So, About New Hampshire

Biggest thing for me about it is that 42,000 fewer people participated in the Democrat primary than in 2008; the returns aren’t 100% yet, but my calculation is that about 245,000 people voted in the Democrat primary last night, in 2008 it was 287,000. That is a 15% decline – rather large. What is shows that the Democrats are not enthused about 2016 – and the Democrats need at least most of 2008’s enthusiasm to carry their nominee – still almost certain to be Hillary – over the finish line. Meanwhile, over on the GOP side, a bit more than 280,000 people participated, while in 2012 it was 248,000 – showing GOP enthusiasm is up. If this sort of turnout prevails over the primaries (and I suspect it will), then it will demonstrate that the Democrats are in deep trouble.

From what I’ve seen, Sanders didn’t just beat Hillary, he crushed her. But, will it matter? Next up is South Carolina where the Democrat electorate is heavily African-American and African-Americans have been Clinton loyalists since 1992 – with the exception of 2008. But was 2008 merely a reflection of running against Obama, or an indication that African-American loyalty to the Clinton’s isn’t as deep as people think? We’ll find out in South Carolina – if Sanders can peel away even 35% of the African-American primary vote from Hillary, then we might not have Hillary as the Democrat nominee. And that, actually, worries me a bit. I know that the official line is that Hillary is impervious but I’m starting to suspect she’s a loser – against any GOPer. Sanders, the Socialist, is allegedly the George McGovern of 2016…but with his populist, anti-Establishment credibility, he might actually be harder to beat, especially if the GOP nominates someone like Jeb or Kasich.

On the GOP side, the only remarkable thing for me was Cruz coming in strong third – he spent little time or resources in New Hampshire and did very well. Meanwhile, Jeb poured in resources and came in fourth. It is time for Jeb to pack it in – though I suspect he’ll hang around until Florida. Rubio had a bad night – fifth place behind Jeb, of all things. Some say it was the debate and maybe that did it; I don’t really know. Maybe 2016 just isn’t Rubio’s year. Right now, I think it shapes up as a battle between Cruz and Trump, with a slight chance that Rubio rebounds as the Great Establishment Hope.

Get ready for a strange political year…

I’m Writing Another Long Post Open Thread

I really did like writing that last long post – and, so inspired, am in the process of writing another. It’ll likely become a series as I explore my views of just what, exactly, makes one a Conservative or a Progressive. But as enormously long posts take a long time to write, how about some content?

Well, the Broncos won – and all Chargers fans are delighted as it means the near-certain retirement of Manning and thus the Bolts will have a shot at the AFC West next year. As for Newton’s meltdown in the post-game presser: I cut him some slack. He’s a young, vigorous man who just had a fantastic year but the Big Prize – the thing he’s worked his whole, young life for – was ripped away from him…by that absolutely stunning Denver defense (I hadn’t seen a Denver game all year – I had no idea just how good those guys are). Newton will be back – and I think he’ll eventually get his well-deserved ring…and he’ll mature and do better.

Sanders and Hillary are tied in national polls – mostly a meaningless thing as the Primaries are a series of electoral contests which don’t 1 for 1 relate to each other…but it is a stunning fall from the heights for Hillary, who is now nakedly demanding Progressives support her simply because she’s a woman. I still think she’ll steamroll her way to the nomination, but she’s heavily damaged goods. This is what makes the GOP primary so important – whomever we nominate is likely the next President, even if it’s Jeb (that is a change for me – I thought him the one sure-loser for 2016, but Hillary is so bad that even Jeb could possibly beat her). Related: final poll for NH shows Bush in 2nd, Rubio in 4th. If it works out that way, then we’ll have Jeb to kick around for a while longer. I hope it’s not true – I hope by SC (or, at least, by the “SEC Primary” we’re down to a three man cage match between Trump, Cruz and Rubio). Also related: pretty, young woman is feeling the Bern…which is still rather sad, but I have about 1,567,978% more respect for any Prog backing Bernie than I do those backing Hillary. Seriously – Bernie is lots and lots of things I disagree with, but he isn’t a nauseating tub of corruption.

How do you fall on the “Obama is doing this deliberately/Obama is just an incompetent dolt” debate? My view: he’s an incompetent dolt who is managing to deliberately wreck things because for more than 7 years, no one has really dared to try and stop him.

NARAL/Moloch = Same/Same.

A financial expert opines that there is zero chance of a recession this year. I’m sure you’re comforted.

Keep Libya in mind – Obama’s failed war there might be heading towards Failed War II.

Draft women into the military? I’m a bit old fashioned – heck no. But here’s the thing – if we believe that women should serve in combat then there are two requirements:

1. Women must meet the exact same standards as the men and there can be no lowering of standards and

2. You’d have to register women for the draft.

Call me whatever you want – but I think that it is the duty of men to fight; to spare women, as far as possible, from the horrors of war. Liberals don’t particularly care about that – ramming through their idea of equality is far more important, even if “equal” means “lower the standards until the women can meet them”. They also aren’t at all concerned about combat efficiency because war is wrong and, at any rate, Soft Power will make war un-necessary. Meanwhile, careerists in the Armed Forces are willing to do anything to get another star on their shoulder and if that means lowering combat efficiency in order to suck up to the politicians, they’ll do it.

If all that is happening is getting you down:

A Ballade of Suicide

The gallows in my garden, people say,
Is new and neat and adequately tall;
I tie the noose on in a knowing way
As one that knots his necktie for a ball;
But just as all the neighbours–on the wall–
Are drawing a long breath to shout “Hurray!”
The strangest whim has seized me. . . . After all
I think I will not hang myself to-day.

To-morrow is the time I get my pay–
My uncle’s sword is hanging in the hall–
I see a little cloud all pink and grey–
Perhaps the rector’s mother will not call– I fancy that I heard from Mr. Gall
That mushrooms could be cooked another way–
I never read the works of Juvenal–
I think I will not hang myself to-day.

The world will have another washing-day;
The decadents decay; the pedants pall;
And H.G. Wells has found that children play,
And Bernard Shaw discovered that they squall,
Rationalists are growing rational–
And through thick woods one finds a stream astray
So secret that the very sky seems small–
I think I will not hang myself to-day.

Not a Massively Long Post Open Thread

Figured my last post was way too long, so let’s put up something more immediately topical.

Cosmopolitan puts a sad face on the fact that more Texas women are having babies…I’m telling you, abortion is a sacrament in the Church of Progressivism.

Jimmy Carter opines that Trump is far more malleable than Cruz – and he would know about being a malleable President!

Do you like your recently reduced gasoline prices? Obama doesn’t.

Rob long points out that organizing and voting is what wins elections – it was, after all, Team Obama’s massively efficient organization which got him the votes in 2012. My note on this: of all the candidates, Cruz and Hillary have, by far, the best nuts-and-bolts political organizations. All else being equal, this indicates they will be the nominees and one of them will out-organize the other and win. Preparation wins battles.

I watched The Right Stuff the other day – delightful movie but what struck me most about it was that it was really a story about men being men; wanting to be tough and brave and do the grand deed simply because it needs to be done and brave men have to step up and do it. We’ve lost that.

Hillary doesn’t want to release the transcripts of the speeches she gave before various fat cat corporations and organizations. Is it because she reveals secrets – or because they are such clear boilerplate garbage that no one could possibly justify paying $250,000 to hear it, and thus it is clearly just a bribe for future access?

Just What is Left and Right Politics, Anyway?

Tuesday on Twitter the trend #SocialismChecklist was trending. Naturally, I joined in the fun – my best contribution to the effort (13 retweets, 10 likes) was “1. 100 million political murders in 20th century. 2. Don’t learn history. 3. Lather, Rinse, Repeat. #SocialismChecklist”. But it was my 2nd most popular entry which got the most actual comments back:

1. Nazis aren’t socialist. 2. Why are they National Socialists, then? 3. Shut up! #SocialismChecklist

A bunch of our Progressive friends didn’t like that bit, at all – Nazis, of course, are of the right in the Progressive view. Nazi are just extreme rightists – and even a few on the conservative side of the aisle went along with this. I disagree most emphatically with that idea. There is, indeed, a left/right divide in politics but for one to really understand the divide, history has to be consulted.

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Wow Iowa Caucus!

Didn’t expect this – I was resigned to Trump doing well, perhaps winning, and Hillary pushing back the Sanders challenge. As of right now, Cruz has definitely won it on the GOP side while Rubio surged to a very close-behind-Trump third place. Over on the Democrat side, it is razor-close…last I checked, only 0.2% separated Hillary and Sanders.

GOP turnout beat the previous GOP Iowa caucus record by about 50% – and we probably do have to tip our hat a bit to Trump on that, but it is clear that the other candidates had a hand in it, as well. Haven’t been able to find raw numbers on Democrat voters – which makes me suspect the numbers were unspectacular. If that is the case, then what we’ve got is a worn-out Democrat base which is bucking against a coronation of Her Majesty.

Everyone is still playing the “only my guy can win” game – ie, my candidate is the only one who can beat Hillary. Well, first off, the GOP might not square off against Hillary, to begin with, but even if we do, I’m more and more feeling that Hillary can’t win. Sure, she’s not as monstrously unpopular (by approval rating) as Donald Trump, but she’s darned sure more unpopular than any of other GOPer in the race…and her popularity is highly unlikely to improve between now and November. True enough, she and her operatives are nasty people and will use every dirty trick in the book against whomever the GOP nominates, but I don’t think that will work…not least because the American people may be growing tired of Democrat nastiness in the service of raw power.

At any rate, I’m highly encouraged by tonight. We’ll see how it goes to November…

Out and About on a Saturday

So, the Black Lives Matter thing? If you had guessed it was ginned up by commie activists, you guessed right. It does, after all, have the primary mark of a leftwing program – it is based upon lies.

John Stoehr over at The Week notes that Hillary will continue Obama’s policies and this is proof that Hillary is the change we need. I wonder: do our progs even remotely realize how silly their double-speak sounds?

Pretty sure that Team Hillary’s prediction of a what will result from a Sanders win in Iowa is “a plague of locusts o’er the land” – Nate Silver, however, breaks it down pretty well. Bottom line: Iowa and New Hampshire are Sanders country…filled with white, upper class liberals. Elsewhere in the country, not so much. On the other hand, a Sanders win in both places might tilt enough voters in SC his way to make even a Hillary win look weak…and then just about everything is up for grabs in the Democrat primary.

Apparently, Bill Clinton wasn’t looking a picture of health at a rally – and there are plenty of questions about Hillary’s overall health. Sanders, at 74, does appear at times more vigorous than both of them (maybe being a granola-eating hippy does have benefits?). Not to be disrespectful, here, but in the Clinton’s we are proposing to elect a Geezer-American as President. This can be done – most famously by Reagan…but Reagan looked and acted like the picture of good health. Question: if Hillary gets elected and is incapacitated while in office, would the Administration tell us?

Trump is to travel to Arkansas next week – Allahpundit notes the oddity. The obvious conclusion – Huckabee is going to endorse Trump. Allahpundit notes some strong reasons for doing this (animosity towards Cruz; possibility of some position with Trump…maybe even a VP pick). It would be yet another major Evangelical voice coming out for Trump who is, well, let’s just say he’s a bit theologically vague and has a checkered past. I admit I don’t understand the willingness of Evangelicals to back Trump – especially against rock-solid Evangelicals like Cruz (and Huckabee). Maybe this is just because I’m Catholic and can’t see it all from the inside…I fully understand the forgive thing (it is only anti-Christians who believe that Christians are cruel and unforgiving), but I wouldn’t expect someone like Trump – who has not, apparently, repented of those past actions which rather flew in the face of Christian morality – to get this sort of Evangelical support. But, there it is…

The Administration is changing the rules on labeling Israeli-made products. Seems that if you make your product on land the Administration considers Palestine, you can’t call it “Made in Israel”. This is to punish Israel over the Settlements issue. But if they aren’t labeled “Made in Israel”, then what will they be labeled? That is unclear. But what is clear is that, once again, the Obama Administration is signalling anti-Israel views.