Thursday’s Forum

FILED UNDER: Open Forum
Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter

Comments

  1. Jim Brown 32 says:

    Lots of discussion the past couple of weeks in the office about Covid and Vaccinations and I can say Ive been a little surprised by the amount of nuance allowed into the conversations. It is recognized that covid is a threat. BUT, risk and risk mitigation seem to be the sticking points on where the shared agreement on facts break down.

    There is agreement on measures to protect the elderly… outside of that there seems to be some cynicism about mitigation vs risk for the middle-aged and below. Summed up…there is only so much that can be done to stop Covid and most people except for a very few will survive anyway so you might as well live and wear a mask around Grandma.

    My administrative assistant has a najor risk factor and despite watching Fox News all day, I dare anyone not vaxed to violate the company mask policy and distancing rules for the unvaxed around her.

    I’d have lived in this part of Florida since college and had forgotten that opinions here are shaped by community leaders and mentors. These people dont necessarily trust Fox News, Fox News validates what community leaders say…who are heavily influenced by Fox News (and Social Media). A real negative feedback loop.

    There is real opportunity to sew mistrust in the Fox, etc if there were the will and motivation. There isn’t so there won’t. Because, as I said a few days ago. The game is fund-raising…and we don’t motive people to reach for their wallets by appealing to their higher emotional centers…that is done by appealing to baser instints. There could absolutely be done here what Stacy Abrams did in Georgia. Republicans only have Florida because Democrats abandoned it now that its optional in Electoral math.

    BTW… the average Trump flag and bumper sticker count on my commute is around 1. Vastly down from when I started house hunting here in February. He’s fighting for relevance with his base.

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  2. MarkedMan says:

    @Jim Brown 32: I’m very happy to be wrong about my prediction of massive Trump flag count. I was on a rural highway in western Maryland a couple of months ago and could have easily held my breath between Trump flag sightings.

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  3. Sleeping Dog says:

    A couple of interesting opinion pieces in this AM’s NYT.

    America Has Too Many Elections

    The ability of the American political system to deliver major policies on urgent issues is hampered by features of our institutions that we take for granted and rarely think about. Take the Constitution’s requirement that House members serve for only two-year terms.

    Just a few months into a new administration, as the country grapples with issues of economic recovery and renewal, Congress’s actions are being shaped not by the merits of policy alone but also by the looming midterm elections. It’s not just the fall 2022 election; many incumbents are also calculating how best to position themselves to fend off potential primary challenges.

    The writer focuses on Congress, but the too many elections criticism can be extended to most states. It is not unusual to look at a ballot that has contests for dozens of positions. Who knows and who cares who the library or cemetery trustee is? Should judges and prosecutors be elected?

    Why Rural America Needs Immigrants

    KNOXVILLE, Iowa — Rural America has a growth problem. Business and industry desperately need workers, but the domestic labor pool is shallow, and the nation’s birthrate is slowing.
    ————————
    Even before the pandemic, we didn’t have enough workers to fill open jobs. A recent report from the Marion County Development Commission shows that we had 3.3 percent unemployment in March 2020. There were 17,340 individuals working, with an estimated 1,113 job openings and 306 initial and continuing unemployment claims.

    Yes, rural areas need immigrants, but they don’t want them. They’d rather wallow in their prejudices that the problem is welfare and lazy people. Immigration reform is needed, and logically it should be something both parties could move forward on to a compromise, but R’s would rather have an issue to flog rather than solve a problem. Governing is performative don’t ya know.

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  4. Sleeping Dog says:

    @CSK:

    CSK, reach out to me JFMunderscoreSTLatYahoodotCom

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  5. wr says:

    Thought I’d answer MR on today’s forum instead of yesterday’s, where he wrote:

    “I’d like to hear or read progressive explanations of the NYC mayoral primary. Because it seems that rich, white Manhattan was all for the progressive ‘Defund’ candidates because: racism, meanwhile Black and brown voters – you know, the people actually experiencing racism – went strong for the moderate ex-cop.”

    I don’t know where this “seems” comes from. The second-ranked candidate, Christina Garcia, wasn’t a self-styled progressive, either — she was the former head of the sanitation department who kept garbage collection going during the pandemic, and she was running as a strong administrator. Before the choice-ranking was invoked, Adams and Garcia together had 52% of the vote while the highest-achieving progressive, Maya Wiley, had 21.4. (And the ultra-progressive Dianne Morales had less than three percent.)

    As I see it — from New York — the race was a competition between candidates who ran as competent administrators who could get the city running again versus progressives who wanted to focus on issues of race and class and the usual ideological concepts.

    My take is that right now New Yorkers are exhausted after the last 18 months, and they want things to go back to normal. Not bad normal — no one was voting for a Giuliani here, and even though the ultimate winner was more pro-police than others, he was also a former cop who had spent his career fighting to make the department better and more just. Both Adams and Garcia were running on that — let’s fix what’s broken, and then go after the underlying problems, as opposed to Wiley message that you need to fix the intractable things before you can tackle the quotidian.

    It probably didn’t help Wiley any that DeBlasio, running as a progressive eight years ago, talked real pretty about the big issues and then turned out to be a terrible manager and a rotten mayor.

    But no, New York is not Bill Maher’s fever dream come true, where the oppressed black and brown people rise up and turn on the progressives because they find their vocabulary off.

    And best of all, Andrew Yang ended up as a punchline.

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  6. MarkedMan says:

    @wr: Exactly so. NYC is the same as any place dominated by a single party: factions and issues get debated and decided under the party umbrella. Yes, as Democrats they are not likely to have a lot of anti-abortionists doing well but, let’s face facts, that has nothing to do with the issues of the Mayor anyway. The things that are actually important can still get vetted in the public sphere.

    If they had two or more viable political parties then perhaps these issues would more often split on party lines. But adding more parties to the mix doesn’t make anything better, just slightly different.

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  7. Kathy says:

    How about we sell vaccines as investments?

    For the low investment of thirty minutes, you get decades of healthier life. That’s a YUGE rate of return.

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  8. KM says:

    OT whine – first day back in the office for the team, trial basis. Forgot how much prep work you needed to do to be office-presentable and just how much commute sucks. Also, the sheer amount of electronics you have to cart around to get through the day. At home, it was all just a few feet away; the office is bare bones after a year empty. We had to send someone out for an emergency coffee run as there was nothing in-house. Nobody’s computer setups are working right and monitor/ network problems galore.

    I miss my couch already. How did we live like this?

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  9. Jen says:

    @KM: You have all of my sympathies today. Reentry is going to be tough for many.

    I returned to an office for a brief stint back in 2018 after having been on my own for about five years. I lasted less than 9 months before scurrying back to my WFH/freelance setting.

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  10. OzarkHillbilly says:

    I suppose it was inevitable: Revealed: the people who signed up to Magacoin Trump cryptocurrency

    Mining your voters for every last nickel.

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  11. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Sleeping Dog: Who knows and who cares who the library or cemetery trustee is?

    Local rural voters sure do. They personally know these people, and it is reassuring to call a govt office and hear a familiar voice.

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  12. Jen says:

    @Sleeping Dog:

    Who knows and who cares who the library or cemetery trustee is?

    Maybe no one, until the library board of trustees is filled with people who think libraries are a waste of money. In New Hampshire, library boards have broad powers that are distinct from town governance. This was intentional. Library boards are responsible for the hiring of all library employees (not just the library director). They are also responsible for the library budget, the building, etc. Not too long ago, we had a group of individuals in town advocating for the library to become self-sustaining, through donations, and this group regularly puts up candidates for the Library board. Were they ever to get elected, they would try* to gut the library budget.

    * I say “try” because the NH Constitution and RSAs are pretty clear that any town that has a library is required to support it, and it is to remain “forever free” to residents.

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  13. @KM:

    OT whine

    Can’t be OT in the OF! 😉

    And yes: the amount of time needed to get ready and go to work is pretty substantial.

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  14. Mu Yixiao says:

    Capitol rioter forced to unlock laptop.

    [Guy Reffitt] pleaded not guilty to five federal crimes, including bringing a handgun to the Capitol grounds during the insurrection and obstructing justice by allegedly threatening his family. The felony gun charge was added last month, and undercuts false claims from Trump and prominent Republican lawmakers that the rioters weren’t armed and that they had “no guns whatsoever.”

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  15. Teve says:

    @ddiamond

    The nation’s largest hospital association, @ahahospitals, now supports requiring all health workers to get vaccinated against coronavirus — a potential tipping point, with many hospitals still wavering on requiring shots.

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  16. Kathy says:

    So, about the need for boosters for the COVID vaccines, there’s this in The Guardian today.

    Quote:

    “The waning of antibody responses over time may support booster strategies, especially in the setting of a third wave in the UK with Delta variant, where infection episodes are now common after two vaccine doses,” said Prof Eleanor Barnes, a hepatologist at the University of Oxford. “However, even with waning antibody levels, memory B cells and T cells may well protect from severe disease.

    Emphasis added.

    This has been bugging me since reports about drops in antibody levels in people who’ve recovered from COVID were first circulated last year. I mean, if antibodies alone were all there is to immunity, then your blood ought to be swarming with antibodies against measles, pertussis, rubella, smallpox, polio, etc., and clearly that’s not the case.

    I hope Pfizer, Moderna, et. al. are still following the progress of the people who volunteered for the phase 3 trials of their vaccines. They are the canary in the coal mine, and they have been vaccinated the longest. Some clear back to June or July of 2020. How is their immunity holding up? How many have gotten breakthrough infections after how much time past full vaccination? The data surely has to be there, if there is follow up.

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  17. Teve says:

    @brianbeutler

    Republican bad faith (in naming pro-insurrection members to sabotage the committee) is just a feature of the landscape; Pelosi intervening to prevent the sabotage is a move by an actor with agency, and subject to scrutiny.

    thread

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  18. KM says:

    @Teve:
    It’s coming. Hospitals *may* let you be unvaxxed but only if you follow strict masking and infection protocols like they do with flu shots but somehow I don’t see the dissenters agreeing to that. The intersection of anti-vaxxers and maskholes is insanely high; while I concede there might be hospital workers wary of the shot but perfectly willing to mask up with N95 and face-shields constantly, they’re not going to be the majority or even a substantial number. From personal experience, I can tell you that if they don’t want the shot, they don’t want to follow the alternate protocols that were created to accommodate that either.

    We’re gonna see so many losses in the healthcare, both from those who’ve burned out due to COVID denial and the deniers who’ve been shown the door.

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  19. Teve says:

    @bradleyrsimpson

    This is the problem with the Trump grifter universe – no one is going to throw their money as easily at people who aren’t him. Greene and Gaetz have held 7 fundraising events and between them are $225,000 in hole.

    https://t.co/QZYtUHLECb

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  20. Teve says:

    @KM: oh yeah, particularly in Trumper areas, people are just going to bail.

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  21. CSK says:

    @KM:
    May I remind you of the the immortal words of Doug Mataconis on the Open Forum: “Where you can’t be off topic, because there IS no topic.”

    @Steven L. Taylor:
    I love telecommuting. I don’t even have to get out of bed to go to work. Just reach out, grab the laptop, and start.

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  22. Teve says:

    @normornstein [talking about Cillizza et al]

    What is so astonishing and so disheartening is that the evidence keeps mounting over and over again of utter bad faith, radicalism and contempt for honesty and fundamental norms. But powerful journalists just cannot seem to learn. And it creates a danger for all of us, & for them

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  23. CSK says:

    @Teve:
    And Ron DeSantis is in trouble now for the heinous crime of pushing vaccines, aka “Biden poison.”

    I do wonder how the vaccines can be “Biden poison” if they were invented by Trump.

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  24. Teve says:

    So they made Snake Eyes Asian. I’m sure incel outrage is already through the roof.

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  25. Teve says:

    @CSK: i heard some excuse one time about how Trump deserves credit for pushing the system for the vaccine* but then Fauci and Big Pharma went behind his back and corrupted the process.

    *cause, you know, no other politician would have supported a vaccine.

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  26. CSK says:

    @Teve:
    By “corrupted the process,” do you mean that they actually adulterated the vaccines so
    that the shots now contain “Biden poison”?

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  27. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @CSK: I don’t even have to get out of bed to go to work. Just reach out, grab the laptop, and start.

    What? No coffee? HEATHEN!!!

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  28. CSK says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:
    Of course I have coffee. What do you take me for? But that just requires the push of a button.

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  29. Kathy says:

    Kind of an update. I saw the surgeon last Friday, and he wants to do an ultrasound, to see whether a second mesh is necessary.

    Here we go again…

    So, I dallied and refused to even think about it during the weekend. Then I actively procrastinated until I spoke with my insurance agent, who assures me the ultrasound and possible additional surgery would be covered under the current deductible. I believe he believes this, but I don’t know the insurance agency agrees with him. In any case, there’s still a co-pay.

    The ultrasound is scheduled for this Saturday. Coincidentally, the imaging lab is in the same building as the surgeon’s office. This not only means he’ll get it quickly, but he can take the elevator down and consult directly with the radiologists (does that apply to an ultrasound?) who write the report.

    I neglected to ask what this additional surgery would require. I mean, will it be outpatient or require a second hospital stay? And is it done laparoscopically or not? I really should have asked. I dread another days long stay in the hospital.

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  30. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @CSK: What do you take me for?

    I thought I made that clear: HEATHEN!!!

    But that just requires the push of a button.

    It self delivers? Or do you have a coffee machine on your bedside table too?

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  31. Teve says:

    @CSK:

    do you mean that they actually adulterated the vaccines so
    that the shots now contain “Biden poison”?

    I’m not sure how they think Fauci corrupted them, but that’s what I heard.

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  32. Teve says:

    @billkristol

    Why no one should pay attention to Kevin McCarthy on congressional committees:
    “Everybody thought Hillary Clinton was unbeatable, right?But we put together a Benghazi special committee. A select committee. What are her numbers today? Her numbers are dropping.”
    — Sep. 29, 2015

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  33. Teve says:

    @rightwingwatch

    Rep. Madison Cawthorn vows that if the GOP gains control of the House in 2022, he will “make sure that consequences are doled out” to Dr. Anthony Fauci: “We want to prosecute this guy to the full ability of the law.”

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  34. CSK says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:
    1. The question was purely rhetorical.
    2. I’m working on it.

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  35. Kathy says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    Or do you have a coffee machine on your bedside table too?

    You know, that makes all kinds of sense.

    Picture this: before bed, you place the grounds and water, and set the machine to begin brewing at the same time your alarm clock goes off. You wake up to the scent of freshly brewed coffee, and don’t even need to go to the kitchen to get it.

    On the downside, I’d need an in-room fridge to keep milk for the coffee. I’d also have to lug the carafe and basket to the kitchen for washing, then get it back to the room at some point.

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  36. CSK says:

    @Kathy:
    Hope for the best-case scenario. Keep us posted.

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  37. Joe says:

    I’m not sure how they think Fauci corrupted them, but that’s what I heard.

    Now Teve, the proper formulation.

    I’m not sure how they think Fauci corrupted them, but lots of people are saying.

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  38. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Kathy: It’s a huge ROI, but still intangible. Where’s the money? (And don’t talk about all those extra earning years to an audience where their hourly income can be defined as “almost enough for rent” either.)

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  39. Teve says:

    @Joe: your point is tremendous.

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  40. gVOR08 says:

    @Jen: l hate voting for school board members for fear I’m voting for some closet creationist. The only thing worse would be not voting for them. I can usually go online and at least vote for the teachers instead of the independent financial advisors, but that’s about all I can usually find out. Better would be local news doing more in depth coverage, but local news can barely afford to do a few AP stories and local sports.

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  41. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Teve: They wouldn’t have that problem if they’d only stop paying for services in advance. How many security service providers, venues, printing companies, concessionaires, etc. did FG stiff while running for/at President? How many millions are still owed to these people?

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  42. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Teve: The back story was always the big disconnect in the original GI Joe plotting. I never quite put together how a Caucasian orphan ended up on the streets of wherever it was.

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  43. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @CSK: Well it CERTAINLY didn’t get there from FG putting it in, now, did it?

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  44. Mu Yixiao says:

    @gVOR08:

    Better would be local news doing more in depth coverage, but local news can barely afford to do a few AP stories and local sports.

    Every election, I contact all the candidates and offer them un-edited space in the paper, and the opportunity to do a one-on-one livestream to talk about their vision and what they’ll do if elected.

    I think I’ve had 2 people take me up on it in the past 2 years. That’s from 5 municipalities and a school district. Candidates don’t care about local journalism.

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  45. Teve says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker: yeah they’re not criming hard enough. Amateurs.

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  46. gVOR08 says:

    @Teve: Thank you. I so often see passing references to Hillary being unpopular as though that was a given or just fell out of the sky. She was hugely popular as Sec O’State. The GOP character assassination machine worked long and hard to make her unpopular. Biden worked hard at not triggering negative partisanship and the GOPs didn’t expect him to be nominated, so they didn’t have years to work on him. And of course he benefitted from being born white and male.

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  47. Mu Yixiao says:

    It’s from last fall, but it’s fun:

    West Wing’s crazy electoral maps.

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  48. Jen says:

    @gVOR08: Yep. School board members…this will be rough next time around, as anti-maskers have had their knickers in a twist over mask mandates for kids, and a number of them are squawking about running to kick out the horrible, awful people who have voted to put this public health requirement in place.

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  49. CSK says:

    @Sleeping Dog:
    Clearly I did something wrong, but my message was returned as undeliverable.

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  50. Jen says:

    @CSK: Hmmm. I had no problem. Format as xxx_xxx@YYYY.com?

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  51. Jen says:

    @CSK: Hmmm. I had no problem. Format as xxx_xxx@YYYY(dotcom)?

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  52. Jen says:

    @Jen: Moderators, please delete this one…

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  53. Kathy says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:

    Well, pretty much every government on Earth invests in childhood vaccinations. There’s a reason for this.

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  54. Kylopod says:

    @Mu Yixiao: The election nerd and West Wing fan that I am, I’ve obsessed over this monumental topic as well.

    Especially the Vinick-Santos map. I mean, the Bartlett reelection one was based on what would happen if a Democrat won a popular-vote landslide, and you can forgive the show a little on the grounds that we simply don’t know what that would translate to electorally since it’s been so long (since 1964) that we’ve seen anything like that. In 2008, we got a very modest sense of how a substantial popular vote swing can have surprising results (Obama won Indiana, nearly won Montana and Missouri, was in single digits in the Dakotas, etc.).

    But the second WW election, the Vinick-Santos one, was a lot weirder. It wasn’t a landslide but a nailbiter. The Republican carried California while the Democrat carried Texas. Sure, there was some favorite-son effect, but then Santos wasn’t a statewide winner in Texas, and while Vinick was a sitting Senator from California, that only further highlights the strangeness, since Cali hasn’t had a Republican Senator in the real world since Pete Wilson, who last won in 1988 and who (as governor) is often held partially responsible for the state’s shift to the left.

    But it gets even weirder. Santos, the Dem, loses almost the entire South–except South Carolina. Vinick loses most of New England except Vermont.

    Some of this was probably rooted in ignorance on the part of the show’s writers (as well as the attempts to create drama), but you also have to consider their vantage point in the real world. What we think of today as the modern electoral map is essentially something that began in 1992. If you look at most of the non-Southern states Clinton won, he dominated the Northeast and the Pacific Coast, carried the state of Illinois by a wide margin, and fought heavily for crucial states in the Midwest and Southwest. Bush, meanwhile, dominated the upper Mountain states and the Great Plains, and the majority of the South. Putting aside Clinton’s competitiveness in the South which would not translate to later Democrats, this all pretty much describes every election to the present day.

    It wasn’t like that before 1992. California and Illinois and New England were considered Republican-leaning up to that point. Clinton was the first Democrat to win many of those states since LBJ’s 1964 landslide, and in some cases the first since 1948 apart from LBJ’s landslide. Even Carter didn’t win those states: as the only Democrat to win a presidential election from 1968 to 1988, he did it by temporarily reconstructing the Solid South, while losing a lot of the states that today we think of as the Dems’ base.

    Why am I bringing all those up? Because the West Wing aired from the early to mid 2000s, when in the real world Bill Clinton was the only Democrat to win the presidency since the 1970s, and where a lot of conventional wisdom dismissed Clinton’s wins on the widespread but inaccurate belief that Ross Perot was a spoiler candidate who split the Republican vote. In 1996 Bob Dole made a serious play for California, and in 2000 Bush tried to win Illinois and NJ. It took some time for people to realize that Clinton’s wins in a lot of those states weren’t flukes.

    What’s striking to me is that in this modern electoral era we’re still in today, a Republican has won the popular vote only one time, in 2004. That particular election has some weirdness about it, though most of it isn’t visible from the electoral map itself, but rather from the margins: a lot of states that today we think of as Dem strongholds were surprisingly close: Bush was within single digits of winning California, Hawaii, NJ, Washington, Oregon, and Delaware. That was the most recent real-world election when the writers of West Wing came up with the Vinick-Santos race. It suggests that it’s hard to predict how things might change with a strong shift in the popular vote relative to recent elections. We like to think that Republicans today are just too unpopular to win the popular vote anytime soon, but I’m not sure that’s so clear–Trump wasn’t that far from winning it in 2016, and large national vote shifts just aren’t that predictable in their effects, despite the level of polarization today.

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  55. Jen says:

    @Kylopod: Not to mention that Vinick was a pro-choice Republican…talk about fantasy land…

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  56. Mu Yixiao says:

    Okay… Illegal immigration has gone too far.

    US border agents seize 15 giant snails

    (Can you tell it’s a slow day at work?)

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  57. flat earth luddite says:

    @CSK:
    Telecommuting is wonderful for me. This morning’s featured a ranting attorney screaming about my solving his goof. I switched the background to my zoom call to the bridge of Galactica and left the room to pour my warm-up. He stopped screaming and started laughing at the empty shot-up bridge, with my voice off screen asking him exactly what he wanted me to accomplish. Calmness and peace achieved.

    I love calling it in from home, although I do miss the opportunities to wow them with my collection of cartoon character silk ties. (Although they were a lot more effective when my hair was in a ponytail.)

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  58. Mu Yixiao says:

    @Kylopod:

    If I recall, the Santos-Vinick race put the writers in a tight bind. The viewers wanted Vinick to win. Alda plaid the role so well–and is such a respected actor–that Smits just couldn’t hold up. That’s when the power plant “scandal” was written in to make him look bad.

    I’ll say this for Sorkin: Despite his being solidly in the left, he writes some damn fine conservatives.

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  59. Jen says:

    @Mu Yixiao: You’d define Vinick as a conservative in that race? He was positioned solidly as a very moderate Republican: as noted above, he was pro-choice, pro-environmental regulation, etc. He had some pro-business credentials, that was it.

    Sorkin did a good job of writing an idealized form of Republican…many of whom used to exist. (I was working for the Republicans when the show started, and knew some really good people. They’d be run out of the party on rails by now.)

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  60. Kylopod says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    I’ll say this for Sorkin: Despite his being solidly in the left, he writes some damn fine conservatives.

    A lot of WW fans like to crap on the later seasons (especially after Sorkin left), but I thought Vinick was one of the show’s best creations, played wonderfully by Alan Alda.

    And yes, it was a fantasy. The show featured plenty of liberal fantasizing (like when Bartlett eviscerates a Dr. Laura clone to her face), but it also featured just overall fantasizing about camaraderie and good faith existing across the political spectrum. One of the most striking scenes for me was when Vinick is called into the Bartlett White House for some political negotiation (I can’t quite remember), then they simply spend the time alone schmoozing and eating ice cream, where Vinick admits he lost his religious faith after his wife died.

    It wasn’t that political rivals from opposite parties were personally friendly to each other; there are plenty of examples of that in the real world. It was that Bartlett’s character and integrity is so unquestioned that Vinick feels comfortable telling him something that would be tremendously damaging to him politically were it to come out.

    Despite its occasional inaccuracies, the show did display a fairly thorough knowledge of the nuts and bolts of the American political system. But it was also kind of a salve for people who are cynical about politicians and political operatives in general–a way of showing how things could be.

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  61. wr says:

    @Kathy: ” I’d also have to lug the carafe and basket to the kitchen for washing, then get it back to the room at some point”

    I’m sure I’ll get a thousand lectures from purists of all sorts here, but if you set up a Nespresso or a Keurig by your bed, you really would only have to push a button and wouldn’t be dealing with carafes and baskets.

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  62. wr says:

    @Mu Yixiao: “I’ll say this for Sorkin: Despite his being solidly in the left, he writes some damn fine conservatives”

    Be that as it may, Sorkin was long gone from The West Wing by this season.

    By the way, it’s commonly believed that the reason for his departure was his being busted for drugs, but the word around the biz at the time was that the delays from late scripts alone was costing an additional million dollars per episode…. and this was at a time when an expensive shot was budgeted around three or four million per…

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  63. Mu Yixiao says:

    @Jen:

    You’d define Vinick as a conservative in that race? He was positioned solidly as a very moderate Republican: as noted above, he was pro-choice, pro-environmental regulation, etc. He had some pro-business credentials, that was it.

    As a classic conservative, yes. To your points:

    Pro-choice. That’s an evangelical position more than a conservative one. From Wiki:

    In 2017, Gallup released polling information showing that 36% of Republicans identified as “pro-choice” and 70% agreed that abortion should be legal in some (56%) or all (14%) circumstances.

    Pro-environmental regulation. I think you’ll find that a lot of conservatives are hunters–and hunters (who, obviously, support the 2nd Amendment) are some of the strongest supporters of environmental regulations. From one of the many sites that come up in a search for “Conservative environmental groups”:

    […] environmental stewardship and natural resource conservation are inherently conservative, and that true conservatives endeavor to be good stewards of the natural systems and resources that sustain life on earth.

    One of the problems of the hyper-partisan nature of today’s politics (and I see it quite frequently in OtB comments directed at James and Stephen) is that the definition of “conservative” has shifted over to “trumpian wing-nut”. You, yourself, admit that Vinick-style conservatives used to be fairly common. And they do still exist–they’re just drowned out by the blather mobs and the hucksters that egg them on.

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  64. Kylopod says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    One of the problems of the hyper-partisan nature of today’s politics (and I see it quite frequently in OtB comments directed at James and Stephen) is that the definition of “conservative” has shifted over to “trumpian wing-nut”.

    But a lot of these tendencies predate the Trump era by a long time. Yes, pro-choice and pro-environment Republican politicians weren’t that uncommon in the not-too-distant past–but most of them didn’t stand a chance in the GOP presidential primary, at least not unless they flip-flopped on those issues like Romney or the older Bush.

    At the time of the show’s final season the pro-choice Rudy Giuliani was seen as a strong contender (and later a front-runner) for the 2008 GOP nomination, but in retrospect it’s questionable if he ever really had a chance–part of the reason for his collapse was that voters just weren’t interested the moment they started paying attention. Yes, people make a big deal out of his supposed unforced error not to contest the early states and to go all in on Florida, but that was just a Hail Mary having to do with the fact that his campaign realized they had no chance in those early states to begin with.

    Vinick is said to have been partially based on John McCain, but McCain was pretty solidly pro-life, and he did shift to the right on a number of issues in order to win the 2008 nomination.

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  65. Kathy says:

    @wr:

    You can’t drink directly from the coffee maker with the overpriced pods 😉 So you’d still have to lug the cup back to the kitchen.

    In 2014 I stayed at the Golden Nugget in Vegas. there was a Keurig machine in the room, as well as a box with 4 pods, sweeteners, cream, and cardboard cups. The box was sealed. Opening up cost you $20. But you could use the machine with your own pods.

    I got some from Walgreen’s, plus some splenda, and a cup, and had coffee in the room every day. I had to wash the cup in the sink, but the room was small and, well, it was a room rather than an apartment.

    I considered buying one for use at home, especially because I found a tiny pod-shaped basket and a set of tiny filters in a kitchen supply store, so I could my own coffee grounds. I thought it still too expensive.

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  66. Jen says:

    @Mu Yixiao: Pro-choice and pro-environmental regulation (please note the very pointed use of the word regulation–it was intentional, because I’m very familiar with the brand of Republicans who consider themselves pro-environment on wilderness conservation issues/topics, which is far different than being in favor of EPA policies) Republicans have always existed. However, they were not considered conservatives *within the Republican party*–at least not during the entire time I was involved with it, from my days as a member of the College Republicans (late 80s), up through my campaign work (early 90s), on through my work in a Republican State Senator’s office (mid-90s).

    Republicans, yes. But “conservatives”? No.

    ReplyReply
  67. Kathy says:

    @CSK:

    Thanks. I will bore you with all the details.

    On lighter topics, I’ve been on a grand Netflix re-watch. It started last month when I re-watched Picard (on Amazon Prime actually, which I think is what Bezos calls his Netflix product), then I moved on to Discovery, then Disenchantment*, and now I’m re-watching The Good Place.

    You know this notion of complete one-season or full series stories is really serious, when even Matt Groening jumps aboard. I wonder if Rick and Morty will follow. I’ll just enjoy it while it lasts.

    *Groening has a big problem taking substance abuse seriously. In every series there are endless jokes about it.

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  68. Jen says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    “You, yourself, admit that Vinick-style conservatives used to be fairly common.”

    No, I said Vinick-style Republicans used to be somewhat common.

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  69. Michael Cain says:

    @gVOR08:

    l hate voting for school board members for fear I’m voting for some closet creationist.

    A few years back a group campaigning together for “high academic standards” won a majority of seats on the school board. After a few months, they took aim at the American History curriculum, shooting for the only-the-white-side, infallible founders, and capitalism over everything story. When the AP people told them they wouldn’t change their course content, the board announced they were going to get rid of AP altogether. This was in a well-to-do suburban district where many kids do AP not just for college admission, but to get “free” credits towards block requirements. A group of parents printed up recall petitions and set up tables outside the public libraries. When I saw the line, it was more than a block long. Took three days to collect enough signatures (most recalls spend three months, and still come up short). All three were tossed. Do not f*ck with the AP curriculum in that sort of district.

    I had voted against them the first time. While the board election is officially non-partisan, a quick check of the county Democratic and Republican web sites for endorsements told you everything necessary.

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  70. Kylopod says:

    @Jen: For much of the 20th century, the phrase “liberal Republican” was pretty commonplace–applied to those like Edward Brooke or Jacob Javits. But it pretty much disappeared by the 1990s. One of the last Republican office-holders to be routinely described as a liberal was Lowell Weicker, and he lost his seat in 1988 (to Joe Lieberman, who ran to Weicker’s right and was endorsed or tacitly supported by much of the GOP at the time). After that, pretty much every elected Republican claimed to be a conservative of some kind; even relative moderates like Arlen Specter weren’t usually called liberals. Bob Dole and John McCain were definitely conservative Republicans, just not strongly enough for the party’s dominant right wing.

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  71. Mu Yixiao says:

    @Jen:

    Republicans, yes. But “conservatives”? No.

    You’re being more granular than I am. I’m looking at it as “This side of the spectrum” and “that side of the spectrum”.

    Then again… there are such things as conservative Democrats.

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  72. Michael Cain says:

    @Kylopod:

    It wasn’t like that before 1992. California and Illinois and New England were considered Republican-leaning up to that point.

    The two great political geography stories of the last 30 years are the huge shift to Republicans in the Midwest, and a corresponding shift to Democrats in the West (Census Bureau definitions for both regions).

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  73. KM says:

    @Kathy:
    If you’ve got Disney+, give Gravity Falls a try, especially if you’re a Rick and Morty fan.

    ReplyReply
  74. Kylopod says:

    @Michael Cain:

    The two great political geography stories of the last 30 years are the huge shift to Republicans in the Midwest, and a corresponding shift to Democrats in the West (Census Bureau definitions for both regions).

    How is that something from the past 30 years? Yes, the Pacific Coast first became solidly Democrat in the 1990s, and Obama was already starting to show gains in the inland West (states like Colorado and New Mexico), but the really big shift–the Midwest toward the Republicans, the leftward shift of Arizona–has happened only since Trump entered the scene. It’s not yet clear if it’s something unique to Trump or part of a larger trend of which he was a beneficiary. Probably it’s a combination.

    I continue to believe that 1992–the point when Dems first became dominant in the Northeast, the Pacific Coast, and the state of Illinois–was one of the most important realigning elections in US history. It’s frequently overlooked, and I think part of the reason is the Perot myth–the belief that Perot split the Republican vote and therefore that most of Clinton’s wins were flukes without any long-term implications.

    I think that, taking a broad view, the basic story is that the 1970s and 1980s–a time of massive Republican landslides–represented the shift of the Southern states away from the Democratic Party, but without the gains in other regions to make up for it–gains that would not start to jell until the 1990s.

    The countering shifts in the Midwest and the Southwest are a much more recent phenomenon, and it’s not clear yet what its long-term implications will be.

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  75. Kathy says:

    @KM:

    I’ve heard that advice before.

    I planned to resubscribe to Disney+ when either the Boba Fet show or the new season of The Mandalorian came out, but given the death of my TV, I may do so after I exhaust Netflix.

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  76. Jen says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    You’re being more granular than I am.

    Well, yes. That comes from having worked in politics where it’s not viewed as a line/spectrum so much as a four-quadrant grid with party affiliation (R or D) on the x-axis, and policy leanings (conservative to liberal) on the y-axis.

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  77. Joe says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    Pro-environmental regulation. I think you’ll find that a lot of conservatives are hunters–and hunters (who, obviously, support the 2nd Amendment) are some of the strongest supporters of environmental regulations.

    For example, the Environmental Protection Act and the EPA were established on Nixon’s watch.

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  78. wr says:

    @Kathy: “You can’t drink directly from the coffee maker with the overpriced pods So you’d still have to lug the cup back to the kitchen.”

    Well, I kind of assumed that you would be getting out of bed eventually. I thought the idea was to have coffee before getting up, not to stay horizontal until the sun went down…

    And yes, the pods are a little more expensive. But now you’re looking for fast, good, convenient AND cheap?

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  79. Kathy says:

    @wr:

    I thought the idea was to have coffee before getting up, not to stay horizontal until the sun went down…

    That depends who else is on the bed, doesn’t it?

    But I must admit that lugging or carrying something “all the way to the kitchen,” means not that the kitchen is too far away, or the objects in question are too heavy, but that once in the kitchen one must wash these utensils. Somehow, the latter seems less of an imposition if the dirty items are in the kitchen already.

    All that said, I rarely brew coffee at home. In order to maximize sleep, I drink a cup of instant (the dirty cup and spoon can wait until I do the dinner dishes in the evening).

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  80. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Kathy: You’ve never heard of Dixie Cups? (These days, I guess they might be Solo Cups, but still…)

    Also, my dad used to drink coffee from a cup that didn’t get washed for months on end. Just sayin…

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  81. dazedandconfused says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:
    I wash my work coffee cup every 6 months…whether it needs it or not.

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  82. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Mu Yixiao: “Conservative Democrats” is a term that describes liberals who try to hold positions that would identify them as “moderates” instead of the socialists who hate America that they really are, so, no, there are no “conservative Democrats.” 😉

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  83. Teve says:

    I’m trying to transition Amazon out of my life, and thanks to friends, I found a really good online seller, Thriftbooks.com. Powell’s has a good online site too, but I already knew about them. I looked up a somewhat uncommon book I’m currently reading, The Outlaw Sea by William Langewiesche, and both sites had it.

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  84. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @dazedandconfused: Exactly!

    ReplyReply
  85. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @CSK: 😉

    @Kathy: I’m not a natural for marketing, but I can smell a moneymaking opportunity here.

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  86. Kathy says:

    @Teve:

    For ebooks and audio books, I recommend Scribd.

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  87. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Mu Yixiao: When the snails start stealing American jobs, it’s time to admit that Americans are just plain lazy.

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  88. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Mu Yixiao: that the definition of “conservative” has shifted over to “trumpian wing-nut”

    Not by me. Those people are anything but conservative. My definition is more along the lines of “one who once to move froward slowly,” not “one who wants to put the darkies back in shackles, the fa**ots back in the closet, and our heads back up our asses.”

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  89. Kathy says:

    More about the Delta variant.

    The good news is that Pfizer’s vaccine has a 96% efficacy in preventing hospitalization. The bad news is that it has an efficacy of between 79% and 88% at preventing infection. The other good news is Pfizer intends to test a variant specific booster perhaps as early as August (sorry, I don’t have the link at hand).

    79% efficacy at preventing infection isn’t bad, if you have a large enough rate of vaccination. As is, we don’t. I will say again: get an N95 or KN95 mask and keep it on, until a large fraction of covidiots get it through their heads their lives are not worthless, or they die off, or get “natural” immunity after a nasty bout of COVID.

    At that, it would be worth comparing the vaccination rates in the US with other countries where 1) vaccines did not get politicized and 2) have an ample supply of vaccines. Say the UK and Israel, for example.

    Mexico has reached 17.5% fully vaccinated as of yesterday. Considering we don’t have an abundance of vaccines, that’s not bad. But since vaccines are controlled by the federal government and given by age groups, I’ve no idea what the vaccination compliance has been among such groups as have had their turn.

    The first was people over 60 and frontline public sector healthcare workers. Next were people between 50-59, then 40-49, and 30-39 will begin soon. Not all the 50-59 people have received both shots, because that depends on which vaccine they got (4 weeks for Pfizer, 8 for AstraZeneca, for instance). If only half of each group got the shots, then we have a problem.

    There are rumors that some employers will begin requiring all their employees be vaccinated as their age group gets their turn, with only medical exceptions allowed. There are also rumors that vaccination certificates will begin to be required for access to certain places or activities, for instance public transportation, once all adult age groups get their turn. We’ll see if any turn out to be true.

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  90. Kylopod says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    Not by me. Those people are anything but conservative.

    I’ve heard this argument a lot from liberals, and I don’t buy it. Partly it’s because I’ve never been one to think of “conservative” and “liberal” as some kind of Platonic ideal–I just think they’re shorthands for the right and left at any particular time, and when you get down to it, there’s always been a reactionary impulse running through conservatism. Conventionally a reactionary is described as someone who wants to turn back the clock whereas a conservative is simply one who’s skeptical of rapid change. In practice, though, what most of conservatism amounts to is an attempt to protect traditional power structures in society–economic or cultural–and to that end the conservative-reactionary divide is a pretty blurry one. Society is always changing, and conservatives are always the ones bitching about it. There is not one point in American history where conservatives have offered anything constructive. Not one. They are always the ones standing in the path of much-needed progress–at best.

    Conservative intellectuals try to put a positive spin on this, but the inherent destructive nature is clear once you look past the rhetoric and examine their actions. Buckley famously described a conservative as someone who stands athwart history and yells “Stop!”–as if that were something worth boasting about rather than a pretty startling confession to be of dubious value to society. But even if you try to justify that stance rhetorically, you can’t get past the fact that Buckley is the same guy who praised Franco and defended American white supremacy and South African apartheid.

    If there is one US president I might describe as a conservative whom I have a fairly positive opinion about, it’s Eisenhower. But it’s funny–he was regarded as a moderate Republican (he even occasionally described himself as a liberal), and in fact in a large way the conservative movement of Buckley was formed as somewhat of a backlash against Eisenhower. And even I don’t think too highly of Ike’s cautious incrementalism, particularly on domestic policy; a liberal would have done more, and better. (And did. Compare the Civil Rights Acts under Eisenhower, to the one passed by LBJ. Yes, that was partly because the earlier ones got neutered by the Southern filibuster, but it’s clear that Ike–who opposed both Truman’s integration order for the military and the Brown decision, though was studious in enforcing both–would never have passed anything remotely as far-reaching as the 1964 bill even if it had been entirely up to him in crafting it.)

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  91. Stormy Dragon says:

    @wr:

    Thought I’d answer MR on today’s forum instead of yesterday’s, where he wrote:

    “I’d like to hear or read progressive explanations of the NYC mayoral primary. Because it seems that rich, white Manhattan was all for the progressive ‘Defund’ candidates because: racism, meanwhile Black and brown voters – you know, the people actually experiencing racism – went strong for the moderate ex-cop.”

    MR’s “Death of the Activists” story also doesn’t explain why Eric Adams barely won while self-declared socialist Jumaane Williams won the public advocate primary by 49 points.

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  92. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Kylopod: but the really big shift–the Midwest toward the Republicans, …… has happened only since Trump entered the scene.

    No. A quick look at electoral maps shows the trends began well before trump.

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  93. CSK says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:
    If you’re talking about the Trumpkins, I don’t think they’re either conservative or Republican, given that they despise any actual conservative or Republican who has the temerity to express even slight distaste for Trump. They don’t have an ideology; they have fanatical loyalty to Trump himself.

    Half of them have managed to convince themselves that he’s a loyal husband, a devoted father, a devote Christian, and a fantastically successful (though entirely ethical) businessman. The other half sees him for what he is–a malevolent, ignorant churl–and loves him precisely for that. They both believe he’s the greatest president ever.

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  94. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @wr: But now you’re looking for fast, good, convenient AND cheap?

    Why not? A girl can dream, can’t she?

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  95. Sleeping Dog says:

    @CSK:

    The format is XXX_XXX@yahoo.com

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  96. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Kylopod: I’ve heard this argument a lot from liberals, and I don’t buy it.

    That’s good, because I’m not selling it.

    Look, my position is pretty simple: Do NOT let Republicans redefine what words mean, because that’s surrendering the battle ground to them. They want to make “conservative” mean “straight white men still calling the shots” because “conservative” is respectable where as “straight white men still calling the shots” is…. Not.

    I’m not going along with it.

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  97. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @CSK: I don’t think they’re either conservative or Republican,

    Well, I can call them Republicans because the party is made up of people who’s beliefs change over time. Just as the DEMs were once the party of Jim Crow but now aren’t, the GOP was once the party of Lincoln and Grant but now aren’t.

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  98. Kylopod says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    No. A quick look at electoral maps shows the trends began well before trump.

    How so? Start with the Midwest. Bill Clinton was the first Democrat in a while to do really well in a number of the Midwestern states. His election established Illinois as a Dem stronghold; Ohio continued its streak as a historical bellwether until 2020, which it had held since 1964; Michigan and Wisconsin would stay in Democratic hands until 2016; Iowa was pretty much a Dem-leaning state from 1988 to 2012, after decades of being GOP-leaning. What on earth are you talking about when you say the Midwest began shifting to the right 30 years ago?

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  99. CSK says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:
    I know, but I think they’d follow along with Trump if he called himself a Proto-Druid. It was the man himself, not any ideas he espoused. I can’t call vilifying Mexicans and women an ideology.

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  100. Kylopod says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    Look, my position is pretty simple: Do NOT let Republicans redefine what words mean, because that’s surrendering the battle ground to them.

    I agree with that in general, and I’ve talked a lot here about the way Republicans use language to their advantage. I just don’t see much of a benefit to arguing that they aren’t “true conservatives,” because then we’re just playing their childish game and, I think, contributing to the myth that Trumpism is some kind of aberration from the historical norm, when practically everything you mentioned that makes them “not conservative” has been true about the party for ages. The last thing I want to do is go along with the project of resuscitating the Republicans of the past–the Reagans, the Bushes, the Romneys–and pretending they weren’t knee-deep in all that shit, when in fact they totally were but knew how to put a respectable face on it. I know that wasn’t your intention, but I’m telling you, arguing that they aren’t “real conservatives” has that effect.

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  101. Jax says:

    Sooooo…..our local (only) bank has a sign on the door, “due to unforeseen circumstances, we will be closed until August 2nd”.

    Also the local Subway shop.

    I can’t find any confirmation yet, anybody want to bet it’s COVID? August 2nd is 10 days isolation/quarantine.

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  102. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Kylopod: First off, the Midwest is ALL I’m talking about (kinda why I only quoted that part of your comment). You said,

    but the really big shift–the Midwest toward the Republicans, …… has happened only since Trump entered the scene.

    I disagreed with that emphasis on trump. It’s just wrong. The trend in the midwest towards the GOP has been evolving for some time. ND, SD, NE, KS, have been GOP states for awhile. MO flipped in 2008. IN in 2012. Come 2016, trump flipped WI, OH, MI, and IA but in 2020 *WI, MI,* and 1 of NE electoral votes flipped back.

    I don’t call a 2 state flip a “really big shift.” Mind you, I still think WI and MI could both become long term GOP states but that moment isn’t here yet and might well go in the other direction.

    ** and yes, I know how narrow the margins were in 2020, they were narrow in 2016 too.

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  103. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Kylopod: but I’m telling you, arguing that they aren’t “real conservatives” has that effect.

    Bullshit.

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  104. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Jax: My wife’s office was closed for one day because it had to be disinfected. Sounds to me like every employee there either has it or is awaiting test results.

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  105. Jax says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: That was my assumption, too. And geez….the bank….how many people go in and out of there a day?!

    No word yet on whether the convenience store the Subway is located in will be closing for that long, other than that the whole building will be closed until Monday the 26th. Maybe they just have to disinfect, and it’s all the Subway people down with it.

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  106. Kylopod says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    The trend in the midwest towards the GOP has been evolving for some time. ND, SD, NE, KS, have been GOP states for awhile.

    “Awhile” is WAY longer than 30 years. They’ve been pretty much GOP-leaning states for their entire existence. Since Woodrow Wilson, they’ve only voted Democrat THREE times–in FDR’s first two landslides, and for LBJ in 1964. Literally, that’s it.

    MO flipped in 2008.

    MO has always been somewhat of a Southern-Midwestern hybrid, and I’d argue that it was trending away from the Dems decades before the 1990s as part of the shift of Southern states toward the GOP, but retained its bellwether status because the only Dems to win the presidency between Kennedy and Obama were Southern Dems (LBJ, Carter, and Clinton), and even then, Obama came within 4,000 votes of carrying it in 2008.

    But, again, you said “30 years.” MO only lost its bellwether status in 2008 (marginally) and then turned hard right in the coming years. That’s little over a decade ago, not 30 years.

    IN in 2012.

    Huh? Indiana’s been about as historically Republican as the Plains states; Obama was the first Dem to carry it since LBJ, and that was due to a combination of a very good election cycle for Dems and really good turnout in the Chicago area.

    Come 2016, trump flipped WI, OH, MI, and IA but in 2020 *WI, MI,* and 1 of NE electoral votes flipped back.

    How does that support your argument that the shift has been occurring since long before Trump?

    I don’t call a 2 state flip a “really big shift.”

    It isn’t just two states–it’s also Iowa and Ohio. Also, even though Wisconsin and Michigan flipped back to Biden, they still voted more Republican than the national vote, when they’d been pretty consistently more Democratic than the nation prior to 2016.

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  107. Jax says:

    Confirmed. It’s COVID.

    Mannnnn, my kids are gonna be SOOOOO pissed when I curtail their fair activities and make them wear a mask!

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  108. Jen says:

    @Kylopod:

    What on earth are you talking about when you say the Midwest began shifting to the right 30 years ago?

    As someone who worked in Republican politics in Missouri after the 1992 elections, I can say for certainty that it started then. Mel Carnahan won the governorship of MO, and appointed a bunch of Democrats to positions across state government. Republicans ran in those special elections, and won virtually all of them. I’ll repeat that: Republicans won almost every seat vacated by a Democrat. That started the move towards Missouri being a “red” state. It didn’t actually become one for a while, but that was absolutely the tipping point. Bob Griffin almost had his speakership upended from him during that unsettled period. Republicans won seat after seat, and held them during the next election cycle. 1994 was a bloodbath for Democrats at the federal level. Republicans kept their eyes on ONE thing: getting positioned for redistricting in 2000. That was the focus, and they frankly crushed it in Missouri. Now, Democrats can win in Missouri–Jay Nixon has won repeatedly, and Jason Kander came close. But 1992 was when the tide turned.

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  109. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Jax: Covid would be my guess. I’ll also say that, depending on who is the subject of the “unforeseen circumstances,” 14 days may well be optimistic. (In a pinch, I’m able to do online banking but try to avoid it.)

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  110. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Jax: Yeah, but when they’re parents, they’ll get it. In the meantime remember that we all got your back. 😉

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  111. Kylopod says:

    @Jen:

    As someone who worked in Republican politics in Missouri after the 1992 elections, I can say for certainty that it started then.

    I appreciate your offering this info, but I’ll reiterate what I said in my response to OzarkHillbilly: MO has long been somewhat of a hybrid state politically and culturally, with a historical connection to the South, having been a border state during the Civil War, and I think its bellwether status was kept alive artificially by the fact that for several decades after the ’60s the only Dems to capture the presidency were Southern Dems. I don’t think it can really be placed in the same category politically as states like Iowa, Wisconsin, Michigan, or Ohio.

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  112. Kathy says:

    @Kathy:

    And here’s the link to the efficacy of Pfizer an AstraZeneca against Delta

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  113. Jax says:

    My Mom and I were just running through all of the probable super-spreader events this weekend alone….There’s what’s presumed to be a very large, standing-room only funeral Saturday for a “pillar of the community”, the volunteer fire department is having their annual fundraiser (catfish fry, dozens of tables with everybody elbow to elbow in waves for 6 hours, plus kids crammed together on the back of the fire truck for rides around town), the brand new baseball fields are having their grand opening, and there’s another very large wedding reception planned for the daughter of another pillar of the community, and county fair check-in starts Monday.

    We’re hosed.

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  114. Teve says:


    I Tried to Make Claims About Election Fraud So Preposterous Trump Fans Wouldn’t Believe Me. It Was Impossible.
    He would up getting retweeted by Mike Flynn’s brother as Proof of the election fraud.

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  115. Teve says:

    @repswalwell

    The House voted 407-16 to pass the ALLIES Act to help Afghans who face retribution for aiding our troops. The 16 nays, all from @HouseGOP:
    Biggs
    Boebert
    Brooks
    DesJarlais
    Duncan
    Good
    Gosar
    Greene
    Hern
    Hice
    Massie
    Moore
    Perry
    Posey
    Rosendale
    Roy

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  116. Kathy says:

    And this is one reason they have fire trucks at airports:

    Incident: UPS B748 at Hong Kong on Jul 20th 2021, engine fire

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  117. Teve says:

    @Kathy: it came down at 426t, but the MLW is 350t, I wonder if that was enough to bork the wings?

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  118. Kathy says:

    @Teve:

    There are procedures for overweight landing, which depend on several factors like plane type, specific circumstances, length of the runway, weather, etc. You expect damage to the tires.

    The 747 can dump fuel, but that’s not a good idea when the engine is on fire. Ditto for flying a holding pattern to burn off fuel. the risk of an overweight landing is the smallest.

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