Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Well, that happened.

This is a political post. 

I'm stunned. Still. In one swoop of apathy and lack of scope, this happened. Well, damn.
First, if you are a pundit, please turn in your press credentials, your notepad and your crystal ball. We thank you for your time and your service but you know nothing. Nothing. Nada. Zilch.

Because up until last night the conventional wisdom was an openly racist billionaire with multiple bankruptcies and a pending rape case who openly called for violence against his opponents and employed no ground team and no ad buys couldn't win a national election. But this election has proved that conventional wisdom is utter rubbish. Apparently the world is always in flux and all that any of us were ever doing is guessing. 

Eight months ago the big story was the disarray the Republican Party was in, and how it was soon going to be impossible for them to win nationally. In reality, the story should have been the Democratic party and it's less than democratic anointing of a chosen candidate. So pundits, we're done with you. It was a nice run, but we have no more need for this type of "filter bubble" reporting. Here's a lovely gold Casio watch and coupon for extra sprinkles at Dunkin Dounts. 

Because I was actively not paying attention it was only within the past few days, after reading an article I can't find right now, that I realized what central theory Clinton's campaign was organized around. Looking at my own scribblings from just 24 hours ago I can see that I apparently bought into it as well:  "You need surgery. Who do you trust more: A doctor with a malpractice suit against them, or the Manager of your favorite fast food place?" And what strikes me as odd is that it type thinking appears to based on an discredited theory of Ayn Rand, just a tweak away from one formerly embraced by the Republican party elites. This alone should have made it suspect. 

Clinton's campaign, the thrust of it and the memes of it, were based in the idea of meritocracy, the idea that the one who is most meritorious, most educated, best equipped should be the one to lead.  It sounds great on paper, but it's essentially Rand's Rational Choice Theory but with a trail of bona fides as a supplemental. And Rand's theory was hokum because it discounted that emotional tendencies continually bleed through most of our decisions.  

In essence, Clinton felt because she had a fantastic resume, if her interview was just so-so it didn't matter: She was the most qualified candidate. Not the best, the most qualified.  By contrast her opponent had a terrible resume, but his interview was so good the interviewer took him out for a beer afterwards. There is more to leadership and getting elected than merit. Clinton had an inability to invoke deep seated feelings outside the cabal of Democratic elite, who essentially anointed her in 2008 and hung onto that choice into the now. Clinton just didn't excite people, she brought no energy, and much like in 2008 just assumed she was going to win. She presented as the inevitable. It turned out we weren't with her because we wanted to be, but because we had to be. And it showed at the polls. 

*Deep, sad sigh*

With all that said, let's do a quick rundown of where we'll stand in say, a year from now - 

√ The Affordable Healthcare Act will be overturned and replaced by...nothing? Or maybe block grants to the states which in turn won't squander the money because there is like no corruption at the state level. 

√ Corporate taxes are going to be cut to boost job creation and the economy, despite the theory failing to work in Wisconsin and Kentucky. 

√ The military budget is about get a boost. 

√ These will cause the deficit to explode because we'll be taking in less and spending lots more, but because suddenly deficits won't matter anymore, because the Republicans are in charge.

√ The Department of Justice will cease to investigate officer related shootings or even be interested in pursuing them. The SEC, already weak, is about to become completely toothless.

√ The Supreme Court will on it's way to being right-wing conservative to an extreme for the next 30 years or so. Such a lock they might even try to repeal Roe v. Wade.

√ More militarization of the local police. 

√ The Voting Rights act will be completely dismantled if not completely repealed, and emboldened by the success of their previous efforts the prospect of voter registration purges under the guise of protecting the integrity of the vote will become more commonplace. 

√ The Dream Act will be eviscerated 

√ Any type of Affirmative Action may be removed from all aspects of life. Damn a diversity hire.

√ The Post Office may close. All of them. Seriously. 

√ Regulations that protect us from ourselves are about to go the way of the dodo. Because it's not about us its about profit. Profit now rules. 

And finally, and most depressing, the Republican Party is about to go to work overtime to reduce Obama's legacy to that of a political footnote at best, and his memory to that of painting in a museum. The plaque might even just read "This black guy was in charge for a while. Nothing happened." It will be as if the last eight years were but a dream.

But hey, there is work in Arizona! We got a wall to build. 

Damn, damn, damn. 

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Is it over? Tomorrow? See ya tomorrow then...

This is a political post. 

I'm not sure what will happen by tomorrow. If the Second Civil war has started, meet me at the spot we talked about that time, and bring some bait. If not, I think the only thing I'll be happy with that the damn ads are over. I was just so damn tired.

If you were hoping for scintillating commentary this time around, I'm sorry. I'm working on a certification,  the "ranch" where I'm working never seems to run out of cattle, and I like to do this little thing called sleep every now and then. And occasionally, from time to time, I even leave the house. But I digress.

This political circus for me was best summed up in one...tweet? Instagram? I don't remember, but it went something like this:

You need surgery. Who do you trust more: A doctor with a malpractice suit against them, or the Manager of your favorite fast food place?

Hillary isn't perfect, but who is? They've been after her for years and haven't been able to catch her, so if nothing else it speaks to her intelligence and craftiness. But her opponent is so unsophisticated and unprepared, that very thing he swears he's an expert at and will get going again, the economy and Wall Street, lurches in fear at the idea of him as the Commander-in-Chief. I know a lot of people think he's the answer, or at least a brick through the window of the people who got us here, but Trump isn't who they envision him to be. He's who he says he is. And who he says he is is a person not really ready to President.

That's all I got this political season. Now I got stuff to do.

Hope the world is still here next week.  

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Cubs Win!

Ramblings Post #326
I follow sports. I follow basketball, football, baseball, soccer, tennis, rugby, curling, cycling, NASCAR, surfing, gymnastics, track, bowling, and whatever else ESPN puts on when I'm not paying attention. I can find something about it I like and will watch fascinated. Except hockey. Blue line, five hole, dude, I just get so confused.

I watched WGN as a kid, so I know the Cubs story. But sadly when I was in Chicago I did not visit Wrigley Field. It was the end of the fall heading into winter when I got there, and by the time the season was starting back up again I was already headed back for warmer climes. (Note: Do not move north in the winter, you will get the wrong impression).

I watched parts of the series. Okay, watching a lot of baseball is dull. Playing cool, watching is a study in patience. But finally, the Cubs, after 108 years win it all. But the real reason I'm happy the Cubs won? It made this man happy.

Bill Murray. National Treasure.

Barkeep, One for me, and one for my old pal Mr. Murray.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Art from the Black Hand Side

Ramblings Post #325
Sometimes there are things I like because, well I like them. I don't know why I just do. Like maps. And floor plans. When I was younger I wanted to be an architect because it involved floor plans. Until I realized you didn't just get to look at them, you had to make them. Um, right. You see I'm not an architect now, right?   

By Marcus Williams aka Marcus the Visual
When I was looking to buy that other house, and happier times had plans for the bar/club setup in the basement, hot tub on the back deck and out door setup for neighborhood move screenings (AKA the long, long ago), part of the whole thing was an art gallery. Prints from local Atlanta artists hanging on the wall kinda stuff. And prints I would buy online. And maps blown up for detail. And floor plans. And...I'm getting off track here.

Art can tell stories.I judge a comic or graphic novel on how good or intriguing the art is. Bad art can destroy the illusion. But those people I like? Damn. And I like this guy. 

By Marcus Williams aka Marcus the Visual
These are for an online drawing challenge where the artist is supposed to flip the gender of the character. I looked at a few them and I think he's the best of the group that participated. That I just really like his drawing style.

By Marcus Williams aka Marcus the Visual
Either that or I just appreciated that the characters he chose were black. But hey, we like what we like. Should I ever finish one of these damn stories I'm writing, and it comes down to it, I might even have to look into a commission. This is good stuff. So good I had to drop back by.

By Marcus Williams aka Marcus the Visual
Barkeep. Let me have something mellow, with just a twist of spark to it. Or bourbon. You know what, I'll just have the bourbon with soda. Thanks.