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sofa king

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Member since: Wed Apr 14, 2004, 03:27 PM
Number of posts: 10,857

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The classic middle name.

Since the 1990s, Chuck Shepherd has been observing the strange phenomenon of the middle name "Wayne" and its relationship to crime. He keeps a list of murderers with that middle name.


I would further observe that the old Confederacy, particularly Texas, is disproportionately represented in Shepherd's list.

Surely it is some variant of confirmation bias at work, though Shepherd makes a powerful observation when he says, "I suspect that aggressive-personality fathers during the 1950s and 1960s did in fact hopefully and disproportionately name their boys after that era's icon of ruggedness, John Wayne."

Never rule out weirdness, particularly in America, and particularly in Texas. Therefore another shoe may drop in this case, with the flying Texan pimp winding up with blood on his hands, too.

The Backfire Effect in Practice

The Backfire Effect is one of the most infuriating new developments in politics and one of the major differences between liberal and conservative voters.

Simply put, conservatives are too stupid to evaluate between truth and falsehood. They rely upon the "authority" of the speaker and if a speaker they trust lies, and that lie is refuted by a liberal, they automatically gravitate toward the lie because they are not capable of evaluating the truth and instead default to the (totally untrustworthy) authority they trust.

This is why Republican candidates at the debates have adamantly stood by their lies even when stone-cold busted by facts and figures. By sticking to their guns when refuted with actual facts they are actually making stupid Republicans believe the lie they told.

Journalists help the Backfire Effect along quite a lot by 1) pretending it doesn't exist, and 2) pretending it works equally among all people. It does not. Some of all people default to the first thing they learned, true or not, but only conservatives become more likely to believe the lie when it is refuted.

You can see the Backfire Effect at work in the statistics above. Democratic candidates, playing to their own audience, have no incentive to lie and can suffer greatly for being deceptive (see Gary Hart, John Edwards). Conversely, Republican candidates are rewarded for lying, and you can see it in the stratification of the candidates from most dishonest (Trump) at the top to least dishonest at the bottom (Kasich).

Depending on who wins which nomination, some candidates may have an incentive to adjust their delivery by lying more or less, but at this point neither can do much adjusting. Trump must try his hand at telling the truth but his prior statements will always be used against him. Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton, on the other hand, would benefit from not refuting false statements by Trump, which is its own form of dishonesty.

Thus we are all the victims of the use of fear and dishonesty in political statements. Nobody wins, except the most evil ones who can successfully wiggle like a catfish in the hippo-poop-mud of a drought-stricken African pond. Great.


The GOP is banking on it.

The Republican Party doesn't have a valid path to the White House this year, and they've known it for a year, and they've spent millions having people research the problem. The problem they want to solve is that the Democrats have a two-deep bench of candidates who can defeat any Republican.

(The problem they don't want to solve is that their predatory practices have literally killed off a critical percentage of voters, and now the GOP has a difficult time winning statewide elections, much less a national one like the Presidency.)

Clinton, Sanders, and Biden have all polled higher than the entire Republican clown car, and Romney, and Ryan. Left to its own inertia, the majority of American people intend to destroy the GOP forever, before the decade is out.

So the American people cannot be permitted to decide.

Therefore the only chance they have is to fall back on the gerrymandered House of Representatives, and the only way they can kick the election into the House is by (also, secretly) backing a third-party candidate who can take electoral votes away from the Democratic candidate so that no candidate wins a majority of electoral votes.

At that point, the House simply has to do what they do best, nothing, and by not selecting a President the Speaker of the House inherits the office by default, without a theft-vote that would doom a hundred Republican Congressmen in 2018. This is why the incompetent and alcoholic John Boehner had to be maneuvered out of the Speakership. The next Speaker will be elected in January and it's important that the evil inner circle already has their guy in place before then--and that guy is Paul Ryan.

Republican voters are stupid but Republican leadership is diabolically evil. They have two paths to a contested election:

1) Steal it from Trump and he is guaranteed to run as a third party. Then the GOP can quietly toss money to Trump in the states that they think he can take from the Democratic candidate above the Mason-Dixon line, where only he has a chance of winning against, say, Mrs. Clinton;

2) Let Trump have it and allow the oligarchs to run an establishment conservative as a third-party candidate. Kasich would be a good choice because he has a chance of bagging Ohio and maybe other rust-belt states.

It's a dangerous game that, if not played well, would guarantee a win for the Democrats and might also lose them the Senate. It's a short-term gambit as well, because it's certain to add to the ranks of people who will never again vote Republican, like all of us. The movement in this direction is obvious to me and others, and we should be asking about the bigger picture at this point, because this is a works-once move that is unlikely to be duplicated in the future. So why would they do it?

Looking beyond this election at the next census, the numerous prosecutions for gerrymandering and election irregularity, and the increasing ability of statistics to correctly detect when votes are being flipped, it's clear to me that the inner circle of the GOP isn't just looking for a candidate that can save them now; they are looking for the last Constitutionally-approved American President, who will become America's first President-for-life. Their evil ways have consumed their own electorate, and the powers that be are increasingly looking for some sort of tryant that they can install so that their increasingly less effective election thieving can be replaced by the smoky backroom dealings that have always determined the course of the GOP and the United States.

Don't forget the GOP has at least 2 chances to change the rules...

... Before the convention.

Also don't forget that the chairman of the RNC is Speaker Paul Ryan.

Also don't forget that if the rules are changed and the nomination is stolen from Donald Trump, he's sure to run as a third party candidate.

Also don't forget that if Trump can win a few states as an independent, like say PA, NY, and NJ, it's possible that no candidate will win a majority of electoral votes and the House of Representatives will choose the next President.

Also don't forget that to avoid being voted out for stealing the election, Congress may well choose not to appoint anyone.

In which case Speaker of the House Paul Ryan inherits the job, assuming he is reelected as Speaker in January.

So, what happens to those delegates depends a whole lot on how badly former Vice Presidential candidate Paul Ryan wants to be President....

Jesus Christ, sometimes my imagination frightens me.


Within ten years, self-driving cars are discovered to be a reality when a major automaker, seeking better safety ratings, is busted for cars that secretly assert autonomy over bad drivers and then erase their own AI in the event of a crash.

Double points: the phenomenon will be discovered by the handful of people who actually try to drive SUVs off-road, and discover that the computers reset and malfunction after particularly hard days.

Three possibilities, and a fourth certainty:

1) Rubio is lying in order to project confidence and appear presidential;

2) Rubio is staying in it because he's been privately assured that the nomination will be stolen from Trump at the convention;

3) Rubio knows the story of George Wallace in '72 and he's staying in it just in case Trump catches a bullet.

All three possibilities can be true at once, of course, and all of them are subservient to the overriding and painfully obvious fourth reason, which is now that Presidential candidates can shift campaign cash to themselves without public disclosure, Rubio is paying himself thousands and thousands of dollars every extra day that he stays in it.

That's why all of those dirtballs stayed in it too long--Bush, Christie, Carson, Fiorina. They all stayed in it until donations fell below the administrative level needed to keep banking it at a net profit. So if Rubio gets spanked tonight, he still won't drop out until he's cashed all the checks that are still in the mail--and he surely spammed Florida with donor mail all last week, so right now there are a lot of paychecks still in the mail.

Disgusting, but what else can we expect from Republicans?

Edit: Four hours later, I have proven myself to be full of shit. Can't win 'em all. Said Marco.

I think nominees can be resubmitted, too.

I'm not 100% on that, but I'm pretty sure that when the reset button is pushed in January, 2017, any nominee who was rejected or otherwise not approved can be resubmitted.

It permits the President to play an extremely not-lame duck role in this election. The President can pick an extremely qualified candidate, let the Republicans refuse to hold hearings, mention the refusal at every press conference, and begin to make a couple dozen Senatorial elections turn on the idea that no matter who's running for President, it's also a mandate for President Obama's Supreme Court nominee.

So, to pick a hypothetical example which is totally not going to happen because we are all adults, if one of the Democratic candidates somehow doesn't get the nomination and the other candidate is unpalateable to a particular voter and that voter unwisely decides not to participate in the Presidential election, that voter may still have an interest in unseating his or her Senator, see?

And that puts that hypothetical person in the booth, and unless that hypothetical person is insane, that person will think really damned hard about voting against Donald Trump.... And that person can tell all of DU that he or she was only there to cut the rope on that person's Senator. And nobody will ever know! Hypothetically, that is.

I just know someone is going to take it personally, but I swear I'm not trying to single any one of you out in the hypothetical example above. Oh no, I am singling all of you out, hahahaha!


I will say this and I mean it:

I have to hand it to Jeb!, for I could never have figured out how to piss away fifty million dollars of rich assholes' money... in a primary race... in an off-election year....

It's true that the reality show narcissist and the belief-driven brain surgeon have been saying the stupider things, but it is Jeb! who is doing the stupidest things. Jeb! Bush is trailing and losing ground in the worst Presidential field I've seen in over three decades of observation. That is a self-evident problem that speaks volumes about Jeb!'s competence.

But that's only the beginning because Jeb! is dealing from the bottom of his own stacked deck and STILL losing, and still losing ground. This was supposed to be a walkover for Jeb!, and these are just some of the advantages he brought with him, and promptly squandered:

Jeb! has the most money (Trump isn't dumb enough to spend his own) and has been spending it like his brother running up a no-bid Halliburton contract;

Jeb! had his pick of the best staff from three close-enough-to-steal-it Presidential campaigns, with a pre-existing ground game in every single state;

Jeb! has a brother who gets the most coveted political information in the world: a copy of the Presidential Daily Briefing. The legality and ethics of sharing that information of course plays no role in the matter, since we're talking about members of a crime family. But for whatever reason they're not making use of it--probably because President Obama took out the bullet points and now the Bush boys can't actually understand what the Briefing says. Jeb! should be the best-informed candidate, and maybe he is, but his target demographic is too dumb to know it;

Jeb! is perfectly positioned to run against all of those candidates. He's a former governor, and the GOP loves governors; he's running against FIVE Senators, four of whom are going to lose the election for themselves by their votes coming up in the next two weeks. Three of the other governors he had to run against have already dropped out. He doesn't even need to kiss Carly Fiorina's ass because he's got his own running mate, Pam Bondi, already picked out.

Jeb! has been planning this run for SIX YEARS, if not twice that, and this is his plan. This! The "lose to the racist circus conductor" plan.

My guess is that Jeb!'s problem is that he probably really is marginally smarter than his father and his brother--but he's still a fucking moron because a person can be smarter than W and still have a double-digit IQ. He's smart enough to know that he's smarter than they, but not smart enough to run his campaign by himself or even with minimal input from himself, because of that Bush reverse-Midas touch that we all know so well.

But don't count Jeb! out just yet. There are over 40 million emails from the Bush administration that were supposed to be turned over to the National Archives, a huge amount of them revolving around anthrax and 9/11 and two trillion dollars in missing American money, for which everyone from the former President on down is felony-liable (not for the crimes but for the missing emails, which is a violation of the NARA Act). It's an obvious criminal cover-up and if things don't start breaking Jeb!'s way, everyone involved except Dick Cheney will could down the tubes for it (Cheney is a dual citizen of an Arab nation now, so he could take all those bribes from Halliburton, and he never has to return to the US, especially not to testify or face trial.)

So with infinite money, multinational power, and the spur of criminal indictment digging into his fat arse, the economy just might crash, gas just might go back over four bucks a gallon, and other candidates' planes just might fall out of the sky. That's about the sort of thing Jeb is going to need to get close.

But he only needs to get close, doesn't he?

But he'll be back....

But he'll be back,

When the election season is new,

And he'll have more bad ideas to spew,

And Republicans will ask, "what the fuck's he talking about?",

We. Will. Too.

He needs to shut up and win his stupid election.

I am really rooting for this guy, as should we all. He's got all the qualities we Democrats want a Republican Speaker to have: no damned sense and never at peace with his own rabid herd.

But he's in danger of losing the position of Speaker to someone smarter and better qualified. Please, tell your gerrymandered Republican Congressperson to support Kevin McCarthy today!

Edit: Dammit. I should have kept my mouth shut.

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