May 8, 2008

The Tattlesnake – The End of the Clinton Era Edition

Election II – Tracy For President” is Finally On Its Last Reel

“This is Hillary Rodham, calling from Emerson Junior High School in Park Ridge. I want you to tell Mayor Daley that it was wrong of him to steal the election, and that Richard Nixon should have won!”
– Hillary Clinton calling Chicago City Hall on Nov. 9, 1960, when she was a Teenage Republican, as quoted by In These Times.

“A high station in life is earned by the gallantry with which appalling experiences are survived with grace.”
– Tennessee Williams

Although Your Tattlesnake’s been on hiatus recently, recharging batteries and working on other projects, he hasn’t neglected politics, and the post-May 6th unraveling of Hillary Clinton’s campaign. Let’s start off with everyone’s favorite, an anecdote:

The Tattler knows of two women who fit into Hillary’s core demographic, the people she’d need to get elected president: white middle-class women in their 50s. One is a psychologist and the other a small business owner. Both initially strongly supported Sen. Clinton until two months ago when she descended into this Rovian nightmare of innuendo, sleaze and negative campaigning. They are disgusted with her these days — the psychologist said she would have to ‘force herself’ to vote for her in November, but she’d rather have Obama. The small business owner said there is no way she could live with her conscience if she voted for Hillary since she’s seen this ‘obsessive, manic, anything for a vote’ side of her. If Obama doesn’t get the nomination, she may vote third party or sit this one out. They are particularly incensed that she is campaigning on her ‘testicular fortitude’ — they wanted, after all, a Democratic woman as president, not a fake Republican man.

Of course, this is just anecdotal, but I wonder how many other women in their age group are having the same reaction?

“Against the assault of laughter nothing can stand.”
– Mark Twain

Meanwhile, Your Tattlesnipe has also been hanging with his Homies at the local bars. Having once worked the kind of physically exhausting jobs that required a medicinal dose of whiskey by the shot and several bottles of beer at the end of the day just to lower the pain and stay sane, I well know what type of liquor is served in Working Class Palaces, the constituency Hill was trying to impress by sipping a shot of Crown Royal and tipping a beer at a saloon in Indiana. The real Blue-Collar Heroes were highly amused at Mrs. Clinton’s photo-op – first off, none of these guys would drink a pricey blend like Crown Royal. The actual Members of the Working Non-Elite throw down Jim Beam, Ten High, Jack Daniel’s or whatever cheap rotgut whiskey the dive has on hand. They also don’t sip, they pour it down in one quick snort – another blunder by the Regular Salt-of-the-Earth Midwestern Gal from suburban Park Ridge whose net worth just happens to be over $100 million dollars.


April 19, 2008

Frank Herbert: The Democrats’ Road Map to Defeat

Frank Herbert, The New York Times, April 19, 2008

The Democrats are doing everything they can to blow this presidential election. This is a skill that comes naturally to the party. There is no such thing as a can’t-miss year for the Democrats. They are truly gifted at finding ways to lose.

Jimmy Carter managed to win the White House in 1976 by looking pious and riding a wave of anti-Watergate revulsion. After four hapless years, he dutifully handed the keys back to the G.O.P.

Bill Clinton tried hard to lose, with sex scandals and whatnot, during the 1992 campaign. But Ross Perot wouldn’t let him. Mr. Clinton won with a piddling 43 percent of the vote. For eight years, Mr. Clinton tried to throw the presidency away (with sex scandals and whatnot), but he was never able to succeed.

That’s been it for the party for the past 40 years. The Democrats have become so psychologically battered by these many decades in the leadership wilderness that they consider the Clinton years, during which the president was impeached and they lost control of both houses of Congress, to have been a period of triumph.

Now comes 2008, a can’t-lose year if there ever was one. A united Democratic Party should be able to win this election in a walk. The economy is terrible and getting worse. The Republicans are demoralized. John McCain is no J.F.K. And the country wants to elect a Democrat.

Read More Here

April 15, 2008

The Tattlesnake – The Media Elite Highlight Their Own Elitism Edition

The bored and restless Punditrocracy, maintaining their staunch avoidance of relevance or importance, furiously lit like garbage scow flies upon Barack Obama’s alleged ‘elitism’ for pointing out that people in small towns are bitter and angry at being ignored by politicians once they’ve been elected. He added, if one bothered to listen to more than the out-of-context soundbite of his San Francisco comments, that they tend to vote for things such as guns and God and against immigrants because these are issues which the GOP has carefully constructed as distracting vents for their boiling frustrations. Contrary to the Pundicrats gasping shock at such a blunder as telling the truth – they hate that – Obama didn’t seem to rile voters much with his ‘bitter’ talk – many even agreed wholeheartedly.

Of course the Hill People, sensing the nearness of electoral oblivion, had to get what political mileage they could out of Obama’s ‘gaffe,’ but Hillary herself might have left out the prosaic and artificial-sounding anecdote of her father taking her out as a small child and teaching her how to shoot a firearm. Growing up in the same ’50′s America as Hillary, it just doesn’t seem credible to me that Dad Rodham would have grabbed his young daughter and stuck a 30-06 rifle in her tiny hands – more likely he would have told her to go join Mom in the kitchen for pointers on creating the perfect Kraft cheese casserole while he took his sons out hunting. Ah, well, truth is the first casualty of war and political campaigns.

But the stern media consternation over Obama’s remarks, and their desperate flailing in trying to dub him as another hapless, out-of-touch Kerry ‘elitist,’ reached a pinnacle of absurd hilarity yesterday on MSNBC when Norah O’Donnell, as attractive as she is vapid, chuckled and smirked over Obama referring to the high price of arugula when he was campaigning in Iowa earlier this year. “Why,” hooted O’Donnell, “they don’t even have arugula there!” Although she and her pundit guests didn’t catch it, Norah was displaying her own aloof elitism, as if it were a scarlet ‘E’ emblazoned on her forehead. Our six-and-seven figure Nationally Televised Media don’t get out much among the rabble; if they did, they’d realize the rubes in Iowa, as Media Matters has noted, not only know what arugula is, but grow it and eat it, and even occasionally wash it down with cappuccinos and lattes. (Yes, they actually have Starbucks and other gourmet coffee outlets out in the Hawkeye State, as well as many other parts of Fly-Over Country.) Why, even my local little coffee shop, which used to feature only one humble grind poured by a pleasant middle-aged waitress from a glass Cory carafe, now has some foreign-sounding caffeinated drinks on the menu.


April 1, 2008

‘Obama Mamas’ Deployed in PA to Help Candidate in Primary

Filed under: Commentary,Opinion — Tags: , , , , — RS Janes @ 4:35 pm

‘Obama Mamas’ Deployed in PA to Help Candidate in Primary

By J. J. Gingleheimer-Schmitt
The Wilkes-Barre Citizen-Review
Updated 45 minutes ago at 2:58 pm EST

Exclusive to the Citizen-Review — According to Steve Puta, Barack Obama’s Pennsylvania Campaign Co-Chair, thousands of women between the ages of 19 and 45 have been sent out across the Keystone State with the mission of convincing male voters to cast their ballots for the Illinois senator April 22.

“It’s really important that we bring in working-class male voters in the 21 to 50 demographic,” Puta said in an interview. “To that end, we’ve been enlisting attractive women to join what we call the Obama Mamas to entice those men into the polling place, in a manner of speaking.”

Puta went on to say that the group was concentrating on sports bars, truck stops, diners, rest stops, hardware stores, unemployment offices and other places where men gather. “We’re in a long hard fight here, but our numbers have been quickly growing since we announced the program last week,” Puta said, “and it’s really awesome that we have these young hotties and MILFs out there, in mini-skirts and high heels, committed to making this a super-sized victory for Barack.”

Maudie Frickert, Director of Hillary Clinton’s Wilkes-Barre County campaign, dismissed the Obama Mamas, “This is a really disgusting sexist stunt. I think he’ll lose a lot of support among women with this. It should be called Bimbos for Barack.”

Obama’s national campaign refused to comment on the Obama Mamas.


March 27, 2008

The Tattlesnake – Throw Them All Under the Bus Edition

Filed under: Commentary,Opinion — Tags: , , , , — RS Janes @ 4:27 pm

This, That and Other Scat

– “Throw under the bus”: Isn’t it time to throw this exhausted Mediocracy line under the bus and back over it a few times for good measure?

– The country’s deeply in the debt and borrowing money to keep afloat, our economy’s ‘under the bus,’ and our military is near the breaking point, yet I didn’t hear McCain asked even one question regarding how he intends to pay for his endless war in Iraq, nor how he plans to find fresh bodies to sacrifice to his vague idea of victory over there.

– Will Tonya Harding object to her tactics of ‘knee-capping’ Nancy Kerrigan being compared to Hillary Clinton’s going negative against Obama? I can hear Tonya now, “I’m voting for that McCainey guy – I don’t truck with them pinko liberal commies like Clinton.” (Side note: Will Hillary be appearing on “Celebrity Boxing” in a few years?)

– Speaking of Hillary, what could she be thinking by proposing to alleviate the housing crisis by dragging in Robert Rubin and Alan Greenspan to fix it? Rubin is the ultimate Wall Street insider and rinky-dink deals by his Big Money cronies caused the crisis in the first place while Greenspan’s fetid policies as Fed chief set the stage for the economic disaster we’re wallowing in now. Would a President Hillary invite McCain and Cheney in to help her during a Middle East crisis?


March 16, 2008

The Tattlesnake — Obama’s Wright Wing and McCain Trained Monkeys Edition

Filed under: Commentary,Opinion — Tags: , , , , — RS Janes @ 6:46 am

“But as I travel around this big ol’ world,
There’s one thing that I most fear:
It’s a white man in a golf shirt
With a cell phone in his ear.”

– From “Who’s Gonna Build Your Wall?” a Tom Russell song.

Obama’s Wright Brother Flap: In responding to the media furor over Jeremiah Wright’s remarks on rich, white people and the reasons why this nation was attacked on 9/11, Obama should have said that, while he disagrees with his pastor and old friend on some things, he supports his right to free speech, and to openly express his opinions, just as he would support the right of any American or theologian to speak out freely, even those with whom he profoundly disagrees. Rather than go on the defensive, Obama should have made this a free speech issue, which it is, instead of the ‘judgment’ issue the Punditrocracy is trying to frame it as. And, incidentally, someone tell Chris Matthews to quit mischaracterizing Wright’s comments as ‘blaming the victims of 9/11′ – Wright did no such thing. Note to the Big Media: Stop playing Wright’s “God damn America” line out of context. A lot of Americans might agree with Wright if they heard the 120 seconds preceding the ‘offensive’ three words, but, of course, you knew that, didn’t you, you little McCain Trained Monkeys.

Quotable: “Let me be clear on this: This is only a problem for Barack Obama in that there are still a lot of pinheads around that don’t understand that dissent is the highest form of patriotism. And he’ll distance himself from it because he has to and because Wright’s style isn’t his. It’s not how Obama rolls. But there’s nothing untrue about Wright’s statements in and of themselves.”
– From “Truth Time: Wright Is Right,” by DF, TPM Cafe, March 15, 2008.

And, BTW, when does the BM go after McCain for accepting endorsements from such certifiable fruitcakes as John Hagee, Rod Parsley (wasn’t he once a porn star?) and the late Jerry Falwell?

“All I can tell you is that I am very proud to have Pastor John Hagee’s support.”– John McCain on Feb. 27, 2008.

Here’s what McCain is “very proud” of: Hagee babbles nonsense like, “I believe that New Orleans had a level of sin that was offensive to God, and they are — were recipients of the judgment of God for that. The newspaper carried the story in our local area that was not carried nationally that there was to be a homosexual parade there on the Monday that the Katrina came. And the promise of that parade was that it was going to reach a level of sexuality never demonstrated before in any of the other Gay Pride parades. … I believe that the Hurricane Katrina was, in fact, the judgment of God against the city of New Orleans.” (So why did Katrina devastate areas of heterosexual Republican Mississippi as well? God has poor aim?) He has also condemned the Catholic religion as “The Great Whore” and the “anti-Christ,” thinks Harry Potter books are propaganda for Satan, and held a ‘slave sale’ in 1996 to raise job funds for high school seniors. In his Cornerstone Church’s newsletter, Hagee publicized the event with, “Slavery in America is returning to Cornerstone!” and “Make plans to come and go home with a slave.” If this idiot worked a real job, his employers would have fired him by now.

God’s Rod Parsley has hallucinated that our Constitution somewhere says our national mission is to destroy Islam, and Falwell was so far over the edge that he, like Hagee, thought we were attacked on 9/11 as a judgment from God for allowing gays and women basic civil rights, among other head-slapping nutballery from the creepy far-right fringe of his reptilian brain.

– Speaking of McCain (from Jamison Foser at Media Matters):


March 13, 2008

The Tattlesnake – The Media Monsters in a Box for John McCain Edition

Filed under: Commentary,Opinion — Tags: , , , — RS Janes @ 4:37 pm

“A propaganda model focuses on this inequality of wealth and power and its multilevel effects on mass-media interests and choices. It traces the routes by which money and power are able to filter out the news fit to print, marginalize dissent, and allow the government and dominant private interests to get their messages across to the public. The essential ingredients of our propaganda model, or set of news ‘filters,’ fall under the following headings: (1) the size, concentrated ownership, owner wealth, and profit orientation of the dominant mass-media firms; (2) advertising as the primary income source of the mass media; (3) the reliance of the media on information provided by government, business, and ‘experts’ funded and approved by these primary sources and agents of power; (4) ‘flak’ as a means of disciplining the media; and (5) ‘anticommunism’ [or 'anti-terrorism'] as a national religion and control mechanism. These elements interact with and reinforce one another. The raw material of news must pass through successive filters, leaving only the cleansed residue fit to print. They fix the premises of discourse and interpretation, and the definition of what is newsworthy in the first place, and they explain the basis and operations of what amount to propaganda campaigns.”
– Noam Chomsky and Edward S. Herman, “Manufacturing Consent,” Pantheon Books, 1988.

A barely awake Tattlesnake caught Time’s Ana Marie Cox on Col. Howie Kurtz’s “Reliable Sources” (CNN) on March 9, gassing about the importance of access to politicians and maintaining a career rather than informing the public as the US journalists’ main job. Then there was the now-fired Tucker Carlson grilling Scottish journalist Gerry Peev who printed Obama aide Samantha Powers’ remark that Hillary was ‘monster’ even though Powers asked, right after she said it, that it be off the record. Carlson, as noted in this excellent article by Glenn Greenwald at,”Tucker Carlson Unintentionally Reveals The Role of The American Press,” seemed to also believe that the role of an American journalist is to protect their lines of access to the movers and shakers at the expense of letting the public know what they are really like, not that Tucker would qualify as a real journalist in anyone’s mind but his own.

This all smacks of so much EST-driven, psychobabble-laden, Outward Boundish, Bonfire-of-the-Vanities-Masters-of-the-Universe “I’m an asshole and proud of it!” yuppie doodah that it makes your Tattler slightly ill. Who but a yuppie idiot would think their ‘career in journalism’ was more important than the public’s right to know – I mean aside from their yuppie publishers, program directors, editors, and other executive suite backwash?

And now we have the media boys (and girls) on the bus unabashedly playing footsie with John McCain because – gasp! – he talks to them like normal human beings! In return, the media darlings have been covering up, diminishing, or glossing over McCain’s temper tantrums, flip-flops, and blatant lies. Notice that no one called him to task for wholeheartedly accepting the recent endorsement of a Rapture-Ready neocon Christian goofball like John Hagee, while Barack Obama receiving the unwanted nod from religious nutcase Louis Farrakhan was chewed over endlessly.

So, it’s no secret that the US Big Media has a kissy-face love affair with the current Republican candidate for president — they all seem to be fighting to see how far to the bottom of the tank they can sink for their straight-talking war hero, as this wincing exchange between NBC’s Chris Matthews and Brian Williams when President Junior endorsed McCain last week elucidates (h/t to Media Matters). Warning: Swallow your coffee before you read this next part:


March 2, 2008

Bob Herbert: A Democratic Nominee? Or a Debacle?

Filed under: Commentary — Tags: , , , , — Volt @ 3:21 am


Bob Herbert, The New York Times, March 1, 2008

When does a dandy fight become an ugly brawl?

For the Democrats, perhaps on Tuesday.

If Barack Obama wins in either Texas or Ohio, the race for the nomination will effectively be over. At that point the Clintons, if they have any regard for the fortunes of the party, will be duty-bound to graciously fold their tents and try to rally their supporters behind a candidate who will be stepping into a firestorm of hostility from the other side.

If Hillary Clinton wins both Texas and Ohio, the Democrats will need a trainload of aspirin and a shrink.

The superdelegates currently sprinting toward Obama would suddenly look over their shoulders and wonder what happened to his O-mentum. The Clintons would declare themselves (yet again) the Comeback Kids, although they would still be behind in delegates. They would continue their push to have the Michigan and Florida delegations seated. They would step up their attacks on the Obama forces with understandable glee. And they would use whatever persuasive powers they could muster to push the idea with party regulars that Senator Obama is unelectable.

Read More Here

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