DNC RNC

MSNBC embraces capitalism by looping socialism

MSNBC has decided to do a non stop loop of Obama’s 16 minute 2004 DNC speech until President Trump’s wall address to the nation is over. It is indeed a choice as an independent network to embrace the free market to cater to its audience.

Although MSNBC should not be surprised if Trump or Huckabee Sanders skip the network’s reporters during question time at White House briefings. Easy argument to make that their viewers don’t care much for what their leader has to say in any event. Best pick networks that have audiences interested in the machinations at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

MSNBC spokesman, Harland Dorrinson, claimed the cable news station’s own research showed next to zero people wanted to watch the national event and the rerun was a better bet. Would love to see the polling figures of who was asked. Staff cafeteria perhaps?

CM has argued for a long time that reduction in Trump’s airtime by the mainstream media is their strongest asset in taking the wind out of his sails. However to date, even though 99% of the coverage is negative (sometimes deserved), Trump is on a non-stop loop with hysteric items of news with next to no relevance dominating coverage. After all Melania wore Timberlands in Iraq – a source of national importance to Americans.

Despite this, Trump’s popularity ratings remain ahead of the majority of the very world leader’s that MSNBC fawn over. These are facts as distasteful as they are to many.

It should be known that there has been a long standing unwritten rule when a sitting president addresses the nation that the media complies for the sake of getting that message out to all citizens. By all means MSNBC could run a panel of experts to vilify the bigoted man behind the wall construction after the address with rigorous debate. Instead they chose to snub. On the other hand it is fair to say in today’s world, anyone wanting to watch will be able to do via C-SPAN or social media.

Ultimately markets will judge whether MSNBC got the viewer stats to back the strategy but surely there was a better opportunity to draw audiences than a 15 yo loop which only cements its reputation for overwhelming partisan bias. Perhaps Reagan’s 1987 speech in Berlin calling for Gorbachev to “tear down this wall” would have been a more apt address to throw two fingers up at Trump? Perhaps even he might get the subtlety of the barb? Use your imagination MSNBC!

Write Ocasio-Cortez off at your peril

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez might be the New Democrat piñata for a band of Republican supporters but beware. While it is true she is weak on facts, how economics works and a whole other range of political topics, she has 1.9mn followers on Twitter, more than Nany Pelosi. If she gets the right sort of campaign team behind her she could become a serious threat to the GOP and incumbent Democrats alike.

She didn’t really have any dollars to fight her nomination on the NY Dem ticket but she booted the 14 year incumbent Joe Crowley and won the 2018 mid term with 80% of the vote. Hardly something achieved by a complete fool, wouldn’t you say?

Think about it. She’s a millennial. She’s deeply socialist, pro climate change and all the pet causes of her generation. The latest shrill surrounding her dancing while at college is frankly pathetic. Who cares?

CM was critical of those who bashed Republicans over a lack of intelligence. It was a key part of why people refrained from openly supporting Trump in the lead up to the 2016 election. The polls and mainstream media all pointed to a Clinton coronation and were rudely shocked when the opposite happened. The ballot box is all that matters. The irony of Paddy Power paying out those who bet on a Clinton win. That’s how badly so many got it wrong. They completely missed the mood.

Pelosi and Feinstein are 78 and 85 years old respectively. Ocasio-Cortez is not even 30. We can already see the incumbent Democrats become uncomfortable as the younger generation wants to take the party hard left. Ocasio-Cortez’s pulling power is evident. Media attention is never far away.

Don’t forget she turned on Senator Kirsten Gillibrand after her resounding  nomination win saying, “Unsurprising, but disappointing that @SenGillibrand didn’t even bother to talk to nor consider me before endorsing…You‘d think a progressive leader would at least be interested in how a no-corporate money Bronx Latina triggered the 1st NY-14 primary in 14 years on prog issues. 

Republican supporters who troll her Twitter feeds only enhance her bidding. They lift her profile and if anything only cause more millennials to rush to her defence. Her retweets are up there with Trump who has 30x more followers. Don’t dismiss it. Trump’s rise to POTUS came from Democrats and mainstream media coverage that reported on pointless trivialities so far removed from what voters were screaming for.

If AO-C gets a good team behind her she will be a force to be reckoned with. As is so often the case with people so easily dismissed is that she becomes a sleeper. She can only improve how to come across more intelligently. She ticks plenty of identity boxes in a world that seems to place greater emphasis on diversity and inclusion.

She maybe new to the game but it will be interesting how the incumbent Democrats deal with her. Will they try to suppress her or mold her into a dynamo? Her storming of Pelosi’s office alongside environmental activists suggests that maybe the old guard Democrats try to keep a lid on her but sadly they lack time and adaption to new age technology on their side which Ocasio-Cortez has in spades.

Write her off at your peril.

Elizabeth Warren’s New Year’s message


Elizabeth Warren may have announced she is running for President of the United States in 2020 but this New Year’s video is utterly cringeworthy. Apart from the fact she cracks open a beer to pretend to be down to earth she only managed to garner 15 live viewers with her stream. Way to go for the election campaign. Where were her in house media managers? This video is such cannon fodder for her opponents, both Democrat and Republican alike. Embarrassing. At the very least she should have channeled former Australian PM RJL Hawke on how to consume beer for an audience.

What an accolade!!?

For the first time in 17 years, someone other than Hillary Clinton was named the most admired woman in America. The Gallup poll asked 1025 people across America who were the most admired people in the US. For Clinton to win for the last 16 years makes one wonder who Gallup was asking? Heavy concentrations in inner city zones in NY and CA perhaps?

We shouldn’t be surprised. How often have vloggers entered US campuses and filmed students who can identify Kim Kardashian at 100 yards in a picture but can’t identify any US politician outside of the President.

Was Kylie Jenner, the 21-yo cosmetics queen, who has become a self made billionaire not in with a shot of aspiration and admiration?

What about Simone Biles, the rubbery gymnast who blew the competition away at the 2016 Rio Olympics?

Even Serena Williams, despite her tantrums, surely was in to take this award once in the last 16 years for her tennis prowess.

What about Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez? The young 28-yo blitzed the incumbent to steal the primary in NY and then win the mid term with 80% of the vote. She may have absolutely no idea about economics or reality but goes to show that even a “Latina from the Bronx” (as she calls herself) can pull off miracles. A note to Republicans – slagging her off for stupidity is not a winning strategy.

Nikki Haley? Without doubt a hugely impressive UN Ambassador and likely a future POTUS.

It is probably a reflection of the terrible polling of Gallup to have a 16 year consecutive winner. Then again the Obamas are no stranger to receiving awards for things undeserved like the Nobel Peace Prize 9 months into Barack Obama’s first term after achieving nothing remotely notable of mention to world peace. Even afterwards red lines were drawn in invisible ink. I’m

Who could forget Michelle Obama’s hashtag #bringbackourgirls after 300 school girls were enslaved by Boko Haram? America’s foreign policy impotence revealed in one twitter handle.

Melania Trump was never in the running especially after the mainstream media took umbrage at her wearing Timberland boots to Iraq on Christmas.

Congratulations Michelle. Now you can tell all those women you said voted the way their husbands forced them to that you know best and have an award to prove it!

Ocasio-Cortez’s DC dilemma

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One would hope that newly elected Democrat Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez would be quick on her feet when it comes to dazzling her colleagues. She is complaining she can’t afford a property in DC before her $172,500pa salary kicks in 3-4 months down the line.

She could do three things:

1) ask her multi million dollar gated mansion, rent-a-cop guarded Democratic colleagues to let her stay in one of the spare rooms. Obama has an $8.5mn 8-bedroom mansion in DC. Surely she won’t cramp them too much especially with Malia at college and Sasha likely to move out soon.

2) crowd fund for the 3 months which will likely win her millions  so she can buy a place of her own.

3) or in her own words to justify everything that costs money  – “you just pay for it”

How long will it take to learn from Chuck, Nancy, Maxine, Elizabeth and so on that some pigs are more equal than others? My guess isn’t very long. First world problems for someone with third world policies.

 

Does the data show Donald in the dumpster?

Midterm

This is a simple schematic of first term presidents and the results at the ballot box of their first mid term. Since 1910, the incumbent parties have invariably lost ground. More interestingly, Democrats had control of either/both House of Reps and Senate during Nixon, Ford, Reagan and Bush Sr – all Republicans. Republican Presidents Taft, Harding, Hoover, Eisenhower and Trump lost the House at the midterms. Truman, Clinton and Obama suffered the same fate for the Democrats.

Trump achieved the highest number of Senate seats taken by a first term Republican president for over 100 years. George W Bush achieved rising numbers for HoR/Senate  post 9/11 but only Democrats have achieved the feat – Woodrow Wilson, FDR and JFK. Perhaps the irrelevance of the outcomes in the mid-terms is that despite the floggings Wilson, Truman, Ike, Reagan, Clinton, Bush Jr and Obama all were comfortably reelected for a second term.

Given the headwinds Trump was facing from the mainstream media, his unorthodox outbursts, twitter tirades and so forth, the electorate didn’t grant the Democrats a huge gift  they were expecting. Even worse they gave Trump a bigger authority to appoint SC justices should an opportunity arise by bumping his numbers in the Senate. Not surprising given the shocking gutter level political theatre over Justice Kavanaugh, vindicated by  victims confessing they had lied.

The Democrats should still be concerned that the $70mn spent on Beto O’Rourke came to nothing.  Beyonce also endorsed Beto. Oprah endorsed Abrams in Georgia – who is likely to lose. Taylor Swift endorsed Bredesen – who also lost. All four candidates openly supported by Obama lost. So much for celebrity power swaying electorates. It probably had a counter effect.

Even worse, in Nevada a brothel owner and reality TV star won his race despite dying last month. It is hard to work out what is the bigger tragedy. Voting for someone dead or being the competing Democrat to lose to a dead person. A Republican is to be appointed to the seat by county officials.

We shouldn’t forget that the Republicans had the highest number of sitting member retirements at a first midterm in the House of Representatives for 88 years. 25 seats had a new face. Republicans won re-election as governors in New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts and Maryland – three of them deep blue states. Where was the mainstream media on that?

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Turnout was good (for a mid term). 48.1% voted in 2018. In the last 100 years the average has been 41%. Only in 1966, did the first midterm of LBJ exceed this level at 48.7%. So much for either party causing a red or blue wave. Less than half of eligible voters showed up on November 6th 2018. More cared, but not enough.

Felons make for an interesting outlier subset. While it is hard to know their exact voting intentions, for the Gubernatorial in Georgia, would 219,431 felons have made a difference for Abrams? She trails Kemp by just under 100,000 votes. So if 55% of felons (the Georgia midterm turnout ratio) voted, 120,687 votes were up for grabs. Were it legal for Georgian state felons to vote, she would have been wise to campaign there.

Felons

Now that the Democrats have the lower house, one wonders why they have put Nancy Pelosi in charge of the House? This is possibly to be contested. Up to fifty Democrat congressmen might oppose her for Speaker. Trump couldn’t wish for a better adversary as her litany of gaffes will undoubtedly embarrass her party. Pelosi represents pretty much everything Americans have come to despise about the Democrats.

More worryingly, Maxine Waters is being put in charge of the Financial Services Committee. At a point in the cycle where financial acumen is probably most required, this is an embarrassment, made worse by her open calls for payback.

The Democrats need fresh faces. Ones that will look for bipartisan support. If the Democrats embark upon a cocktail of revenge politics and look to push for investigation after investigation in order to impeach Trump but end up with nothing they will be seen for what they are – a party completely self-absorbed with petty vendettas. The toxic Senate debacle should have given them warning enough that voters won’t tolerate more political roadkill like that going forward.  Yet Pelosi will likely use her subpoena powers to drag everything through the gutter instead of working to improve things for Americans. Failure here will only lead the electorate to conclude they wasted two years and gift wrap 2020 for Trump.

This mid-term election was anything but a slam dunk. Put aside personal hatred of Trump, look at the data and see that Americans did not write him off as many pundits predicted. It should be more scary to realise that he is probably more Teflon-Don than he was in 2016. Second biggest mid-term turnout in history, highest net gain of seats in the Senate in 100 years for a first term GOP president, record dollars thrown at Democrat candidates backed by Trump-hating billionaires. At the end of the day folks, this is just the data talking.

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