Tuesday, November 25, 2014

We Just Had A Seinfeld Election

Republicans worst fears were confirmed Thursday night. Barack Obama is still president and will be president for the next two years. Republicans are also leaning the bitter lesson that there is no such thing as lame duck as long as the president has veto power. What was supposed to be a time of electoral triumph for John Boehner and Mitch McConnell has quickly turned into the first test of whether the GOP can govern.

It wasn’t supposed be this way. On Election night, McConnell extended a hand of cooperation to Obama. The next day, McConnell made it clear that government shutdowns and playing with the debt ceiling were off the table. Boehner also reached out to Obama in the name of the American people wanting both parties to work together. All was for naught as Obama dismissed the election results and, figuratively, kicked sand in their faces.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

More Than Just A Pair Of Pink Shoes

The articles keep on coming. One after another pointing out what went wrong with the Wendy Davis campaign. Chock-full of advice about how she could have won.

The consensus seems to be that she needed to be more "centrist". Wendy made funding public education the centerpiece of her agenda. Is there a more "centrist" issue than promoting public education? It is such a "centrist" issue that Greg Abbott also ran on promoting public education.

Let's be clear. To have a remote chance at winning, Wendy would have had to dress up in camo, pick up an AR-15 and head to the Texas-Mexico border. Only after apprehending a couple of unauthorized immigrants trying to sneak into the United States could Wendy make the case that she is not a flaming liberal bent on turning Texas into the dreaded California. In other words, Wendy Davis never had a chance.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Finding Common Ground With Putin

When the Crimean crisis broke out this past winter, the White House's favorite talking point, at the time, was that Vladimir Putin needed an "exit ramp". The Obama Administration either believed - or was trying to spin - the Russian stealth invasion of Crimea as impulsive act on the part of Putin. All that was needed to resolve the crisis was to provide some face saving measure for Russia. Even German Chancellor Angela Merkel joined in the "Putin-doesn't-know-what-he-is-doing" chorus.

Six months later, the conflict in Ukraine opened a new front this past week and over the weekend Putin called for negotiations  on the "political organisation of society and statehood for southeastern Ukraine." It is quite clear that Putin's actions were never the result of impulsive or irrational behavior. He is an opportunist who saw the chance to expand the territory of the Russian Federation and took it. It is also clear that Obama and Europe are the ones who need an "exit ramp".

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Making John Wiley Price Stronger

Well, that was stupid. Commissioner Mike Cantrell's resolution calling for a suspension of fellow Commissioner John Wiley Price failed to even make it to a vote. Cantrell - the only Republican on the Dallas County Commissioners Court - failed to get a second on the motion. Of course, the hardcore Dallas County GOP partisans will claim that it was a worthwhile pursuit because it shows that Democrats don't care about ethics. Some would even go as far as claiming that, by not supporting the resolution, it shows that Democrats are a corrupt lot. Pure nonsense. If anything, this entire non event only made John Wiley Price stronger.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

The EU Has Become A Destabilizing Force

About six months ago, German Chancellor Angela Merkel spoke before the British Parliament. During her speech, she praised the European Union (EU) for bringing reconciliation, peace and prosperity to Europe. She referred to it as a "miracle" and proceeded to give credit to "policies by far sighted and responsible statesmen such as Winston Churchill, Charles De Gaulle and Konrad Adenauer." No mention of the role the United States played in rebuilding and maintaining the peace in Western Europe after the end of World War II.

This is typical of Europeans. For years they have bragged about their superior social safety net and looked down on America for not doing the same for its citizens completely oblivious of the fact that if it weren't for the United States underwriting their security they could not have been so generous with their people. Had the United States chosen to follow the same path it did after the First World War, it is very likely that war would have returned to Western Europe. But Europeans will go on congratulating themselves for maintaining a peace they could never achieve on their own for centuries. They even gave themselves a Nobel Peace Prize for it.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Hillary The Gaffeur

As a First Lady, Hillary Rodham Clinton is a woman of many firsts. The first to be elected to the United States Senate. The first to run for the White House. And, the first to become Secretary of State. This year, she has recorded another first. That is, the first truly disastrous book tour by a First Lady.  Actually, make that public official. Even Todd "Legitimate Rape" Akin is having a smoother book tour than Hillary.

But that's what is peculiar about Hillary. She is always much more likable, popular when she is away from the limelight. As soon as she takes the center stage, everyone is reminded of one basic fact about Hillary: she has ZERO political talent. On paper she is a formidable candidate. On the campaign trail, she is a gaffe machine, always has been and, in all likelihood, always will be.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Rand Paul's 'Macaca' Moment

The pundit class can't get enough. During a stop in Iowa, Rand Paul hastily left the scene when activists Erika Andiola and Cesar Vargas confronted Rep. Steve King. Let's roll the tape:

Sunday, August 3, 2014

How The GOP Can Win Me Back

Election Day must be getting closer. How do we know? Calls for Republicans to unite are more frequent and louder. After spending months tearing each other apart; the Tea Party determined to purge the RINOs; the GOP establishment vowing to crush the Tea Party; all of must be forgotten; set aside in order to defeat the Democrats.

With each call for unity, old, worn out to the point of disintegration clichés are trotted out as if they were a revelation. The Buckley Rule of voting for the most conservative candidate that can win is regurgitated. And of course, Ronald Reagan is once again enlisted by repeating his famous quote “The person who agrees with you 80 percent of the time is a friend and an ally – not a 20-percent traitor.” Groan.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

A Country Of Virgin Births

For the last few days, I have seen the headline "I’ve worked at McDonald’s for 10 years and still make $7.35 an hour" floating around social media. Today, I finally decided to click on it and read the story's contents. It was about making the case for a higher minimum wage. No surprise here.

What caught my attention was the final paragraph:
"I've worked at McDonald's for 10 years and still make $7.35 an hour - only pennies above the federal minimum wage. My four girls deserve better. I deserve better. McDonald's and other fast-food companies are going to learn that when you aren't paid enough to survive, you're willing to do whatever it takes, for as long as it takes, until you are treated fairly."

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Boehner's Lawsuit Is The Least Bad Of All The Options

On Thursday, the House Rules Committee approved a resolution authorizing filing a lawsuit against Obama over his use of executive power. The vote was along partisan lines to the surprise of no one. Democrats labeled the lawsuit a "political stunt" from the moment John Boehner announced it and there is no indication that they will change their minds on the subject. The House is expected to vote on the measure next week and, again, the vote will probably be along partisan lines with the exception of a few endangered incumbents.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Hobby Lobby Is Not A Narrow Decision

It is déjà vu all over again. Two years ago, the Supreme Court ruled Obamacare constitutional and we had to endure commentary declaring it a victory for conservatism. It was not. Two years later, the Court rules in favor of Hobby Lobby and once again we have to endure commentary celebrating fiction. Frustrating.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Libertarian Pundit Blames Ronald Reagan For The Ukraine Crisis

His frustration was clearly visible. “We should have never fought the Cold War. “ said libertarian pundit "Liberty For Me, But Not For Thee". Sitting in his office just outside the beltway, the influential blogger agreed to speak to TPF after repeated requests. Asked whether TPF's unapologetic neoconservatism was behind his reluctance to grant an interview, he replied, "Not at all. You are wrong and I don't mind tell you that."

Thursday, June 12, 2014

The Tea Party Is Alive And Kicking

It was supposed to be Lindsey Graham’s big night. His decisive victory was going to be held as evidence that the GOP establishment had finally “crushed” the Tea Party.That was a plan anyway until Eric Cantor lost his seat to political novice David Brat. Abruptly, the Chamber of Commerce had to cancel its victory lap; talk radio rejoiced; and, the Democrats could hardly contain their glee as they feigned concern for our democracy now that one of the two major parties has been taken over by “extremists”.

Monday, March 10, 2014

If Politics Does Not Like Losers....

This morning Senator Mitch McConnell is quoted in the New York Times as saying, "I know this: Politics doesn’t like losers." In that case, why is Mitch McConnell still around? Why is Reince Priebus still around? Why are John McCain, Paul Ryan still around? Why is the entire GOP leadership that failed to win control of the Senate and White House still around?

Sunday, March 9, 2014

When Will The GOP Establishment Take Responsibility?

Speaking on opening day of the annual CPAC meeting, Paul Ryan tried to minimize the GOP divide by comparing it to an Irish family reunion. He characterized the infighting that is convulsing the party as “vibrant debate” and “creative tension”. However, Ryan’s valiant effort came crashing down on the final day of the conference when the results of the straw poll were announced and it was revealed that 51% of CPAC attendees disapprove of the job Republicans are doing in Congress.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Should Have Listened to the RINO

They are falling down like dominoes. The latest domino to fall is the state of Texas. Yesterday, federal judge Orlando Garcia ruled the Texas same-sex marriage ban unconstitutional.  Not only are the dominoes falling; but, there are doing so at warp speed.

Since June 2013 - when the United States v. Windsor decision declaring sections of DOMA unconstitutional was announced - there have been several rulings striking down state same-sex marriage bans including in the deep red states like Utah and Oklahoma; and the dominoes will continue to fall until same-sex marriage will be legal in all 50 states.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Life on Planet Pelosi

Prior to their two day retreat, Nancy Pelosi and the Democratic House leadership held a press conference outlining their policy agenda for the remainder of year. It was the usual Democratic fare: 1) raising the minimum wage (If only we could wipe out poverty with a stroke of the presidential pen!); 2) equal pay for equal work (Didn’t Obama already fix this by signing the Lilly Ledbetter Act? I mean that’s what he said in 2012); 3) paid sick leave; 4) extending emergency unemployment benefits; and 5) immigration reform.

Monday, February 10, 2014

A Reality Based Conversation About Immigration

A week after announcing their guiding principles, House Republicans retreated and postponed their effort to reform the country’s immigration system. John Boehner, bless his heart, tried his best to blame Barack Obama for the GOP’s latest self-inflicted wound. To his credit, he managed to keep a straight face while declaring, "There's widespread doubt about whether this administration can be trusted to enforce our laws and it's going to be difficult to move any immigration legislation until that changes.” 

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Bill Nye vs. Ken Ham: A Pointless Debate

It is hard to believe that nearly 89 years after the Scopes Monkey trial (The State of Tennessee v. John Thomas Scopes), we are still debating evolution in this country. The latest round of  this seemingly perennial debate happened this week. The same themes were rehashed. Once again, viewers were asked to choose faith over science or vice versa. Once again, individuals firmly planted on each side of the debate talked pass each other. Two and half hours later and both sides claimed victory.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Five Ways The GOP Can Fight The War On Women

If you first don't succeed, try and try again. At least that's how the saying goes. And Republican strategists have tried and tried to find a way to blunt what has been a very effective attack from the Democrats, the so called "War on Women".

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

The Big Winner Last Night Was Battleground Texas

The only hot button social issue missing from last night's Texas Lt. Governor Republican primary debate was same sex marriage. Otherwise, the crazy train ride into far right Republican primary politics was complete. If nothing else, last night proved that limiting the number of Republican primary debates won't make a bit of difference as long as GOP policy stances remain unchanged. Whether the RNC allows one or 30 presidential primary debates in 2016, Republican candidates will face questions about abortion, immigration, creationism. All the issues that cause Republican nominees problems in the general election.

But I digress. Back to Texas.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Welcome To The Ditchers Club, Jimmy!

For those who don't know, The Ditchers Club is an informal group on Facebook made up of individuals who threw their hands up and left the Republican Party. Some of us were more active than others in GOP grassroots. But the common bond that unites us is realizing that trying to change the Republican Party from within is a hopeless cause. Thus, we "ditched" the party.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Is This All The TX GOP Has On Wendy?

Clearly, Wendy Davis' fundraising ability has put a little fear in the usually confidence oozing Texas Republicans. For the first time in quite sometime, Texas Democrats have a candidate with a high name ID; able to bring in the cash; and, receiving national media attention. The long knives were bound to come out. And that is just what happened a few days ago when the Dallas Morning News published a piece suggesting that Ms Davis blurred "key facts" about her life story.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Chris Christie Shows How It Is Done

How refreshing! A public official holding his team accountable. No making excuses. No shifting blame or trying to create a distraction hoping that the media will take the bait. No allowing the person to resign or take early retirement. Nope. Just a straight out firing. Refreshing and politically smart.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Let Them Govern!

Can it be that it was all so simple then?
Or has time re-written every line?
If we had the chance to do it all again
Tell me, would we? Could we?"
                      ~ Lyrics from "The Way We Were"

Is my memory failing me or was there a time in American politics when the winners of elections were given a chance to govern? Policies were allowed to be implemented before declaring them a failure? When we were not in a perpetual campaign cycle? A time when political opponents were cautious in their allegations and did not pounce on any excuse to allege malfeasance?