OK governor, please stand here; the light is perfect for your complexion! Yes, right there please. Let me just move the camera a bit to get the background." When Palin did exactly what they suggested, I'm sure they couldn't believe their luck!

I don't care how professional a video crew may be; when they see an opportunity like that, they all think the same thing:

"10,000,000 hits on Youtube!"

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Department of Not Too Early

Here is an interesting early analysis of 2010 Senate seats.

CT is considered "potentially competitive" -- here's the scoop from them on Dodd:
I struggled mightily with this one. After all, Connecticut is a solidly blue state, and the GOP’s best shot, Governor Jodi Rell, is likely not running. But it is hard to ignore the Countrywide scandal hovering over his head, and it is likewise hard to ignore his upside-down 43-46 approval rating. If the GOP can find a credible candidate – no small task – it could make a race out of this.
Would Shays entertain a run?

Survivor Corps helps injured vets cope

This is a very good way to help repay our veterans for their service, and also help people worldwide who have injuries from wars.

Survivor Corps launched "Operation Survivor" in 2008 to help American service members returning home from war. This program enables these brave men and women to overcome the debilitating effects of trauma and to reintegrate into their families and communities.



Please visit the Survivor Corps: Operation Survivor website and see how you can help.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Welcome Jim Himes to the Democratic Team

This is a really great picture. It shows the Connecticut Congressional Delegation with a theoretical Republican count of nearly ZERO!

From L to R: Chris Murphy, Joe Courtney, Rosa DeLauro, Jim Himes, Joe Lieberman, Chris Dodd, and a partially obscured John Larson. This is Jim's first photo with the rest of Connecticut's elected officials since November 4th.

Jim talked about Joe Lieberman briefly during last week's chat over at Fire Dog Lake, and here's what he had to say:
"As far as I know, Senator Lieberman did not endorse Shays over me. I do suspect that was tactical, and not a result of confusion over whom to support. I don't think I will be called upon to opine on Senator Lieberman's future, but I, like you, am really dismayed that he worked so hard for Republicans at THIS moment in history. Last week, the country was presented with radically divergent paths, and I don't think Senator Lieberman backed the right one. There have to be consequences for that. I'll note, though, that the American people expect all of us to get quickly onto the business of stabilizing the economy, withdrawing from Iraq, and restoring the basic competency of government, and will have limited (not zero, but limited) patience for partisan payback."
This was from before the Senate's "Lieberman Capitulation" (I can't think of anything else to call it) and it shows how well he balances the need to look forward while being aware of what just transpired.

I get the feeling Jim will show himself to be a very competent legislator.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

While your teeth are clenched.....

...remember that with Franken and Begich ahead and one more seat to go in Georgia, the number 60 is closer than ever.

And, while many of us have questioned Obama's strategy on various things in the past, he did win the primaries and the election, so maybe he knows something that we don't. Maybe he is the one person with something over on LIEberman.

Otherwise, I think Joey must have pictures of many D Senators in very compromising positions. Let's hear it for the People's Republic of Vermont! Lahey and Saunders put their vote on our side.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++

UPDATE: (Bob) Video of Ned Lamont discussing the vote on MSNBC tonight.

Business as usual

No surprise here. The Senate voted overwhelmingly to keep Joe Lieberman as chairman of the Homeland Security Committee.

Well, at least we had two full weeks to feel good about ourselves. Now it's back to business as usual in the Senate.

I have no desire to express outrage or disappointment. This is the way things are, and 220 years of Senate tradition doesn't change overnight.

Perseverance is key. Keep plugging away. We'll win some, we'll lose some others; yet, we can always strive to perfect a government that works for the people, rather than for themselves.

Congratulations are owed to Senator Lieberman. He plays the game better than anyone alive.

(yes, as A.C.R. pointed out, the headline said "ucual". Blogger doesn't have the auto spellchecker feature turned on for the title field apparently)

Transgender Remembrance set for Thursday

CONNECTICUT’S TRANSGENDER DAY OF REMEMBRANCE SET FOR NOVEMBER 20, 2008

Posted by request. For additional info: http://www.ntac.org/

Year called "pivotal" for transgender people

HARTFORD, Connecticut, November 17, 2008 – On Thursday, November 20th, Ct TransAdvocacy Coalition and MCC/Hartford will observe Connecticut’s 7th Annual Transgender Day of Remembrance with a vigil walk at 5:15 PM from First Presbyterian Church (136 Capitol Ave, Hartford) to the steps of the Ct State Capitol. There will be a Rally and Reading of Names on the Capitol Steps from 5:30 to 6:15 p.m. followed by the Transgender DOR Program at 7 PM inside the MCC/Hartford Church (155 Wyllys Street). This year we will be remembering twenty-nine individuals murdered due to anti-transgender violence over the previous twelve months. All events are open to the public.

This year the Transgender Day of Remembrance is particularly important here in Connecticut, for as we achieved full Marriage Equality for same-sex couples we are still actively working to secure basic human rights for the transgender community within Connecticut’s non-discrimination statutes. Our motto this year is Marriage Equality in ’08 ~ Transgender Equality in ’09. The transgender community suffers from severe discrimination of their basic human rights in areas such as employment, housing and healthcare; and sadly as the Transgender Day of Remembrance reminds all of us, many in the transgender community suffer the ultimate forms of discrimination and that is the hate crimes, violence and murders that are inflicted upon far too many in our community ~ simply for being different.

The Transgender Day of Remembrance was set aside to memorialize those who were killed due to anti-transgender hatred or prejudice. The event is held in November to honor Rita Hester, whose murder on November 28th, 1998, was a primary impetus behind the "Remembering Our Dead" web project and a San Francisco candlelight vigil in 1999. Rita Hester’s murder — like most anti-transgender murder cases — has yet to be solved. Such Transphobic hate crimes are not just against transgender people, but anyone who transgresses the so-called acceptable masculine/feminine norms of our society. These could be your children, your brothers, your sisters, your parents, your friends, your co-workers, your neighbors, you!

Tragic murders of those individuals who visibly transgress the gender binaries of male/female [Transgender and gender non-conforming] are occurring nationally at a rate of over one person a month. And each year the number of these murders is increasing, with very few being solved most sensationalized by the press and many ignored by the police or plea-bargained by the prosecutor. And each murder is horrific in nature, with many against our youth of color.

Thursday, November 20, 2008
5:15 PM Gathering at First Presbyterian Church, 136 Capitol Ave, Hartford
Vigil Walk from First Presbyterian Church to the State Capitol
5:30 PM Rally at the State Capitol
7:00 PM Transgender DOR Program at MCC Hartford, 155 Wyllys Street, Hartford

Monday, November 17, 2008

Obama selects Clinton for Sec. of State

President-Elect Barack Obama stunned the political establishment today by tapping Clinton to be Secretary of State.

George Clinton, that is! Parliament is in session!

Say it loud! Say it proud! We want the funk!



(Whenever I can't come up with anything new
to blog about, there's always "the funk"!)

Leave Lieberman Alone!

Sen. Chris Dodd, (D-CT) in defense of Joe Lieberman

Article below is reposted from FireDogLake:

This is it Democrats, the final day for all of us to stand up on behalf of our party and remind our senators of the change we just ordered. Joe Lieberman fought change with every tool in his box. It's time we ratchet up our voice of encouragement.

Here's how.

Join over 30,000 others and sign the Say No to Joe letter, which will be online until Tuesday morning.

Call your senators and call members of the Steering and Outreach Committee listed below:

Debbie Stabenow, Michigan - Chairwoman (202) 224-4822
Harry Reid, Nevada (202) 224-3542
John Kerry, Massachusetts (202) 224-2742
Daniel Inouye, Hawaii (202) 224-3934
Robert Byrd, West Virginia (202) 224-3954
Edward Kennedy, Massachusetts (202) 224-4543
Joe Biden, Delaware (202) 224-5042
Patrick Leahy, Vermont (202) 224-4242
Chris Dodd, Connecticut (202) 224-2823
Tom Harkin, Iowa (202) 224-3254
Max Baucus, Montana (202) 224-2651
Richard Durbin, Illinois (202) 224-2152
Kent Conrad, North Dakota (202) 224-2043
Carl Levin, Michigan (202) 224-6221
Herbert Kohl, Wisconsin (202) 224-5653
Barbara Boxer, California (202) 224-3553
Hillary Clinton, New York (202) 224-4451
Jeff Bingaman, New Mexico (202) 224-5521
Mark Pryor, Arkansas (202) 224-2353

Let the committee members know your letter will be delivered on Tuesday.

Send this information to anyone who wants a party with a touch of integrity behind their promise of change.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Sunday Night Music Club V

Here's another installment of my very intermittent Sunday Night Music Club series. But this one is very appropriate to the situation involving the Senate Steering and Outreach Committee's vote this week.

Dedicated to Sen. Joe Lieberman, this Rollins Band video sums up my feelings quite succinctly.
Nobody, Lieberman assured voters in 2006, wanted to bring the troops home more than him. The month after his election, he called for an immediate increase of 15,000-30,000 troops.



I saw the Rollins Band perform this song at Woodstock '94. It was a rainy, muddy, thrilling experience. Henry's raw performance in the dismal weather was nothing short of overwhelming.

Sen. Dorgan considers Lieberman unacceptable

Via DailyKos
Senator Byron Dorgan from North Dakota pretty much came out against Lieberman keeping his chairmanship of Homeland Security this morning on Fox News Sunday:


"As a chairman of one of our significant committees in the Senate, not just going off and supporting a presidential candidate of the other side but also criticizing the candidate on our side, and also involving himself in a couple of senate races on the other side. The question is, is that acceptable? The answer is no."
More and more senators are expressing their displeasure at Joe Lieberman's actions over the last year, even though some of them are couching their reasons in very careful language so as not to offend their Senate colleagues. But they are basically letting the voters know how they feel.

Which is much better than what our own Sen. Chris Dodd has been saying about his "friend" Joe Lieberman. Dodd is adamant that Lieberman be allowed to keep his Homeland Security Chair, even though many local Democrats are calling for his ouster. Chris Dodd fails to understand that we elected him to make decisions based on harsh realities, not for personal reasons. Joe Lieberman did everything he possibly could to insult and disparage our President-Elect, and he tried to put a clearly dangerous ticket in power. We're suddenly supposed to forgive him?

Let me make this clear: I don't care one little bit if Joe Lieberman is Chris Dodd's "friend". In fact, I generally detest it when senators talk about what "great friends" they all are. All too often, when politicians make decisions based on personal loyalties, the people suffer for it.

Chris, if you want to pal around with Joe, by all means take him and Haddasah out to dinner at a nice restaurant sometime, your treat. Go bowling with him on weekends. Join the Elks Club together.

But please, don't put him in charge of the most powerful committee in the Senate because you're "friends". If you want a friend Chris, get a goddamned dog.

But please make your decisions based on the realities involved. How many times does Joe have to betray you and our party before you will speak against him?

Sunday morning roundup

Here's a few things I'll update this morning:

* Lieberman Must Go, Vol. 942 *
"Appointing someone to a major post who led the opposition to everything we are fighting for is not 'change we can believe in'".

- Sen. Bernie Sanders



* Begich's Lead Grows *

In Alaska's Senate race, Democrat Mark Begich has increased his lead over convicted felon Ted Stevens by 1,022 votes. The last ballots should be counted by the close of business Tuesday, and if Begich can increase his lead by another 500 or so votes, he'll breach the .5 percent mark in his lead, and that would eliminate the automatic state-sponsored recount.

If Stevens decides he wants a recount anyway, he'll have to pay for it.

Or he'll get one of his cronies to spring for it.

* Prop 8 Protests across the nation *

Andrew Sullivan has reports from marches around the country; click on the link and scroll down to "Saturday, November 15, 2008" to see dozens of reports of the various protests, with photos.

Here in Connecticut, the New Haven Register reports that hundreds of protesters gathered on the Green, and held up signs that read, “No to H8.” I haven't found any photos online yet.

* Larson Likely to Become House Caucus Chief *

According to the Hartford Courant, with Illinois Congressman Rahm Emanuel slated to ascend to the White House as Chief of Staff, it's basically a foregone conclusion that First District Rep. John Larson will take over the chairmanship of the Democratic caucus in the House. He would be the fourth-most-powerful person in House leadership, three rungs under Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

How we're going to get screwed

It's like The $20,000 Pyramid; here are your clues:

- "Tuesday."

- "Vote on Lieberman's position in the new Congress."

- "Secret ballot."

"Things that will end up pissing us off!"

Ding-ding-ding-ding!

This is how we're going to get screwed:

The Democratic Senate Steering and Outreach Committee will meet on Tuesday to decide whether to strip Joe Lieberman of his chairmanship of the Homeland Security Committee. They will cast their votes by a secret ballot, and the majority will decide on this issue.

To date, the only senator on the Steering Committee to speak publicly in support of removing Lieberman is Vermont Sen. Pat Leahy. Even Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has been making conciliatory statements in regards to Joe Lieberman.

This seems to be trending towards a typically cowardly Democratic capitulation, which is something I'd hoped we were done with now that our party is undeniably in full control. Apparently not.

The secret ballot is what pisses me off the most. If a majority of the Steering Committee Democrats choose to act in this outrageous way, we won't even know WHO to blame for it! It's this lack of accountability that annoys me. I always thought it would be different when the Democrats were in charge, but no; not if they vote in secret to forgive Lieberman for his many, many betrayals.

There's always an outside chance that the Steering Committee will act appropriately, in both punishing Lieberman for his actions, and sending a message that this kind of betrayal will not be tolerated by the party.

It could happen. But if I was betting on it, I'd want 3-1 odds in my favor. The risk is too big to go even money on this thing.

The sad reality facing us is that we'll likely still have Joe Lieberman to kick around for quite some time. As much fun as it would be, I worry about the damage that he'll continue to get away with should he remain.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Sen. Pat Leahy calls for Joe's removal

Earlier today, Sen. Pat Leahy (D-VT) became the first senator to go on the record calling for Joe Lieberman to be dismissed as chairman of the Homeland Security Committee.

Here's the audio of Sen. Leahy's interview on Vermont Public Radio:








Bravo to Senator Leahy for acting like a proud Democrat, for standing up for what's right, and for being a hell of a kicker for the NY Jets.

UPDATE: the other Vermont senator, Bernie Sanders, has joined the Green Mountain movement to dump Joe. Well done, sir!

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

CORRECTION: Apparently Sen. Pat Leahy never played for the New York Jets, and his correct photo is below:

We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused.

(...and the Jets continue to suck even though they beat the Patriots in OT last night.)

Why Joe Must Go (again)

I commented upon Scarce's article about Rachel Maddow, the "Smartest Woman on TV", and decided to expand my reasoning here.

The Senate Democrats are setting themselves up for failure and a resultant loss of seats in 2010 if they think by keeping Lieberman they'll get anything done they wouldn't have if they fired him from his Chair.

Here's what I see happening:

* They forgive and forget Joe's actions and let him stay.
* The Democrats somehow reach 60 seats with Joe included.
* Joe votes to torpedo any useful legislation by the Senate.
* Public opinion drops into the low-single digits.
* Every GOPer running for Senate wins in 2010.
* The 111th Congress becomes a sad footnote to the history of Democratic failure.
* Lieberman begins enthusiastically campaigning for Palin2012 starting on November 3rd, 2010.

You don't need a crystal ball to see how it's gonna go.

OK, now here's a different scenario that might happen if the Democrats have any (metaphorical) balls:

* The Democrats strip Joe of his chair and his seniority.
* Joe quits the Democratic caucus, and either goes GOP or retires and lets Rell appoint a GOPer replacement; it doesn't matter.
* The Democrats don't have enough seats to break the endless string of Republican filibusters that obstruct any useful legislation.
* Public opinion of the Republicans drops to zero as the world sees through their partisan chicanery and realizes they are bull-headed obstructionists.
* In 2010, every single Democrat running for Senate wins.
* We end up with a 60+ majority in the Senate and the GOP is irretrievably damaged.
* In 2012, Barack Obama wins on the strength of all the positive change that occurred during the 112th Congress as a result of the strong Democratic Senate.

I dunno about you, but I like the latter scenario better.

Nationwide protest against Prop 8

There will be a minute of silence at 2PM Saturday as part of an anti-Proposition 8 protest at locations across the nation.

Proposition 8 is the California voter initiative that legitimizes bigotry in their state's constitution. A small, well-funded special interest group (the Mormons spent $20 million to outlaw same-sex marriage) successfully hoodwinked a slight majority of voters into passing the abominable law, while most people surveyed prior to the election indicated they were against it.

This is one of the main reasons why it was so important to defeat the Constitutional Convention here in Connecticut, which would have been used by the special interests to enact similar ballot initiatives. Obviously our efforts to educate the voters and defeat the question were more effective than those used in California. And the fact that Question 2 about letting 17-year olds vote in primaries if they attain the age of 18 by the November election DID pass shows that our voter education efforts were successful, since voters had to make the conscious decision to vote NO on 1 and YES on 2.



Here's the info on the local events scheduled for tomorrow:
Protests will take place in Hartford and New Haven this Saturday against Proposition 8, which repeals marriage for same-sex couples in California.

Part of the "Fight the H8 Campaign", simultaneous, coordinated protests will take place at Hartford and New Haven City Halls and at city halls nationwide on November 15 at 1:30PM Eastern time.

At 2:00PM EST, the nation will observe one minute of silence to acknowledge the extinguishment of the freedom to marry in California.

"We applaud the Connecticut Supreme Court ruling banning discrimination in marriage, but we are outraged that the basic human right to marry was up for popular vote in California," said Frank O'Gorman, director of People of Faith CT. "On November 15, national silence in the face of legalized bigotry will be history," he continued.
The passage of Prop 8 in California is indeed one of the few low points on a day that was filled with victory and hope for our nation. The United States took a giant step forward towards a better tomorrow, while California slipped backwards into the days of bigotry and religious discrimination.

Really, this IS the 21st century after all. Shouldn't we, as a nation, finally get over the idea of discrimination being written into the laws of our land? Isn't it time that we grow up as a society and embrace the ideas of freedom that our nation truly represents?

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Begich takes lead in Alaska race

With about a thousandth of the speed of the Iditarod Sled Race, the counting of the ballots goes on in Alaska. And Mark Begich has taken a growing lead over convicted felon Sen. Ted Stevens, which stands at about 800 votes as of early today.

The ballots being counted are mostly early and absentee ballots, which are expected to lean Democratic. As more of them get counted, Begich's lead will likely increase.

The fear, of course, is that the ballots would have been "lost in shipment" or "eaten by the sled dogs", but fortunately that doesn't appear to be the case. There are about 30,000 more ballots to be counted as of late yesterday.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Marriage equality becomes a reality today

CT Blogger posted this video from earlier today, when the first same-sex couples in the state were allowed to be married. It's a great day to celebrate the triumph of equality over the forces of discrimination.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

A response to the Lieberman apologists

Two videos by Brave New Films which manage to scratch the surface of Joe Lieberman's betrayal of the Democratic party. He had no problem with insulting and degrading the Democrats, especially Barack Obama, and he campaigned long and desperately for John McCain, even speaking at the Republican National Convention in an attempt to defeat the Democrats.

He is perfectly welcome to caucus with the Democrats if he wishes, but he absolutely must be stripped of his seniority and his chairmanship of the Homeland Security Committee. This is far too critical a position for somebody who holds such a deep grudge against his former party.



NY Times profiles Jim Himes

(Credit: Hiroko Masuike for The New York Times)

Here's a great article in the Times (h/t to Oldswede) that profiles Jim Himes and his recent victory. It's a good introduction to Jim for those who don't know a lot about him, and there were even a few things I hadn't known.

Like this:
Mr. Carlson warned that Mr. Himes could turn out to surprise people, not only in his district but in Washington. There was that time, he said, a winter or two ago, when Mr. Himes fell through thin ice while skating. But he had two screwdrivers in his pocket to pull himself up — just in case.

“In the classic Jim way, he was completely prepared,” Mr. Carlson said. “He’s confident, resourceful, but pushing the edge. He loves to push the edge.”
OK, I'll admit that's a little bit weird. I'm not questioning Jim's judgment, but if I thought the ice would be thin enough that I brought two screwdrivers with me in case I had to claw my way out of the cold water, I'd probably wait a few days for the weather to turn colder. He must have REALLY wanted to skate that day!

When Jim goes to D.C. as a freshman Congressman during a financial crisis, he'll certainly be skating on thin ice for a while. But fortunately for us, Jim is armed with the right tools to help Congress claw its way out of the economic mess we're in.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Here they are, all in one place

It seems there are still plenty of Lieberman apologists out there.

Harry Reid can be temporarily excused because he's trying to keep his options open in case lightning strikes and we hit that magical number "59" in the Senate and need Joe to caucus with us to reach a super-majority.

Not that anyone who watches the actions of Joe Lieberman with a cold eye towards reality would doubt that the Democrats could count on him to stand with them in anything really important, such as turning over the security responsibilities of the Iraq war to the Iraqi government.

So his potential "vote" means essentially shit, except in a theoretical way; like the way time supposedly slows down as you approach the speed of light. I'm sure it does, but that doesn't mean I'll only age 10 minutes on a flight from Newark to California. I'll still have to attempt to sleep in an awful coach airline seat for five hours; which as everyone knows, IS a theoretical impossibility.

But anyway, in case anyone out there still has difficulty understanding why we dislike Joe Lieberman so much, there is a list that this blog's godmother, Jane Hamsher over at FireDogLake (link), has compiled in a much more coherent and understandable way than I ever could.

Although, Harry Reid is severely trying my patience when he says ridiculous things like, "Joe Lieberman is not some right-wing nutcase...Joe Lieberman is one of the most progressive people ever to come from the state of Connecticut."

Obviously Harry Reid has never met anyone else from Connecticut!

........................................................................

And now for something completely different...

"SUPER MYSTERY BONUS FEATURE!"

I'm starting a new attraction here at ConnecticutBob.com, where I'll include a surprise "Super Mystery Bonus Feature" at the end of some articles. These will consist of surprise videos, images, quotes, observations, cartoons, and other stuff that has absolutely nothing to do with the article but nonetheless will usually consist of something interesting, amusing, or annoying (depending on my mood).

Here's the first Super Bonus Feature - a video of Joe Scarborough saying "fuck you" in the first 5 seconds without even knowing it. What potty mouths those nasty Republicans possess!

Watch it and enjoy the startled reactions, the lying excuses, and the short memories of these dummies. It's hysterical!

Do we need any more reasons?

The debate over the future of Joe Lieberman's leadership of the Homeland Security Committee is going on way longer than I expected. This should have been resolved last week. Now Harry Reid is making conciliatory noises as if Joe's actions over the last several years don't mean much.

I know this is an emotional issue to many Democrats. Lieberman's outright disdain and public bashing of our President-elect has been shameful and scandalous. If Joe Lieberman was a Republican and he pulled the same shit against the GOP, he would have been tossed out of the party in about a nanosecond. Our leadership gives off a smell of weakness and indecision when it takes them so long to issue punitive measures against Lieberman.

But let's put all that aside for a moment and take a look at a cold hard non-partisan FACT about Lieberman.

The fact is, Joe Lieberman has done NOTHING in two years as Homeland Security chair in terms of oversight. The very reason we have this committee is to investigate ways to make our nation safer and provide oversight of the administration's policies. For two years, there's been no oversight, no hearings, no subpoenas, nothing.

This abandonment of duty is an example of the worst kind of malfeasance known in government. The absolute lack of doing anything to avoid the appearance of doing anything wrong! Joe has utterly and thoroughly abdicated his responsibilities to the American people by transforming himself into a puppet for the GOP and a cheerleader for George W. Bush's failed policies. His endless appearances on the campaign trail with John McCain over the last 11 months are a prime example of the kind of leadership that Joe Lieberman provides for our nation. Lieberman's mealy-mouthed accusation of Democratic "partisanship" is simply a thin vaporous smokescreen he's using to try to conceal his own vicious and destructive GOP partisan agenda.

Meanwhile, nothing of importance is getting done by Lieberman as he scrambles to maintain his hold on power. He can potentially cause the Democrats real damage with the subpoena power and investigative authority he'll finally use if he's allowed to continue as chairman. Suddenly, he'll find plenty of reasons to use his power to create a logjam in the Senate against any useful Democratically-sponsored legislation.

Heckuva job, Joey!

Sunday, November 09, 2008

MN: Franken still alive and kicking

Currently the vote difference in Minnesota stands at incumbent Republican Norm Coleman leading Democrat Al Frankin by a mere 221 votes, initiating an automatic recount.

But there's also the issue of many "undervotes", where people clearly marked their ballots in the presidential race, but for some reason a vote wasn't registered in the senate race.

Often, this kind of thing can be attributed to either the voter only interested in the presidential ticket, or they made a mark on the senate candidate's oval that was unreadable by the optical scanner. This usually translates to someone putting a checkmark in the oval, or circling the oval, or filling in the wrong oval then crossing it out and filling in their proper choice, all of which will register as a non-vote. The machines are set to accept a ballot if there is one good vote on it, even if they fully intended to vote for their choice for senate by, say, circling the candidate's name.

From the Star-Tribune (AP):
An Associated Press analysis of the nearly 25,000-vote difference in Minnesota presidential and U.S. Senate race tallies shows that most ballots lacking a recorded Senate vote were cast in counties won by Democrat Barack Obama.

The finding could have implications for Republican Sen. Norm Coleman and DFLer Al Franken, who are headed for a recount separated by the thinnest of margins -- 221 votes as of Friday, or about 0.01 percent.

Though some voters may have intentionally bypassed the race, others may have mismarked their ballot or optical scanning machines may have misread them. A recount to begin Nov. 19 will use manual inspection to detect such ballots.
Obama won by a huge margin in many areas where there were significant non-votes for the senate race. This will likely contribute to a long and exhaustive recount, where "voter intent" will be a matter to be judged individually on perhaps tens of thousands of the inconclusive ballots. Minnesota may be headed for a nightmare similar to the 2000 Florida recount. I'm assuming that lawyers in the state are already working on the flood of lawsuits that will inevitably follow.

I'm not really looking forward to that, but I still hope that Al Franken wins.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

What it Means to be a LIEbercrat

OK, Let's get this straight. Is Joey a Democrat or not?
  • He ran as the vice presidential candidate for the Democratic party
  • When he lost the D primary for his Senate seat fair and square, he ran against the Democratic party's nominee -- it wasn't convenient to be a Democrat then.
  • When he won re-election to the Senate, largely with Republican support, it was convenient for him to be a D because he had a committee chairmanship on Homeland Security.
  • When he could get lots of attention from the media and be fawned over by the Rs, he attacked Obama, cast his lot with McCain and did a lot of the dirty work McCain wouldn't even do. He knew he would get more attention and a prime-time speaking slot at the R convention, not so much the Ds.
  • And NOW, according to Politico, unless Harry Reid guarantees the chairmanship of Homeland Security, Joey is going to take his votes and go home -- to the Republican caucus.
WTF? Why is anyone even considering allowing this worm in the Democratic caucus for the 111 Congress? And why isn't state central kicking him out on his sorry ass ASAP? Decisions have consequences. It's time for consequences to rain from the heavens on Joey's sorry head.

It's people like Joe LIEberman that allow bumper stickers like Bob saw yesterday to happen. Shame on you, Joe LIEberman. Shame.

They ain't gonna just lie down

Yesterday I pulled into a bank parking lot right behind a highly polished Hummer. On the back window was a bumper sticker. I felt I had to get a picture of it.

So I parked and approached the vehicle. When I got near, the driver walked up. I pasted a good-ol'-boy smile on my face and said, "Do you mind if I take a picture of that bumper sticker? I think it's awesome!"

The guy, a slight and very serious forty-something yuppie-looking fellow, said "sure thing."

I focused the camera and said, "Where can you buy something like that?"

"I bought it from one of the many right-wing organizations I contribute to. It's a goddamn shame what's happened to this country," he replied.

Ohhhhhh-Kay. I thanked him, smiled again, and threw him a double thumbs-up and said, with completely transparent earnestness, "Palin in twenty-twelve! Gotta go and catch a train!" and took off, leaving him wondering if he'd just been made fun of.

Yeesh!

This is a reminder that the extreme Right isn't going to simply go away. The GOP may be a party in disarray, but every indication points to them causing as much trouble for the Democrats as possible.

Already they're launching "Impeach Obama" websites, and right-wing blogs are pouncing on any little thing they can, like at yesterday's presser with Obama's off-hand slap at Nancy Reagan's penchant for astrology, for which he quickly apologized (although, I guess when Republicans explore the supernatural, it somehow ain't Satan's work) or that silly "Office of the President Elect" sign on his podium (really, I can't defend that one; it struck me as very pompous-looking).

The point is, even though Bush set the bar so low for the Presidency, the weak and ineffective Democratic leadership that allowed him to get away with it is at least partly to blame. It would be a terrible mistake to assume that the Republican minority in Congress will return the "favor". They may be loud, obnoxious, and often over-the-line in their accusations, but they'll never be as complacent as the Democrats have been for the last eight years.

Fueled by the extremist views and contributions from people like the gun-toting Hummer driver above, the Republicans will be much more proactive in their efforts to disempower the new President than the Democrats ever were during Bush's reign.

We can't forget that.

Friday, November 07, 2008

Muy awesome-o

Peruvian-American Jim Himes is a hit in Lima!

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Time to get the Steering Committee involved

Here's more info on the "Joe Must Go" movement. Repost from FireDogLake:

By: Jane Hamsher Thursday November 6, 2008 2:01 pm



The Huffington Post is reporting that in their meeting today, Reid told Lieberman that he had to step down from his position as chair of the Homeland Security Committee if he remained in the Democratic Caucus.  Lieberman did not accept this offer, which means that his only redress is to go around Reid and petition the Senate Democratic Steering and Outreach Committee to keep his seat.

We've watched for years as Joe called us traitors, lied his face off, stabbed Democrats in the back and did everything he could to keep Barack Obama out of the white house.  Lieberman laundered smears that even McCain wasn't willing to launch himself.

No way.

Make no mistake about it -- Lieberman was openingly threatening the Democratic caucus in his press conference today.  Enough is enough.

Please sign the petition to the Steering and Outreach Committee, telling them it's time for Joe to go.

Memo to Harry Reid

TO: Harry Reid
FROM: Connecticut Progressives
RE: Joe LIEberman

It is time to tell Joey boy he has no options to consider. He is a worm, a traitor to the Democratic party, an opportunist whose hubris knows no bounds. The chickens have come home to roost. You need to tell him to go f%$k himself (John McCain or Dick Cheney can help him with that remark). No welcome in the Democratic caucus. No lunches with the old boys. And most important of all, no more chairmanship!

He's an Independent. There is no such thing as an Independent Democrat. Call his bluff after his outrageous behavior in this campaign. Time to exile him to the minority party -- out in the cold while the true Democrats sit inside and drink cocoa.

If he would go so far as to vote against what used to be his core principles (who knows what he stands for anymore -- other than his own ego) only to put a stick in the Democrats' eyes, so be it.

He needs to be made Mr. Irrelevant. A new administration with lots of newsmakers creating a Washington in which no one calls to book him on a Sunday show? My idea of heaven on earth.

Mr. 44

Another good thing about Obama winning

No GOP-sponsored pardons for George W. Bush or Dick Cheney!

Remember the Republicans have a history with this sort of thing. Like that time newly ascended President Gerald Ford issued a pardon to recently resigned ex-President Richard M. Nixon, even though Tricky Dick hadn't been arrested, charged, arraigned, nor convicted of any crimes.

True, he was definitely going to be impeached after the three articles of impeachment passed in the House, and then likely convicted in the Senate, but once he quit there wasn't any legal reason for him to worry. Unless he was guilty of something.

Of course, being pardoned doesn't mean that doesn't mean he wasn't guilty of something. All it means is that justice for his possible crimes was subverted.

I think we'll have a much better chance of seeing justice properly applied some time after January 20th.

No wonder Bush has already said he wants an orderly transition to an Obama administration...he doesn't want to piss off the guy who will have a large say in the decision to pursue W's prosecution.

All of a sudden, the dumb hick gets smart. Too little, too late, cowboy.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Thanks, Bob!

It was great to be back here at the blog last night. As usual, Bob has done an amazing job recording our progressive history here in CT and helping us all feel like we were there.

It hasn't really hit me yet -- this is all still in the realm of really?! A new countdown -- 76 days till we have the government back. I am so heartened to see the spontaneous joy that erupted on city streets last night -- and to see the statistics that show that young people stepped up and are taking the responsibility of saving their future seriously.

It is a new morning in America.....one that reflects the light of white, black, latino, straight, gay, men, women, old, young, physically challenged...an America that we helped create and are lucky to be able to see with our own eyes and feel in our own hearts.

The morning after

The result of too much Jagermeister and extremism.

Major kudos to the artist Zina Saunders, for this and many other snarky works.

Day of Reckoning

Poor little Joe Lieberman. Something is troubling him.

Could it be that his precious chairman's position of the Homeland Security Committee is in jeopardy?

Yup.

Joe is being called to the principal's office for misbehaving in class. He faces almost certain punishment. And it ain't gonna be something simple like having to clean the chalk board erasers after school (yes, I was sentenced to do this as a result of being a rambunctious young child in 4th grade), or even a Bart Simpson-esque writing on the chalk board 100 times "I will not sell out my party!"

It's too late for that.

Yikes! I would NOT want to get on this guy's bad side! Lookit that guy's scowling mug!

Of course, Harry Reid is justly famous for his ability to lose courage at the last minute when faced with difficult decisions. I can only hope that buoyed by the results of yesterday's overwhelming victory, certain anatomical features on our Majority Leader will have grown in size from these:

...to these!

Yes, the day that progressive Democrats have longed for is finally upon us! Senator Joe Lieberman will likely get his long-overdue comeuppance. Joe's "Day of Reckoning" is here!

From today's Hartford Courant:
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada said he plans to meet with Connecticut Sen. Joe Lieberman later this week to discuss the situation regarding Lieberman in the Senate.

In the past, Democrats tolerated Lieberman's political straddling because he held their slim political majority in his hands. Now that Democrats have strengthened their hold on the Senate, there could be added pressure to punish Lieberman.
Yup. The only reason Joe was allowed to pretend to be a Democrat was for his usefulness to give us the majority in the Senate. I didn't really agree with this strategy, but compromise is sometimes necessary to get things done. But now Joe's purpose in the Senate is gone, and he's going to have to answer for his actions to defeat Barack Obama, defeat Senate and House Democrats, and basically his efforts to destroy the party that gave him the career he had.

The Democratic Party didn't leave Joe Lieberman; HE left it to suck up to the pro-war GOP. Time to face your reckoning, Joe.

(CT Bob's Helpful Internet Tip: NEVER search Google Images for "big balls" with the SafeSearch feature turned off...just trust me on this!)

"Vote No on 1" prevails

I spent a few hours at my local precinct handing out "Vote No on 1" handcards yesterday morning. Generally, most people accepted the cards when I smiled as they approached and wished them a big "Good morning!" as I thrust a card towards them. Some scowled and said "No thank you" as they walked past, reminding me of the way I usually behave towards people who do what I was doing.

The irony wasn't lost on me.

Quite a few people took the card, and after glancing at it briefly, they asked "What's this?", which allowed me to explain the purpose of the question and why a new Constitutional Convention and the possibility of making every legislative issue into a ballot question would be bad for Connecticut. Many didn't even know the question was on the ballot, and more often than not, told me they'd vote no on the question. It was very fulfilling to be responsible for helping at least some people make up their minds.

(Rosa DeLauro staffer Letty with Milford 3rd District Chairman Rob Masud handing out "Vote No on 1" cards)

The success of the Vote No effort is proof that a large number of committed volunteers can successfully defeat a well-funded group that appeals to a limited number of special interests.

I'll have more to discuss later on the implications of this vote, and how it contrasts with California's apparent adoption of Proposition 8, which bans marriage equality.

Savoring the big win

All day today I'll make little observations about our huge victory last night.

Here, our newest member of Connecticut's Congressional delegation autographs a campaign sign while his wife Mary looks on.

It's a new day for America!

Good morning, people!

I'm nursing a sore back from lifting stuff, a ragged throat from screaming "Woo-Hoo!" all night, and a slight hangover from the very tasty Atlantic Amber that the Brewhouse served up relentlessly.

I only slept about 4 hours last night so I'll be dragging ass all day. Right now I've got to drive up to Hamden and return the rental video lights that I offered to arrange for them, and after that it's going to be about 10 hours of relaxing in my Lay-Z-Boy recliner, watching the pundits on TV, reading the blogs, and snoozing whenever the notion occurs. I'm getting wiser in my old age and now I take the day AFTER Election Day off too, ever since the day after Ned's amazing primary victory back in 2006 when I had to be on the road at 7AM after staying up and drinking fine single-malt scotch with the bloggers until 3 in the morning!

I'm sorry we won't have Joe Lieberman to kick around much longer, but schadenfreude isn't a very nice emotion to indulge in, so I'll only do so for about the next six months.

Oh, and one more thing for now...

"AMERICA, FUCK YEAH!!!!"

Barack Obama's acceptance speech

I'm gonna call it a night, but first, here's some video our President-elect Barack Obama talking to the Himes crowd.

Goddamn, what a great night!

video

Jim and Joyce and Maura and Me

In two glorious full-color photos!

The beer in this place tastes extra awesome tonight.


Watching McCain concession speech

The crowd was attentive and respectful. That doesn't mean we didn't whoop a few times whenever McCain mentioned Barack Obama!

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Some post-win photos

Some sweet refreshment, well-earned!

Jim already getting down to business with Dick Blumenthal.

Yes We Did!

Check out the two big winners!

Richard Roy D-119th on our TV

Congrats to Richard Roy, and our other Milford incumbents Paul Davis Rep. 117th and Gayle Slossberg Senate 14th; and especially welcome our newest Representative, Barbara Lambert 118th.