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ClarendonDem's Journal
ClarendonDem's Journal
October 27, 2017

Hell or High Water

Anyone else watched this movie? I enjoyed it, but it got me thinking about social issues, especially Chris Pine's line near the end when he said "I've been poor my whole life" and being poor was "like a disease" that passes from "generation to generation." But a really good movie overall, bit of Robin Hood-ish.

October 24, 2017

Roy Moore is literally the only politician in the US

Worse than Trump.

Mr. Moore repeatedly forced the Alabama Supreme Court into unwinnable fights on tangential side issues, rather than keeping the institution focused on its job. If you think the Senate has failed to attend to the country’s real problems, just wait until he gets there. Mr. Moore spins up “facts” to serve his worldview, as when he claimed that sharia was in force in Illinois or that the law required football players to stand for the national anthem. He called for a de facto religious test when he argued that Muslims elected to represent their communities should not be seated in Congress. This would have appalled the Founding Fathers and should alarm believers of all stripes.

Glad the WaPo calls him out. More here - [link:https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/doug-jones-for-senator-in-alabama/2017/10/23/2752fa6e-b830-11e7-be94-fabb0f1e9ffb_story.html?utm_term=.7b2160189693|]
October 11, 2017

"An Even More Insidious Kind of Gerrymandering"

As a native of North Carolina, I was thrilled when the state went for President Obama in 2008, and thought that was the beginning of a gradual liberal shift in the state. Unfortunately, the state has gone back towards Republicans since 2008, and it isn't clear to me why. But that aside, North Carolina republicans haven't been shy about what, to me, represents abuses of their power. This judicial gerrymandering idea is particularly troubling.

North Carolina Republicans are not having much luck in court. Already this year, the U.S. Supreme Court has struck down state legislative districts and federal congressional districts drawn by the North Carolina GOP as unconstitutional racial gerrymanders. State courts have also blocked key portions of Republicans’ legislative power-grab, including an election board overhaul that would’ve prevented Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper from restoring voting rights throughout the state. A federal court had previously invalidated a different disenfranchisement bill, writing that Republican state legislators had “target[ed] African Americans with almost surgical precision.”

The state GOP has not modified its strategy in response to these rulings. Instead, it’s trying to modify the courts. North Carolina’s Republican-dominated General Assembly is currently poised to pass a gerrymandering bill that would carve up state judicial districts to create more seats for GOP judges and fewer seats for Democratic ones. The measure would not merely politicize the courts. It would transform them into another political branch designed to do the bidding of legislative Republicans. If the assembly’s gambit succeeds, North Carolina’s judiciary may permanently lose its independence.

More at the link - [link:http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/jurisprudence/2017/10/judicial_gerrymandering_is_coming_to_north_carolina.html|
October 10, 2017

I get the sense that what the Party can do, if it needs to do anything, to engage with rural voters

Is going to be an ongoing discussion for the foreseeable future. Excerpts from an article on the WaPo titled "The Daily 202: Final Virginia governor’s debate spotlights Democratic problems in rural America."

THE BIG IDEA: Democrats have a real problem in rural America, and it was on display in the third and final Virginia governor’s debate last night.

In the heart of coal country, at the University of Virginia campus in Wise, the moderator asked Ed Gillespie about schools. The Republican nominee quickly pivoted to talk about coal. He celebrated the Trump administration’s announcement that Barack Obama’s Clean Power Plan will be rescinded and warned that his Democratic opponent, Ralph Northam, will try to put a Virginia version in effect if he gets elected. He then promised repeatedly to reinstate a coal tax credit.

Rather than push back, Northam — the lieutenant governor — talked about pre-K and K-12 education. Then the moderator asked him about the Clean Power Plan. He grew visibly uncomfortable and gave a halting answer that both nodded to the importance of coal and called for embracing renewable energy. “Coal is very important to the economy in southwest Virginia. I understand that,” he said. “So, I will do everything that I can to support the coal industry. … At the same time, we have a great opportunity.” He explained that renewables like wind and solar are “a win-win” because they could bring the jobs of the future. “At the same time, it would move us to cleaner energy and a cleaner environment,” he said.
-- For Democrats, figuring out how to get a toehold back into rural territory is imperative. The biggest Senate battlegrounds in 2018 are in states like North Dakota, Montana, West Virginia, Indiana and Missouri.

Thus far, in Virginia’s off-year election, there are few indications that they are figuring it out. If Northam blows this race — which is a very real possibility — it will set off Democratic alarm bells about the wisdom of their midterm strategy and generate a wave of nasty recriminations in the escalating civil war between the pragmatists and the leftists.


I would be shocked if Northam lost -- there's simply too many votes in the NoVa area where we live. But Virginia was much closer than I expected in November, and if folks stay home, which they often do in off-year elections, the vote could be tight.
October 6, 2017

Paul Gosar was elected by the citizens of Arizona to provide leadership

And ends up making statements supporting right wing conspiracy theories and excusing racist hatred.

But Rep. Paul A. Gosar (R-Ariz.) still seems swayed by the “false flag” theory of the white supremacist violence.

In an interview with Vice News that aired Thursday night, Gosar suggested that the rally was “created by the left” and carried out by an “Obama sympathizer.”

The congressman also brought up a thoroughly refuted claim that Soros, a Hungarian-born Jew who survived Nazi occupation during World War II, had collaborated with the Third Reich, prompting a strongly worded condemnation from a Soros spokeswoman.

More at the link - https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2017/10/06/arizona-congressman-repeats-bogus-claim-that-charlottesville-violence-was-left-wing-plot/?utm_term=.21ea2fd250eb

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