Opposition to the very idea of Obamacare… the Affordable Health Care Act… by the Republicans was always a simple, two-pronged idea.
1. We hate Barack Obama. He should not be president. We have ideological reasons, some of us have racist reasons, many of us are willing to believe he is an illegal, foreign agent who shouldn’t even be allowed to be president. We will oppose everything he stands for, especially the idea that health care is a right that the federal government can help to make accessible to as many Americans as possible through this law, which will bankrupt the country in short order.
2. Republican politicians, from the most moderate to the tea-party-est whackjob “Freedom” Caucusites alway agreed on their hate for Obama, but would never admit their opposition to the ACA wasn’t that they were worried it would miserably fail… it was their fear it would SUCCEED. Republicans opposed the Social Security Act in 1935, The Medicare Act in 1965, and the Affordable Care Act in 2010. Three strikes and they knew they’d be out.
Fear of poverty and sickness, not just in old age but for one’s lifetime, has been addressed, not perfectly, by those three laws. One of the 3 is not like the others, in that there were no continuous, sustained efforts to repeal and actually undermine SS and Medicare after they passed. Yes, Reagan RAILED and campaigned against Medicare before its passage, but 10 and 14 years later when he ran for president he didn’t promise to repeal it on Day One. Or ever. In fact, Social Security, and Medicare (and Medicaid) have been altered and improved upon since their beginnings. Now Trump and his Band of Losers face the music, and so far all we’ve heard is that they lie about the current overall state of Obamacare and promise to do everything to continue to sabotage the current law, punishing millions of Americans in the process.
So, Republicans… do you love and care about real Americans, or does your never-ending hate for Barack Obama and your fear the law is succeeding in spite of your efforts to screw it up override your now-discredited ideological quest to repeal and replace with something 100 times worse? Tell us more about your “patient-centered” ideas, please.
It’s important, as we careen towards November, that Rush Limbaugh‘s single-minded focus on the Clintons is the main reason that his media empire grew to such great heights during the 1990s. At this point, lobbing verbal bombs at Hillary seems almost reflexive. Listeners would tune in on their radios daily during the Clinton administration to hear Rush attacking Bill and Hillary for any number of sins (Whitewater, Travelgate, etc.)
And so it came to pass that the radio show wasn’t enough of a platform for spotlighting the sins of Bill and Hillary Clinton. Rush Limbaugh, the TV show ran in syndication for four years and was produced by future Fox News head honcho Roger Ailes. In fact, there has been much speculation that had the Limbaugh TV show been more successful, Ailes would not have been available to crank up Fox News
Limbaugh’s television show was supposed to be an conservative alternative to those late night shows that were (allegedly) brainwashing America with their liberal slant. After all, how many times did parents shake their head in horror at some lefty drivel spouted by Arsenio Hall (answer: None)
One particular incident from the Limbaugh TV show is particularly instructive and we’ll work from this source material
It was November 6, 1992 and America had just elected it’s first Baby Boomer president. Millions of Americans were becoming comfortable with the First Family to be and the prospect of having the first child in the White House since Amy Carter in the 1970s. This You Tube video is our best visual preservation of Mr. Limbaugh’s TV show from 11/06/92 and a transcript will help us navigate what happened
It’s unclear why Mr. Limbaugh is wearing a hat which appears to rep Yale. I’m not sure if he’s paying tribute to his fallen leader, George H.W. Bush or sending a bat signal to his future leader, George W. Bush, but I’m sure that, whatever the reason, it’s hilarious. Perhaps Yale had just instructed women on campus that “no means no” or some other liberal claptrap
In any case, the master is riffing on a piece by David Hinckley of the New York Daily News
So, my friends, in today’s New York Daily News right here, holding it here in my formerly nicotine-stained fingers, it’s the obligatory in-out list. Every time there’s a massive change somewhere, people are in, people are out. I’m now out. It says about me on here, Rush Limbaugh, loud-mouthed conservative and Bush favorite, trusts no one to the left of Pat Buchanan. He’s out.’ You know, they wish. In their dreams
The crowd slavishly applauds, as though fed their cue from a blinking sign in a television studio. Oh, wait!
David Hinckley of–of the New York Daily News wrote this, and what he has–he’s got–it’s very strange. He says, In: A cute kid in the White House. Out: Cute dog in the White House.’ Could–could we see the cute kid? Let’s take a look at–see who is the cute kid in the White House
He pivots, like a true pro, to see what’s on the monitor. This pops us
He then mock protests, as though he is terribly offended
No, no, no. That’s not the kid
Then, this picture shows up
That’s–that’s the kid. We’re trying to..
Crowd applauds because the sign tells them to
Later, El Rushbo pleads
There I go. My friends, I apologize again. I — that’s the third time the crew makes a mistake by showing you Millie the dog when I intended to show you Chelsea Clinton, and then I followed with that terrible story. I’m — I hope you’ll forgive me. I’m fatigued. I’m tired. I really don’t — in fact, you know what I’ll do? Let’s pretend this is a daytime talk show and that I’m a guest on, say, Sally, Phil or whatever. How can I make amends to you for what I just did? I can spank myself. People who spank themselves, next RUSH. Watch this. (Rush stands)
I’ll do it with my left hand. I — I’m right-handed, so it won’t hurt as much. Do it with my left hand.
(Rush spanks himself, screaming and crying; written on screen, Ouch!!!’)
It’s actually much worse when you realize that he admitted they did that joke three (3) times. In various forums over the years, Limbaugh has claimed it was a technical error, which is a lie because:
His television show was pre-recorded (vs. live), so any technical errors could have been fixed with editing before air
Otherwise, what’s the damn joke
On November 10, 1992, Limbaugh offered a “heartfelt” apology
And I’m terribly sorry. I don’t — look, that takes no talent whatsoever and I have a lot of talent. I don’t need to get laughs by commenting on people’s looks, especially a young child who’s done nothing wrong. I mean, she can’t control the way she looks. And we really — we do not — we do not do that on this kind of show. So put a picture up of her now and so we can square this.
(Photo shown of Bill and Chelsea Clinton, who is making a sour face)
I reached out my hand, “Mr. President, it’s a pleasure to meet you”. We shook hands and so forth , and he hung around for two or three minutes, maybe five
Here’s hoping that in the future, Limbaugh comes into contact with former President Hillary Rodham Clinton at some swanky Manhattan steakhouse. And, in my mind’s eye, they exchange pleasantries and chat amiably for a few minutes, as Limbaugh’s current wife tells him to turn up his hearing aid
But, would you really blame her if she slapped the snot out of him?
Many people are talking about the new Elon University poll, showing Governor McCrory trailing trailing Attorney General Roy Cooper 48-42 (with a 4% margin of error) ahead of their November showdown. Matthew Winkler of Bloomberg is scratching his head because Pat’s commitment to HB2 has hindered his ability to tell the “Carolina Comeback” story. SLOW DOWN, MATTHEW! Even before McCrory signed the “Bathroom Bill” into law, he was a fairly unpopular governor, who faced stiff competition from a seasoned, organized foe. With Donald Trump on top of the ticket, the uphill climb would probably be too great. With Ted Cruz, still tough, but doable
When you go back in history and examine North Carolina’s gubernatorial races, you see that the bad news is even more profound for McCrory. Since 1980, incumbent governors have run for re-election four times (winning all four contests) and they averaged 57.25% of the statewide vote. Even if we take away Jim Hunt’s gaudy numbers (62% in 1980 and 56% in 1996), we get to a level of support that’s 55.5%. Even if we give McCrory all four points in the margin of error, that only gets him to 46%, which is a little less than Richard Vinroot did in 2000 against Mike Easley, but a little better than Patrick Ballantine did against Easley four years later (Jim Martin’s 55% is the worst performance by an incumbent since 1980)
But, what is the absolute floor for Pat McCrory in November? It’s a safe bet that he’ll outperform Beverly Lake’s 37% in 1980.If we throw that one out, the second-place finisher in North Carolina has done no better than 43% (which was what McCrory’s challenger Walter Dalton earned in 2012). But, remember, those were all non incumbents, who faced major obstacles in terms of basic resources like name recognition. Jim Gardner in 1992 and Robin Hayes in 1996 both were fairly well-known to followers of state politics, but they didn’t have the name recognition of Jim Hunt. That’s probably why each garnered only 43% of the vote
The Cooper campaign must be ecstatic. Cooper has floated around Raleigh for a while, but he doesn’t have the name recognition of Pat McCrory, who was fairly well-known as Mayor of Charlotte before mounting a losing then a winning campaign for governor
Curiously, North Carolina’s gubernatorial races haven’t been terribly close in the past 36 years, with the exception of McCory’s losing effort, a 50-47 affair in 2008
Of course, there’s a lot of ground to cover until November and many factors simply can’s be accounted for. North Carolina’s Voter ID law will be in effect for the first time in a general election. These laws have traditionally knocked a couple of points off of Democratic totals. We also don’t know who will be on top of the Republican ticket come November. Political experts say that a Trump nomination could depress GOP turnout. A Cruz nomination would only be a little more helpful to McCrory. And, of course, any number of catastrophic events could change the election. But, still, Cooper’s got to be happy about his standing six months ’til judgment day
It remains to be seen if a repeal of HB2 would help McCrory much. At this point, the damage may already be done. But, before we get too cocky about Roy Cooper’s chances, remember a North Carolina incumbent governor hasn’t been defeated since 1892…which is a tad misleading because the position was a one (term) and done proposition until the state constitution was amended, allowing Hunt to run for a second term in ’80
Beating an incumbent is never an easy task and the Cooper campaign would probably be happy with a neck-and-neck performance, at this point. As it is, they’re ahead of the game. But, we’ve got a lot of game left to be played
Brad and Britt spoke with NC state Senator Dan Blue (D) about North Carolina’s controversial HB2 law, the so-called “Bathroom Bill”. Blue detailed the special session of the General Assembly that took place in March and how Democrats were completely shut out of any discussion about HB2
Blue went on to detail the economic damage done to the state, including the cancellation of a PayPal operations center in Charlotte, which would have provided about 400 jobs. Deutsche Bank, Red Hat, and many others have decided against planned expansions in North Carolina. Additionally, Charlotte and Raleigh have both reported several conventions or gatherings that have either cancelled or said they will not consider coming to the state, costing North Carolinians millions in hotel tax revenues, restaurant revenue, and related revenues
Blue stated that it was his hope that Governor McCrory and Republican leaders will see the light and repeal HB2 so that North Carolina’s image can recover nationally. Brad and Britt bring up the fact that tourism season in the state is just beginning and many NC families rely on tourism to put bread on the table. A tourism boycott could severely hurt North Carolina families. Additionally, North Carolina agriculture is a $70 billion a year industry that could suffer from a boycott
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DISCLAIMER: This post is full of spoilers! You have been warned!
I admit that I was pissed when I saw it
I had told everyone they wouldn’t do the assassination attempt thing. After all, West Wingand Scandal had already done it (not to mention films like Bulworth and Taxi Driver). Should I prepare for Julia Louis-Dreyfuss to take a bullet next season on VEEP?
But, there it was in episode 4: Zoe Barnes’ old pal Lucas Goodwin attempts to exact revenge on Frank Underwood by going all John Hickley, Jr. on him. NOTE: This happens as Underwood is approaching some protestors to discuss why they hate him, so NOBODY DO THIS! If you’re a politician, just ignore the haters in person and throw shade on them on Twitter. Much safer
But, after I got over my disappointment at HOC‘s recycling, I chilled out and enjoyed a great season. This is a nice rebound from a somewhat underwhelming season 3. I would rank the seasons, thusly (descending order): 2,1,4,3
The interesting addition to this season is Frank’s dreams/visions which run from the semi-erotic (think Eyes Wide Shut) ultra violent (Quentin Tarantino meets David Lynch). He dreams of murdering Claire before the assassination and then, while in a coma, he dreams of banging Zoe. The ethereal feel of Frank’s subconscious are woven throughout the season and add a textural changeup
If Robin Wright doesn’t win an Emmy for her work this season, it won’t happen. Claire Underwood deftly reconciles with her husband (kind of), attempts to run for office in Texas, make amends with her dying mother (played by the wickedly talented Ellen Burstyn, who probably deserves a supporting Emmy), watches over her wounded hubby, negotiates a deal with Russia, and maneuvers her way onto the party’s ticket with Frank. Lady MacBeth needs an Adderall
Frank survives the shooting and faces down Republican challenger Will Conway, a handsome veteran who has a family so beautiful that they would make Norman Rockwell weep. Claire arranges for Frank to be embarrassed in South Carolina by some old pictures of his father in Klan garb, so Heather Dunbar beats Frank in his home state. That’s right: Having a family member with Klan connections hurts you in The Palmetto State these day
Heather continues to dog Frank until the press finds out that she met with Lucas prior to the assassination. She is investigated and does the unthinkable: She tells the truth. Her campaign dies
Meanwhile, Conway continues to crush Frank, even after the president climbs out of his hospital bed. So, Frank and Claire deftly engineer a plan to put Mrs. Underwood on the ticket as vice-president, screwing Secretary of State Catherine Durant and throwing the Democratic Convention in Atlanta into a tizzy. It’s Claire’s mother who suggests that if Claire helps her end her life, it could be a political bonus for the Underwoods. After her mother’s death, Claire returns to Atlanta from Texas where she secures the spot as Franks’ running mate
Then, Frank has to face the threat from ICO (HOC‘s version of ISIS). As Conway scores political point after political point, President Underwood reaches his limit and allows an American to be beheaded without military intervention, under the presumption that showing toughness to terrorists will reap political benefits. And that’s the end of season 4
We get to see some old friends (Zoe in dream form, Freddy the Rib Man, and even our old buddy President Walker) and a few new ones (Neve Campbell is just great as Claire’s consigliere). Ultimately, this is a satisfying season and, I think, we could get two more from Beau Willimon and his troops. I had previously thought that next season might be the last, but we haven’t even made it through re-election
As for Frank, it becomes clear that he is the BizarroJed Bartlet. While both are Democrats and both have been shot, Jed is from the North and Frank is from the South. Jed attended the University of Notre Dame, while Frank went to the (fake) Citadel. Frank lies for political gain, while Jed’s lies are about his illness. Also, Frank kills his political enemies while Bartlet tends to hire his. Also, Jed Bartlet doesn’t arrange lovers for his wife
The 4th wall breaks are used judiciously and always make perfect sense. It’s really amazing that Willimon doesn’t overuse the device. It has become something we all expect, so it seems that the audience anticipates it and the more you delay it, the more they want it. Kind of like a rock band doing their hit from thirty years ago: The boys may get tired of doing it, but the audience wants to hear it every night
Kevin Spacey so inhabits Frank Underwood that it seems almost cliche to talk about how good he is. In fact, the assassination attempt and subsequent coma give the rest of the cast a chance to shine. So, in that, I suppose the plot device should be seen as a plus. Frankly, given our violent culture and our history, it’s almost impossible not to do a presidential drama without addressing violence to our Commander-in-Chief. As Frank points out, one in 10 presidents are assassinated and 1 in 4 are shot at. I suppose the sadness is that getting shot is such a part of our reality, not our fantasy
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BradandBrittAmazon.com is a great way to get the stuff you need AND help support us. Lil’ Rush has some observations on the State of the Union speech and Nikki Haley’s response, LA gets football and the Raiders are the odd men out, Waffle House madness, working in the food service industry, Iran captures US seamen, Lenny Skutnik is a prick. twitter.com/BradandBrittfacebook.com/BradandBrittShow
Still time for you to get great deals on your Christmas gift AND help out B and B by shopping at BradandBrittAmazon.com. Lil’ Rush deplores what happened with Hillary and Odell Beckham, Jr, B and B discuss Beckham’s meltdown and Tom Brady’s mysterious business partner, price of gas is down, Bernie supporters go NUTS! Follow us on twitter: @BradandBritt facebook: fb.com/BradandBrittShow