Will Rogers Was Right About The Democrats

Here are a couple of quotes from the inestimable Will Rogers. They were made so long ago, and are still so spot on correct:

“I’m not a member of any organized political party…. I’m a Democrat.”

“Democrats never agree on anything, that’s why they’re Democrats. If they agreed with each other, they’d be Republicans.”

Both are still so evidently true. Watching this morning’s “impeachment hearing” makes me want to puke. It is one of the most incompetent shit shows in history. The House Democrats, as led by Nancy Pelosi, and in this case Jerry Nadler too, could not legally litigate or argue their way out of a thin and wet paper sack. It is seriously pathetic and embarrassing.

Daniel Goldman is a tad better than Nadler and Barry Berke were, but the format is still ludicrous.

Probably we should talk about Hunter Biden more. Because members of corporate boards are NEVER hired for their names as opposed to expertise. Maybe cross-reference Theranos, but whatever.

Pelosi and Nadler have turned impeachment into such a craven shit and clown show that it is unbearable.

74 replies
  1. Badger Robert says:

    Is the House’s water torture of the disintegrating Donald Trump? My hypothesis is they aren’t trying to win in the Senate, they are trying to accelerate Trump’s decline. (Good morning.)

    • bmaz says:

      Top of the day to you Robert. If there was such a slow water torture effort to be played out since, as you note there will never be a Senate conviction, Pelosi and the House Democrats are screwing the pooch as maximally as they possibly can.

      • Badger Robert says:

        You have more trial experience than I ever had, but I doubt that the noisy protests of the Rs are as effective as they think they are. Trump may like that show. But I think Shakespeare may have covered what actually happens: I think the Lady doth protest too much.
        The big fights occur over the most damaging evidence.

        • Cavenewt says:

          Doesn’t matter. It’s all about the theater aimed at the base. As long as 55% of the Republican base say they’ll support Trump no matter what he does, and the Rs are too spineless to put oath above party, effectively Trump is a king, above the law.

          • BobCon says:

            Just as much, they’re testing the media’s willingness to present the Democratic motivation as partisanship, with an eye toward neutralizing unmotivated voters.

            Trump won in 2016 in large part because low information and procrastinating voters swung to him in the last few days before election day. Comey news was a major part of that swing.

            Politics desks know this is a Trump strategy again, but they will never, ever acknowledge it because it would mean admitting that reporters and editors are making intentional coverage choices that favor one side, despite what they claim.

          • Mainmata says:

            Are vast majorities of Trump’s base watching this minute-by-minute? I doubt they’re paying any attention to the process at all. The only people following this live are retired/unemployed Democrats and the media. Which is not say it is not legitimate, of course. It definitely is since Trump is a big time and long time criminal.

      • Nicholas Litwin says:

        I agree! I believe Pelosi thinks she is the smartest person in the room, but I really question that. She has the experience, but I think she has lost touch. She originally had the committees investigating Trump to slow-walk the process. Now she is ramming things through. There are so many possible positives that are on the verge of seeing the light of day. Information that will further convince the public Trump is a criminal, which will put pressure on the Senate, even if it doesn’t change the outcome.

  2. Rapier says:

    I think your making the case that representative Democracy is a farce. It certainly will never deliver a trial like verdict within the form of a congressional hearing, I’m not watching mind you just peeking at Marcy’s liveblog, I think it is par for the course, not some historic low shit show. Well par for the course at this time where total nonsense and non sequiturs, the Chewbacca defense writ large, are allowed free reign. In court that hasn’t been flying to well but what are Democrats supposed to do in a hearing about it?

  3. timbo says:

    It’s pretty stupid what we’re seeing today in the Judiciary committee. Because what we really see here today is the hobbling of our own House representatives to actually get the evidence fully aired and the cases for impeachment before them fully explored. This only benefits Trump, the GOP know nothings, and the cynical immoral supporters that the GOP pays to magnify the Trump regimes lies.

    • timbo says:

      I suppose one could argue that this poorly thought out hearing today is a poor-man’s ‘practice trial’ prior to the charges being forwarded to the Senate for the actual trial.

      • Mainmata says:

        So Trump gets to defy all subpoenas and all the material evidence therefore Impeachment is wrong? GOP Kangaroo Court not Democratic cluelessness.

  4. MissyDC says:

    Utter incompetence since Nadler’s portion took over. I thought Schiff did OK but would have liked hearings to have gone longer. The GOP knows all they need to do is throw bombs. Dem leadership has failed us. Disappointed is an understatement.

    • Jplm says:

      I thought one of the reasons to draw up articles was to end the Judiciary element of the proceedings asap and for good reason. Chairman Nadler wields all the authority of a substitute teacher and just can’t keep the naughty kids in check.

    • e.a.f. says:

      Its not so much that the “Dems leadership has failed us”, but rather Americans have failed themselves. One has to only look at the protestors in Hong Kong and then look at the lack of protests in the U.S.A. regarding all that has gone on since Trump took office. The Yellow Vests in France have protested for months, what are Americans doing? Not much from what I can see.

      People ought not to wait for politicians to “fix” things, but rather they ought to get out into the streets and engage in protests, keep it peaceful, but protest. Its the right and proper thing to do when your country is being dismantled and your democracy is being destroyed by an orange idiot.

      • MissyDC says:

        Those examples don’t work in the USA. We are too big, too spread out. And while I think protests in the US serve a purpose, they won’t move the needle in Congress. We need our elected officials to recognize that the GOP will not play but the rules, and adjust our tactics accordingly. Look how KaTie Porter and AOC conduct hearings. Or Harris in the Senate. Nadler bumbled his way through the sh!t show and let the GOP dictate the narrative.

        Like it our not, politics is part theater/sales.

  5. Katherine M Williams says:

    “Dem leadership has failed us”

    I don’t thing we (American people) are who they’re really working for. So depressing. I can not believe democratic leadership is as stupid and inept as they appear. They’re deliberately throwing the game.

    • timbo says:

      Every time I watch the members of Congress, the press, etc reinforce the notion that there are only two viable political parties in this country it is completely appalling to me.

      • P J Evans says:

        It’s true – one of the effects of our first-past-the-post (FPTP) voting system.

        People have been studying various voting systems for decades. None are perfect; all can be gamed in some way. I’m also familiar with preferential balloting, and while it gets some kind of consensus, it’s hard to get people to use.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      But, but, but Joe Biden thinks we need a strong Republican Party now, to keep Democrats in check. Gosh, what would Democrats do with a weak opposition party? Apart from argue amongst themselves.

      Dear Joe, the Republicans are doing fine, thanks. Worry about the Dems. My suggestion is that you put off that burning concern of yours, Joe, until Dems have control of the White House, both houses of Congress, regain some sense of balance at the Supremes and among the federal judiciary, outlaw rampant gerrymandering, and revivify federal agencies – especially research and law-based agencies – after their journey through the Trump underworld.

      With luck and a lot of work, Joe, that gives you ten to fifteen years to think about it.

    • BobCon says:

      I think it’s more complicated than that, I think what we’re seeing is an attempt by Pelosi et al to win. However, that raises the question of what victory means.

      I think the old guard maintains an overly optimistic view of the GOP as rational actors and American politics as being transformable by incremental change. I think there is also far too much faith in Bill Clinton style triangulation, as if the right wing hasn’t adapted its tactics since 1999.

      What that means is that you are often seeing greater ire from the Democratic establishment aimed at activists like AOC, Warren and Sanders than at McConnell and McCarthy, because the activists openly talk of trashing the incrementalist approach that favors insiders. McConnell and McCarthy at least pay lip service to the old system, even if they are lying through their teeth.

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        Someone on a much earlier thread brought up the quip by Max Planck, that science advances one funeral at a time. As once dominant figures and their acolytes recede, their absence reopens debate and allows room for once-rejected ideas and perspectives to vie for a new dominance.

        It might be applicable to the Democratic establishment. It seems controlled by those who prefer centrist Clintonian incrementalism. As they pass from power, so might their control. But that’s optimistic. It does not take into account a deep bench of Democratic conservatism, or the continuity and control of the party’s wealthiest backers.

        Will Rogers’s notion of a Democratic Party in conflict with itself will continue to apply.

        • Mainmata says:

          Wow, this is a thread that clearly ignores the votes of Millennials and Gen Zs and assumes Congressional Democrats are all corrupt. This is seriously out of touch with Democratic voters.

  6. Mitch Neher says:

    Chuck the Democrats overboard–STAT.

    That’ll teach ’em all who they’ve really been messing with all along.

    Yeeeee! Haaaaaw!

  7. P J Evans says:

    I’ve been following ew’s Twitter today.
    It has me wondering if there’s a maximum IQ limit for the GOP-T.

    • Cathy says:

      My hope is the performances speak more to their understanding of the IQ limit of their intended audience. And I submit calling out that audience as the Republican base (from upthread) is too inclusive – the performances suggest it is an audience of exactly one.

      But then I see Rep. Jordan in action and find my hopes strewn about me in tatters. :-)

  8. Matthew Harris says:

    Here are my list of who is to blame for Trump escaping consequences, in order of their culpability in avoiding reality:

    1. The truly insane fringe that literally believes that what Trump was doing in Ukraine was because him, and John F Kennedy Jr, living in secret, want to arrest Hunter Biden for his part in an international child adrenochrome smuggling ring.
    2. The Republicans who really believe that an authoritarian leader using the powers of his office for personal gain is okay.
    3. The Republicans who know it is wrong but think that getting tax cuts is worth it.
    4. The 6-8% of voters in the middle who think that Trump did something unusual, but cynically think it is not that far from normal.

    10. The Democratic leadership, representatives from swing districts, and normal voters who think that Trump committed a crime, but are not being strident enough in calling for his impeachment.

    If 75% of the country supported impeachment and removal, then I would say that yes, the Democratic Leadership was being incompetent and tardy in getting this done. If 60% of the country supported impeachment and removal, then I would also believe that. But according to what I have read, a small plurality of the country (48% vs. 44%) supports impeachment, and the Democrat’s course probably reflects that.

    The culpability doesn’t lie with Nancy Pelosi. The culpability lies with the fact that 30-40% of the country is still actively supporting Trump at various levels of insanity, and 10-20% of the country is shrugging its shoulders and saying “whatever”.

    • Matthew Harris says:

      Oh shit, and on my list, I even forgot the Denialist Left. There is still a considerable chunk of Democrats that believe, more or less, that since Flint has drinking water problems, therefore Putin is a good person.

      Back when I was using Facebook, that was an argument I actually heard from a subset of leftists: how could the United States criticize Russia for using chemical weapons against children in Syria when the people of Flint don’t have clean drinking water? Checkmate, Centrist Corporate Democrats!

      There are about 20 different types of reality-avoiding bullshit going on in our culture right now, and the fact that Nancy Pelosi doesn’t have a magic wand to convince obstinate people that crimes are in fact crimes doesn’t reflect badly on her.

        • Thebuzzardman says:

          Well. I should have googled this first. What I assumed was a snarky remark referencing Hunter S Thompson turns out to be a thing X amount of people actually believe. No doubt it’s origin comes from “Fear & Loathing” but has turned into some kind of urban legend these batsh*t crazy idiots believe. Wow.

    • MB says:

      Hey, I must not be up on my fringe conspiracy theories, but what do international children and adrenochrome smuggling have to do with each other? That kids were the mules?

      • P J Evans says:

        I don’t know – I avoid CT sites – but I have the impression that they think the drug is produced from smuggled children.

      • Matthew Harris says:

        I am sorry to ruin your innocence, nothing that simple.

        A large part of the QAnon conspiracy theory is that Hillary Clinton and company are literally Satanists who ritually murder children, because the fear produces a hormone called “adrenochrome” that they take to gain superpowers.

        So, it might seem obvious to people here that Nancy Pelosi is a corporate-friendly moderate who doesn’t want to rock the boat, but there are dozens of millions of Americans who believe that Nancy Pelosi is a hardcore communist who wants to turn the United States into Venezuela, and those people are the *rational* ones, compared to the several millions of Americans who believe that Nancy Pelosi and Hillary Clinton literally wear human skins together.

        When I look at Pelosi’s actions from the vantage point of the nation’s current political climate, and not from the vantage point of “Why doesn’t she just wave her magic wand?” her efforts at cat herding are admirable.

        • MB says:

          Innocence ruined! That’s OK though. But now you bring up another one I don’t understand: “Nancy Pelosi and Hillary Clinton literally wear human skins together”? Another innocence-rending explanation required here, as my knowledge of QAnon theories comes from mainstream media, not from the crazies themselves…

          • MB says:

            Slightly OT, but since we’re speaking of far-out conspiracy theories: I had a “friend” send me a clearly-obvious fake news piece to my private messagebox on FB in 2016. It involved Obama having gone missing because a guy who was a pilot for him while he was president was also friends with the Las Vegas shooter. Ever hear that one?

            As it turned out, Obama turned up in New Jersey to stump for a congressional candidate there a couple of weeks later, so his “disappearance” was rather short-lived.

              • MB says:

                I dunno, but it appears that any far-fetched connection based in reality is as good a jumping-off point for a fictional political tale as anything else.

                I wrote an angry DM to my “friend” (somebody I knew in high school, but who I had been out of touch with for 40 years) telling him that there was enough fake news out there to contend with without having a friend send me fake news direct to my FB message box. This resulted in an angry phone call 15 minutes after I sent this and it didn’t go well. We haven’t spoken since.

              • LeeNLP says:

                Homo sapiens is a species of large-brained ape, with thumbs and language. The “sapiens” part is a misnomer. Plato’s “featherless biped” is more apt than Aristotle’s “rational animal”, I’m afraid.

                The Russians and the GOP have learned to capitalize and monetize on human ignorance. It’s an open question how it will all turn out.

                • Mitch Neher says:

                  That’s not Plato’s statement.

                  It belongs to Diogenes of Cynope–who plucked the feathers off a chicken and tossed it over the wall into the courtyard at Plato’s Academe.

                  Also, you omitted the specific difference between the plucked chicken versus Man–a featherless biped with toenails–that might have been added by one of the students in the courtyard.

                  • Mitch Neher says:

                    Actually, the definition was attributed to Plato.

                    Diogenes gets credit for the refutation.

                    I’m plucking my toenails presently.

    • Hika says:

      The solution to getting that 20% in the middle to pay attention and take Trump and his gang’s crimes more seriously isn’t to fold up the tent and send the circus on to the next town. It’s to keep playing, performing the favorite pieces every day and night while also adding new spectacular performances (and we know there’s plenty of other material to work with).

      Maya Angelou told us that when someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.
      Back in 2007 Mike Stark asked Pelosi about impeachment and got (inter alia) the reply: “The President isn’t worth it…he’s not worth impeaching. We’ve got important work to do.”
      The follow up question was: “Respectfully, the question is whether or not the Constitution is worth it?”
      Nancy Pelosi’s reply: “Well, yeah, the constitution is worth it if you can succeed.”
      Given that the House’s important work of passing bills just adds to the stack of stuff that McConnell refuses to look at, what pressing business are the House Democrats in a hurry to do, if not holding a lawless executive to account?
      The *only* other pressing engagement I can think of would be the impeachment of Trump’s cabinet. Every one of them has committed impeachable offenses. Put W. Barr at the top of the list.

      To those knowledgeable about the Constitution, does the passing of a Bill of Impeachment have any lasting effect on the handling of Presidential pardons? Could this unseemly rush be to forestall or invalidate pardons? Or is it yet another sweep under the carpet for the continuance of business as much as possible as usual?

  9. OldTulsaDude says:

    The GOP has formed an alliance with Russia while portraying anyone who is opposed to them – including the 63 million who voted for Hillary – as the enemy. This is an onslaught of fascistic fanaticism that may be a greater threat than the old USSR

    • Hika says:

      Just a nit-pick about your voting figure. Trump got 63 million votes. Hillary got 65.8 million. Yeah, that doesn’t matter because of the electoral college, but it’s still 2.8 million more (relatively) sane Americans.

  10. earlofhuntingdon says:

    For Trump, losing an election or complying with constitutionally mandated term limits amounts to a coup. The Republican Party will back him in that criminal fantasy.

    Democrats need to prepare their action plan. Joe Biden’s fantasies aside, this is not the Republican Party of either Nixon or Reagan, and they did some pretty illegal shit, too.

  11. fpo says:

    I hate to think where we’d be if certain Dems hadn’t pushed this process forward, flawed though it may be. Virtually everything we know about the truth of Trump’s behaviour while in office comes courtesy the Dems – and a handful of courageous civil servants and journalists. While the outcome of this impeachment process seems certain, I hesitate to judge half the country (45%) based on the incomprehensible actions of a handful of privileged, wealthy and power-hungry politicians – most of them Republicans, in this instance – and presume that they’ll all pull the R levers again in 2020. How many Republican “heroes” have emerged through all this? I can’t think of one. Will Rogers may have been right, but he’s also dead.

  12. Geoguy says:

    It seems as if we are watching professional wrestling. I don’t follow the WWE except as a bad business model for the performers. As Katherine M. Williams noted above, it does seem as if the Democrats are deliberately throwing the game. The following quote is from an article from the Boston Globe, June 11, 2016 titled “Ex-wrestlers say one of their own sells them short.” The article is about Chris Nowinski and his Concussion Legacy Foundation, (an entire subject by it self.) The quote? “Nowinski twice won WWE’s Hardcore championship, although the victories were all but ensured. Professional wrestling operates in a realm between fiction and reality. Matches are scripted, the winners preordained, and the violance orchestrated to produce the greatest theatrical impact while limiting pain to performers, enen as they feign agony. But repetitive impacts to the head are all but inevitable…”

  13. Ckymonstaz says:

    Things are far different today with the internet than they were when Clinton was over the barrel and even more so compared to Nixon’s time in it

    As clueless, inept and corrupt as the corporate sponsored democratic leadership is and has been for decades…and as pathetic and pointless as these shit show hearings are I’m not sure there is any approach or format that could have made much difference

    Ailes and the rest of his ilk created Fox news specifically to make sure future GOP presidents wouldn’t be held accountable for their crimes and it’s providing exactly the cover the mconnell’s of the world need to let Trump off and flood their base with endless BS soundbites and disinformation to spread

    Any chance Democrats had of holding Trump accountable shriveled when they let him march into office with obvious emoluments clause violations and proceeded to watch him appoint his idiot children to his cabinet and give them security clearance. It died for good when they let Trump and Barr spin the Mueller report and then refused to hold him accountable for the obvious obstruction of Justice which has just led to him doing the same thing he did soliciting Russia’s help all over again now with ukraine

  14. Vinnie Gambone says:

    Only march that matters is the march to the polling places. Please , please. please dear God, release the tax returns.

    • Rayne says:

      Wow, that’s fun, PJ, thanks for sharing that. The improvements in resolution they share are interesting; wonder what they didn’t share for security reasons? One bit that was really heartbreaking: the lights visible at night from fracking sites across Texas.

  15. ernesto1581 says:

    Can someone explain or speculate about why Schiff & co. assured Judge Leon yesterday they would not lean on Kupperman for testimony in Senate proceedings? the subpoena was already withdrawn, Kupperman’s case is moot (I would think), although it still seems to be drifting around like the flying Dutchman. Is this another case of Democrats’ exquisite bidding skills on display — Yes, we have a really good hand but we promise not to play all the trumps, so to speak.

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