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The Wrongologist

Geopolitics, Power and Political Economy

Sunday Cartoon Blogging – May 29, 2016

Californians will be pleased to know that when Donald Trump becomes president, he can stop their drought overnight. California just went through the driest four-year period on record.

But Trump isn’t sold. He told supporters in Fresno, CA that the dry spell is bogus. Trump said the state was denying water to Central Valley farmers to prioritize the Delta smelt, a native California fish nearing extinction — or as Trump called it: “a certain kind of three-inch fish.” He told the crowd:

We’re going to solve your water problem. You have a water problem that is so insane. It is so ridiculous where they’re taking the water and shoving it out to sea…

At least we know where Trump stands on the issue:

If I win, believe me, we’re going to start opening up the water so that you can have your farmers survive.

Never mind that this is a state, not a federal issue, because Trump will win on the environment too.

In other news, Hill’s email problem gives her a few hurdles:

COW Hillarys Hurdles

So far, we’ve heard what we already knew, she broke a rule that others had broken before her. Of course, to Republicans, breaking an agency rule is proof she’s broken the law. Maybe, but rules ain’t the same as the law. She needs to put this behind her, or face death by a thousand cuts.

We got our first look at Hill’s emails:

COW Hills Emoticon

Bill & Hill feel the Bern in CA:

COW kids in car

Trump and Bernie wanted to debate. You know who the target was:

COW Trump Bernie

Apparently, we have no antibiotic for the Superbug:

COW Superbug

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The GOP plans to make the transgender toilet rule a centerpiece in the campaign:

COW Toilet

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Sunday Cartoon Blogging – October 18, 2015

Happy Sunday! From The Hill:

With the House still clueless about who its next Speaker will be, Congress has just 10 legislative days to tackle a topic at the center of some of the most pitched fiscal battles of the last several years. The deadline was moved up Thursday by Treasury Secretary Jack Lew, who told Congress it has only until Nov. 3 to raise the government’s $18.1 trillion borrowing cap.

Paul Ryan is still avoiding the opening for Speaker:

COW Speaker Opening

Mr. Obama decided to keep troops in Afghanistan until at least the end of 2017. He says that combat operations in Afghanistan are over. He says the job of “train, advise, assist” won’t change. Mr. Obama says our troops just need to stick around until the training begins to take hold:

COW President Chelsea

Bernie gives Hillary a hand at the Democratic debate:

COW Thanks Bernie

And the Benghazi hearings are about to start:

COW Benghazi Hearings

Here is the NRA/GOP vision of school safety:

COW Skool Gunz

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Hillary?

An important survey by Pew released this week says that Republicans are looking for “New Ideas”: (emphasis by the Wrongologist)

Since March, the share of all registered voters who say it is more important for a presidential candidate to have “new ideas and a different approach” has surged – with virtually all of the increase coming among Republican and Republican-leaning voters. Today, by more than two-to-one (65% to 29%), Republican and Republican-leaning registered voters say it is more important that a candidate have new ideas than “experience and a proven record.”

(The survey was conducted on Sept. 22-27 among 1,502 adults, including 1,136 registered voters.)

Pew reports that Democrats have less interest in new ideas: 50% say it is more important for a candidate to have experience and a proven record, while 42% view new ideas and a different approach as more important. This is little changed from March (46% experience, 49% new ideas).

And Pew reports that Hillary has a bigger lead over Sanders than other polls show. Their poll includes Biden:

PEW Support for Dem CandidatesThis is a very different result from other polls which tend to show Sanders just a few points behind Clinton, (at least in New Hampshire) and which say that Biden hurts Clinton enough to open a path to the nomination for Sanders, should Biden enter the race.

But despite the Pew results, many Democrats think 2016 looks grim. Here is the Denver Post reporting that Colorado’s Democratic Governor John Hickenlooper used those exact words:

Gov. John Hickenlooper on Thursday became the latest Hillary Clinton supporter to express doubt about her candidacy for president, telling a Denver audience that the 2016 election is ‘kind of grim, to be blunt’.

The Denver Post also quoted former Democratic Gov. Dick Lamm, who (speaking about the email issue) said he believes:

There’s a one in three chance that if something worse does happen, that will cost her the nomination.

From 30,000 feet, the presidential race includes Hillary, a person many people don’t trust, who seems to lack the vision thing, and Bernie Sanders, who self-describes as a democratic socialist when he’s merely an FDR Democrat.

It just shows how ingrained the memes of the right are in our society, when a New Deal Democrat honestly believes that he is a Democratic Socialist.

Bernie should call himself an FDR Democrat, since he has to deal with corporate media in order to win. The Democratic Socialist label easily morphs into socialist, and then on to Marxist by our media elite. This means that intellectually lazy voters will misunderstand what Sanders is really about. Better for him to conflate his candidacy with a period of American economic recovery than for him to get twisted by the media echo chamber into a second coming of Lenin, or a Jewish Fidel.

And right now, Pew says that the Republican voters are more engaged in the process:

PEW More engaged votersThis shows that Dems are about as engaged as they were when Barak Obama was running against Hillary for the nomination, but Republican engagement has increased steadily since 2007.

Considering that the Democratic base seems mostly on auto pilot, it could be a lot worse, particularly since the Democratic National Committee is headed by Debbie Wasserman Schultz, who gave us a Republican House and Senate.

 

 

The key question is which candidate can keep the Obama coalition together. Today, it seems to be Hillary:

• If Bernie is the candidate, money is going to be a huge problem and not just for him. How does the DNC raise money? How do other Democratic candidates raise money with Bernie running against the big money donors? It’s all well and good to rail against the campaign financing laws, but Senate and Congressional candidates have to raise money too.
• Can the Dems win the White House AND the Senate on $30 individual donations?

If Hillary is the candidate, the issue will be Hillary making the case that she won’t preside over a third Obama term. Or, the central issue in Hillary’s candidacy could be her husband Bill, and a third Clinton term.

The assumption by Democrats in the primary contests should be that Republicans will still control the House. Even with a Democratic win, neither Hillary nor Sanders would be able to get much of a domestic agenda passed.

Either way, 2016 will be a repeat, more or less, of 2012, with the significant addition of Iran, Russia, and ISIS on the foreign policy front. That may make 2016 more of a balanced issue election.

All Dems can reasonably expect from a presidential win in 2016 is Supreme Court nominations, holding on to the Obama gains, and pushing the country to return towards more economic equality than in the years since 2008.

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Sunday Cartoon Blogging – August 30, 2015

That light from the city on the hill isn’t a beacon. It’s the flash of gun fire.

The snuff video of two TV journalists this week got everyone talking about gun ownership and gun control for the umpteenth time. Phys.org pointed out that despite the fact the US ranks in the middle among other industrialized countries in virtually every form of crime, and only has 5% of the world’s population, we have had 31% of the mass shootings since 1966.

By cutting off federal funding for research and stymieing data collection and sharing, the NRA has tried to do to the study of gun violence what climate deniers have done to the science of global warming. Mother Jones had a chart for you to consider:

Gun Ownership and Gun Deaths
Gun ownership is a part of our culture. We could have a conversation about why Americans need so many guns, but the current level of gun ownership is not going away. And there is a large disconnect between the current gun control proposals and the facts in the Virginia case. The TV killer wouldn’t have failed any test, either now in place, or contemplated under the new proposals.

A simple solution to the problem of gun deaths would be to require gun owners to have liability insurance for any gun that they buy. Mr. Market (beloved by the right) would then come up with solutions to keep that liability insurance costs low enough that people could own their guns, but fewer third-party deaths and injuries would occur, and there would be compensation for victims. You could still carry guns, but you would have to be able to produce proof of insurance. Like driving a car.

On to cartoons. The gun culture has a new Caliph:

COW Gun Culture

New media and old media loved talking about the killings, live on your TV:

COW News Cycle

Hillary’s week didn’t improve, so she got help:

COW Hillary Email

I’m you from 2015, Hillary. I’ve come back to help you set up your e-mail.

Biden called in a few favors:

COW Biden Back Rubs

Trump’s week was fine. Republicans? Not so much:

COW Anchor Baby

China’s stock market fell:

COW Bear Market

 

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Sunday Cartoon Blogging – August 23, 2015

Another bad week for many people in the public eye. But let’s start with Malcolm Gladwell’s rant in the NYT about university endowments in which he focused on Yale’s endowment. He says:

Last year, Yale paid about $480 million to private equity fund managers as compensation — about $137 million in annual management fees, and another $343 million in performance fees, also known as carried interest — to manage about $8 billion, one-third of Yale’s endowment.

He tells us that, of the $1 billion the endowment contributed to the university’s operating budget, only $170 million was earmarked for tuition assistance, fellowships and prizes. He reported that private equity fund managers also received more than students at four other endowments; Harvard, the University of Texas, Stanford and Princeton.

He makes another great point, that university endowments are exempt from corporate income tax because universities support the advancement and dissemination of knowledge. The tax advantage also benefits the fund managers whose carried interest is taxed at lower capital gains rates rather than ordinary income rates. It isn’t a coincidence that hedge fund managers return the favor to their large university clients. Kenneth C. Griffin gave Harvard $150 million in 2014. This year, Stephen A. Schwarzman, the chairman of the private equity giant Blackstone, pledged $150 million to Yale toward a new student center. John A. Paulson, another hedge fund manager, topped both when he gave Harvard $400 million in June.

Maybe these university endowments need to do more to support students and faculty, and less to support fund managers, if they are to keep their tax-exempt status.

On to cartoons. With the email server and new polls, Hillary did not have a good week:

COW Weekend at BerniesMaybe if the Obama years hadn’t decimated the Democratic bench for an entire generation, we wouldn’t have to rely on two senior citizens slugging it out for the chance to call the White House their retirement home.

Another senior, Mr. Biden, awaits the call, if Hillary falters:

COW Biden Awaits Call

Amazon also had a bad week:

COW Amazon Fail

Subway & Jared Fogel had bad weeks too:

COW Jared

Wannabe adulterers also had a bad week:

COW Ashley Madison

 

While Jimmy Carter gave us all a nice moment:

COW Carter

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Sunday Cartoon Blogging – March 15, 2015 (Costa Rica Edition)

You may have heard that there was a volcanic eruption in Costa Rica. It occurred while the Wrongologist and Ms. Oh So Right were seated in a prime location on the runway (yes, in a plane) at Newark Airport. But airlines do not willingly fly into volcano ash, so we had to wait another 24 hours for the San Jose airport in Costa Rica to reopen. So we did, and here we are, walking around the Curu National Preserve @6:30am, after getting to bed after midnight local time. If you’re traveling to Costa Rica, visit https://www.buenavistadelrincon.com/costa-rica-wellness-tours/ to learn about wellness tours.

Here is a photo of a female spider monkey from the early Saturday walk:

DSCN3080

Now, on to cartoons. It seems that Hillary and the Republican effort to torpedo the Iran negotiations continued to dominate the news.

The messaging on both sides is the same:
COW Iran Parallels

Republicans see no irony in their position vis a vis Iran:

COW Iran Bedfellows

 

Clinton server problems:

COW Hillary's Servers

 

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Sunday Cartoon Blogging – March 8, 2015

March is Wrongo’s favorite month, because it has March Madness™ and Daylight Savings Time.

Yesterday was the 50th anniversary of the Selma march. On Jan. 14, 1965, newly elected Alabama Gov. George Wallace said in his inaugural address in front of the Alabama State Capitol:

Today I have stood, where once Jefferson Davis stood, and took an oath to my people… I draw the line in the dust and toss the gauntlet before the feet of tyranny…and I say…segregation today, segregation tomorrow and segregation forever.

On March 7, 1965, the first Selma to Montgomery march began and ended with the events of “Bloody Sunday,” when 600 civil rights marchers, asking for the right of black Alabama residents to register to vote, were attacked by state and local police with billy clubs and tear gas at the Edmund Pettus Bridge.

On March 9, 1965, another march by 2,500 this time, including many who had come from other parts of the country, was led by Dr. King and others to the Edmund Pettus Bridge, where a court order prevented them from going all the way to Montgomery.

Finally, on March 21, 1965, Federal District Court Judge Frank Johnson ruled that the march could proceed and, the 4-night march began in Selma. 8,000 started the march, but only 300 were allowed to make the entire 54-mile trek to Montgomery. Let us return to March 25, 1965, and read some of Dr. King’s words to the nation that day:

I know you are asking today, “How long will it take”?…I come to say to you this afternoon, however difficult the moment, however frustrating the hour, it will not be long, because “truth crushed to earth will rise again.” How long? Not long, because “no lie can live forever.”
How long? Not long, because the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.

On to a busy week in the laughable. The ACA was on trial in the Supreme Court:

COW Supreme Question

 

The DOJ cites Ferguson, MO police for institutional racism:

COW Ferguson Swerve

 

Netanyahu and the Republicans see things the same way:

COW Bibi And R's

 

Hillary’s email flap may or may not be a big problem, but it reminds America of Bill:

COW Didn't Email

 

Some folks seem to be changing their minds about Hillary after the email flap:

COW Hillarys Appeal

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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