A Nerd Girl's Perspective

My Thoughts on News, Politics, Food, Crafting, Geek Culture, Sociology, and Much More —— Courtney C Horne

Tag: obama

My Favorite SOTU Crowd Response

My Favorite SOTU Crowd Response

In this video, at almost exactly 35 minutes you can see a congressman responding adorably to the min wage raise call Obama made. 


The State of the Union – Midterm Prep

Obama is aware that the house GOP is not going to ever be cooperative with him at any level. They don’t want to pass disaster relief. They are being terrible dicks about the violence against women act. They won’t pass infrastructure upgrades. Heck they won’t even vote on most things. 

They keep refusing to cooperate to the point of driving the country off a cliff. Threatening government shutdowns. Threatening to not raise the debt limit. Essentially just being obstructionists and insane. They control one house of one branch of the federal government and completely paralyze the whole thing. 

So Obama knows that any agenda points he presents that require congress are impossible. What does that turn his SOTU into? Midterm prep.

The administration knows that the vast majority of their agenda requires the democrats to take congress back. In order to do that, the democrats need a strategy. Watching the state of the union, I think that strategy is to make Boehner make an impossible choice. 

Obama proposed a lot of stuff that the sane part of the GOP (the ones who live in swing districts) would want to vote for. A higher minimum wage. (which surprised everyone, I am sure the GOP is still scrambling for a response to it) Upgrading infrastructure. Closing tax loopholes. 

The insane tea party branch of the GOP will undoubtedly squawk in terror at all of that. They have a history of opposing min wages. (Ron Paul said it should be eliminated) Goodness knows that federal spending on infrastructure isn’t something they are fond of. And closing tax loopholes? Well Norquist has said that violates his anti tax pledge. 

So now Boehner has to choose. Either he can help out the swing district members of his parties by working with the democrats to vote on popular things or he can give in to the tea party. He helps the swing district members and the party becomes further divided and the GOP purity tests out their moderates and destroys themselves. Or he gives in to the tea party and costs them swing seats. 

Obama also talked about practical gun reform (background checks, high capacity magazine bans etc). His focus was that gun violence victims deserved congress to at least vote on things and not just ignore it. So when they don’t vote on anything that helps out some for 2014 as well. 

In summary, the state of the union is about laying the groundwork for 2014. Because goodness knows the House GOP will keep Obama from getting anything done. 


What’s Wrong with Sleeping ’till Noon?

The Stranger’s blog slog has been featuring Obama voters talking about how early they get up to work, etc as a response to the GOP asserting that Obama voters are all lazy and sleep until noon.

Slog has pretty thoroughly illustrated that this is not an accurate characterization of Obama voters.

I want to ask why is sleeping til noon the way to personify laziness?

My husband and I both work nights. He works until one AM and I work until midnight to two AM. After getting off, eating dinner, doing stuff around the house, etc we commonly aren’t in bed until 5 or 6 am. So yeah, we sleep until noon a lot. That doesn’t make us lazy; it makes us shift workers.

Millions of Americans work nights and sleep well past noon. Those people are both Obama and Romney voters. They work in the service industry, chemical plants, public service jobs, medical jobs, as emergency workers, etc.

I volunteered on a crisis hotline and one of the few paid positions there was for overnight staff working 11 pm to 7 am. I am sure most of them slept until noon the night after they worked. Were they lazy answering calls from suicidal individuals at 3 or 4 am?

Working nights isn’t somehow less valid then working days. If someone is self-employed and they chose to get up at noon and work late into the night that doesn’t make them lazy. The implication of virtue based on sleep schedule is ridiculous.

And Now the Far Right Talks Secession

The democratic party could not have hoped for a reaction to Obama’s reelection more perfect than the cries of “SECEDE!!” now coming from the far right.

The left was upset after both the W elections but rather than cry secede they talked about expatriating to Europe or Canada. Or Australia. I met a expat who left for Australia because of Reagan and found ridiculous the conservatives talking about moving there since Australia has both universal health care and a strong labor movement. The far right isn’t just talking about leaving to countries that have policies they demonize in the US though. They also have latched on to secession.

There is a notably difference between talking about removing yourself from a situation and talking about starting a civil war. Despite any claims from those yelling secede about being peaceful, they are essentially yelling for a new Confederacy.

I suspect in their new fantasy Confederacy anyone who wasn’t a white evangelical male would have a pretty terrible time.  There is something threatening and violent about this that I think should make anyone who isn’t the picture of America that the far right holds dear pay attention. I mean do we really think black people would not be re-segregated in a post secession Louisiana?

Next the southern red states yelling secede the loudest also commonly get more back in federal money than the pay in federal taxes. How long could Mississippi really support itself before every shred of public services in the state just collapsed?

I realize it is just the far right, the fringe, talking secession but it can’t be good for the mainstream GOP. It makes independents wary of the party that the people yelling secede support.  It makes rational moderate republicans nervous and creates a breakdown in the party.

And the GOP isn’t innocent in this. They main part of the party may not support the far right’s secession obsession, (sorry I couldn’t resist the rhyme) but they helped create it. You use black people as a boogeyman long enough to manipulate the impressionable and when one gets re-elected if you promise he wouldn’t people will go nuts. The GOP made a certain type of person terrified of Obama. They promised those people he wouldn’t get re-elected. And when he did? Well it’s at least partly the GOP’s fault that those people acted insane and started talking civil war.

I leave you with a link to the audio of Atwater on the GOP’s southern strategy. It’s required listening to understand how while obviously not everyone in the GOP is racist the party leadership has been knowingly using the racists for years. Audio is nsfw and possibly an emotional trigger due to offensive language. 


Obama Should Pardon Edwin Edwards

Obama should pardon Edwin. The man is old.

He is 85 and if he doesn’t get pardoned he may die before he completes his parole and prohibition and is eligible to vote again. Sure there were scandals, but Edwin was the first Louisiana governor post Reconstruction to appoint blacks and women to high positions in his administration. Edwin was involved in creating the new state constitution. Edwin increased state revenue by taxing the powerful oil interests.

Felon disenfranchisement is pretty messed up in general and I think perhaps given the things Edwin did for Louisiana I think it would be worth while for Obama to pardon him and give him the chance to vote again before he dies.

After the election, Obama doesn’t have to run again. The cost of the pardon to him would be minimal. Edwin is popular despite the time in prison.

In fact, I think a pardon could pay off. Edwin is a fundraising powerhouse and making him feel great affection for the democratic party could pay off. People will pay to eat dinner with him and that could result in a lot of cash that the state level party could use to bring us closer to a swing state. 

2012 Presidential Election: Electoral Map

This is the map Maddow started with when she was illustrating on her show how there could be an electoral college tie.

It works from a point of nine swing states.

via 2012 Presidential Election: Electoral Map.

It makes for an interesting game to move around the swing states to see what different things could happen.

Read the rest of this entry »

The President on The Daily Show

Last night, the president appeared on The Daily Show. Could you picture Mitt Romney doing the same? I for one doubt it.

The Obama campaign has a strong lead among young voters and undoubtedly some of this is easily attributed to the standard lead the democratic party has over the GOP among young voters. That alone does not, however, explain the amazing youth turn out Obama generated in 2008. Some of that could undoubtedly be attributed to his soaring rhetoric but that isn’t it alone either.

Just as important as the rhetoric, Obama (and his campaign staff) seems to be in touch with our modern digital world. He seems to be the first president whom young people would expect understands our quickly evolving media world. His campaign has used ever internet platform they could they get their hands on. They seem to really get how memes work and how to generate buzz online.

In fact, for all the talk of lack of specifics of Mitt’s Tax plan, I think this site created as much buzz about it among young voters as any debate comment.

If you want to reach people under about 35, you have to look to unusual communication techniques. That means going on The Daily Show, going somewhere you are aware you will be mocked and asked some uncomfortable questions. No news program gets more attention from young voters than the “fake news show” and Obama and his team know that.

Going on the Daily Show may seem silly or risky to some politicians, but if you want young people to come out and vote for you. If you want to generate real turn out among young people, you have to reach them online and on the shows they watch. Sunday morning interviews are unlikely to help your turnout among young people. Sitting down with Stewart less than a month before the election though? That will probably be a good turn out booster.

What could Obama have done better? Mentioned marriage equality on the Daily Show. It is a key voting issue among young people and would likely have generated some much needed energy for his campaign.

Maybe they should send Biden to Colbert. He is never known to shy away from interesting issues and it would certainly be a lively interview.