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Friday Margaret & Helen Blogging

The intertubes' feistiest 80-somethings weigh in from their undisclosed binder:

Margaret and Helen blog photo
Two broads Mitt ain't foolin'
The Mitt who showed up to the debate this week is the same one who has been showing up in politics for years---the one who will say anything to get elected. Well. I’m done. I’ve seen and heard quite enough and I am voting for President Obama. ...

The Republicans say that Obama can’t run on his record. Really? You want to talk about records? Mitt Romney was born wealthy, married wealthy and will most likely die wealthy. Bully for him. The other guy is [a] black man born in America in 1961 to a single white woman. He went on to become President of the United States. I’d say there’s no contest. Thanks to Republicans, Obama inherited the biggest mess since the great depression and in his first year in office prevented a total economic meltdown.

As for Mitt’s record---he was a bully in high school and got pretty upset when his father wasn’t elected President. At the age of 46 he was bored with making more money so he decided to become a Republican simply to challenge Ted Kennedy for the Senate. By the way, he claimed that he was more Pro-Choice than Teddy. He lost. Then he spent millions of his own fortune to get himself elected Governor of Massachusetts in 2002. Four years later he left with an approval rating so low he ranked 48 out of the 50 Governors. Most of the middle class in Massachusetts got frustrated with his taxes which Mitt called fees---license fees, gun fees, gas fees, college fees… He left with a 38% approval rating. …

I know no one wants to drag up George Bush’s name because what’s done is done. Lord knows I would like to forget him. But I take issue when Mitt and the Republicans try to blame all of Bush’s problems on the black guy who moved into the neighborhood. I say bullshit. Mitt Romney is George Bush all over again---same song, second verse.

Worse: he'll reassemble the same backup band.

Your west coast-friendly edition of  Cheers and Jeers starts below the fold... [Swoosh!!] RIGHTNOW! [Gong!!]

Cheers and Jeers for Friday, October 19, 2012

Note: Vote!


By the Numbers:
Days 'til the general election: 18
Days 'til the 3rd annual Mount Rainier Fall Wine Festival in Ashford, Washington: 15
Percent of Mainers who thought President Obama won Tuesday night's debate: 63%
(Source: Online poll by The Portland Press Herald)
Number of miles the newly-discovered planet Alpha Centauri Bb is from Earth: 25 trillion
Estimated number of years it would take an unmanned probe to reach it: 4,000
(Source: CBS News)
Percent increase in adults planning to host or go to Halloween parties compared to 2006: 36%
(Source: Some web site with too many @!%#!! pop-up ads)
Percent chance that President Obama doesn't need a binder full of women: 100%
(Source: This car)


NEW! Friday Joe Lieberman Wanker Walk Countdown:
Joe Lieberman will end his Senate reign of error in 69 days.

Puppy Pic of the Day  Your choice tonight, depending on your gross-out tolerance: Betty White meets hero dog in a dress…or...the astonishing but stomach-turning hero dog without a snout.  (Warning: If you click on both, I'm calling the proper authorities on you.)


CHEERS to the Commander-in-Timing.  Last night at the white-tie and tidy-whities Alfred E. Smith dinner in New York, Mitt Romney aimed his comedic barbs---some admittedly funny---at President Obama 8 times and turned an otherwise OK routine into an uncomfortable bit of nasty schtick.  President Obama, displaying far more humility, aimed 3 punchlines at Romney (and many more than that at himself), while reminding the muckety mucks in the room that he's the candidate who's getting stuff done:

Obama supporter holding sign
And 100% of our pooties and woozles, too!
"Of course, the economy is on everybody’s minds.  The unemployment rate is at its lowest level since I took office.  I don’t have a joke here, I just thought it would be useful to remind everybody that the unemployment rate is at the lowest it’s been since I took office.  (Laughter and applause.)  […]  Monday’s debate is a little bit different because the topic is foreign policy.  Spoiler Alert: We got bin Laden. (Laughter and applause.)
So the score now stands at 1 debate win for Team Red and 2 debate wins plus 1 dinner speech win for Team Blue.  And more goodness: Obama had his best fundraising day Wednesday after cooking Romney's goose (in sauce with the gander) the night before, and Nate Silver's latest forecast gives the president a 70 percent chance of winning on November 6 with 291 electoral votes.  But Republicans have reason to be happy, too.  They finally found the Ring-Dings we left 'em Tuesday night when they swapped places with us on the window ledge.

JEERS to the ugly underbelly of Fortress Romney.  Ruh roh!  Guess who's tripping up Mitt Romney just as he's plunging headlong toward the goalposts?  His pesky in-laws!  This sounds mighty ugly, but also completely unsurprising:

Ad for snake oil
"My brother-in-law Mitt
says it's a WINNER!!!"
Ann Romney's brother Roderick Davies, who filed for bankruptcy in 2010, and nephew Ryan Davies, who oversaw a now-bankrupt green energy venture, have both been out on the campaign trail to offer support for Romney. But back in Utah, the two men have left a trail of unhappy business partners, a number of whom spoke with ABC News to express concern about how the two might try and capitalize on a Romney presidency.

Andy Neff, a Florida financial advisor who says he lost a top client and his own savings investing in Ryan Davies's ill-fated solar energy venture, said Davies repeatedly assured him that his famous uncle Mitt was mentoring him, right up until his company filed for bankruptcy.  "To be quite honest with you," Neff said, "if you're running for President of the United States, you should probably make sure all your family's doing the right, ethical things with people, and not taking
advantage of hardworking guys like me and taking my money."

The Romney camp issued a brief statement in response to the news that sleaze-baggery appears to be part of their family code: "LOOK OVER THERE!!!  OBAMA BAD SOCIALIST SOLYNDRA SHINY OBJECT!!!"  These days it's all they got.

CHEERS to wars worth fighting.  On October 19, 1781, British General Lord Cornwallis (or, rather, a representative of his---Benny Hill, I believe) surrendered to Washington's Continental Army outside of Yorktown, effectively ending our War of Independence.  The surrender agreement contained the first recorded use of the phrase "Your mother was a hamster and your father smelt of elderberries!!!"  (Full disclosure: Lafayette's idea.)

CHEERS to takin' your Flintstones chewables.  Wow---I've choked down a vitamin every day for decades but I mostly thought I was just pissing it away.  Turns out I may be on my way to living forever:

Vitamin pills
"Pills---It's what's for dinner."
Half [of the 15,000 male physicians over 50] took the daily multivitamin Centrum Silver; the others took a placebo.  Men in the vitamin group had a modest 8% reduction in cancer cases compared to the others. […]

"Overall the study provides the first very nice piece of evidence that well-balanced – not overdose, not mega dose – combination of vitamins and minerals seems to have an effect at preventing cancer," said Dr. Boris Pasche, director of the Division of Hematology/Oncology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. "But more research is needed to validate this."

The study is published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.  Meanwhile I recently made a dramatic health discovery of my own: eating more candy corn is an excellent way to overcome a candy corn deficiency.  [Scribble Scribble Scribble]  As of a few seconds ago my study is conveniently published on my cocktail napkin.

P.S. Tough case of Romnesia?  Ask your president if Obamacare is right for you!

JEERS to the Big Dump.  On October 19, 1987---on Saint Ronald Reagan's watch---stocks plunged 508 points amid panicky selling.  They called it "Black Monday." The lowlights as they unfolded:

Stock market plunge graph from October 19, 1987
The plunge of Oct. 19, 1987 was
caused by a Reagan sneeze.
10:30 AM With 140 million shares traded, the Dow is down 101 points, to 2145.

11:45 AM A brief turnaround gives traders a flicker of hope as the Dow regains 95 points in a half-hour.

1 PM As rumors spread about a NYSE shutdown, the Dow plunges 100 points in the next hour.

2:15 PM With the Dow down 300 points, an investor outside the NYSE screams, "Down with Reagan! Down with MBAs! Down with yuppies!"

4 PM The NYSE closes. Chairman John Phelan says it was the closest thing to a "financial meltdown" that he had ever seen.

The percentage decline (22.6%) was actually worse than the crash of 1929.  Thank god we learned our lesson and, through sensible legislation, never had to experience anything like that again.  Attaboy, Congress!

CHEERS to home vegetation.  BIG excitement on TV tonight!  Two Mainer cousins, Jim Tselekis and Sabin Lomac, will pitch their lobster company in front of the moneybags panel on the ABC reality show Shark Tank, and we hope they can "claw" their way to a big pile of investment cash.  Elsewhere on the tube, Bill Maher talks with Rolling Stone's Matt Taibbi, conservative liar (sorry for the redundancy) John Fund, MSNBC's Goldie Taylor, Label It Now author Gary Hirshberg and former McCain-Palin staffer Boris Epshtyne on Real Time.  New DVD releases include Moonrise Kingdom and Madagascar 3.  The NL Championship continues (Congrats on the four-game AL sweep, Detroit) tonight with St. Louis vs. San Francisco.  The NFL schedule is here. (The Patriots will "ground" the Jets---Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha!!!)  Bruno Mars hosts SNL.  On 60 Minutes: Steven Spielberg talks about his upcoming biopic on Lincoln.  And Sunday night on Comedy Central's Jon Stewart-hosted Night of Too Many Stars (to benefit autism programs), you can watch Chris Matthews debate Bill O'Reilly while they're inhaling helium.  But tune in and watch, anyway.

A tweet from Up! With Chris Hayes explains why you should tune in tomorrow morning: "To everyone tweeting me about #sensata: we're going to be covering it [this] weekend, when we have a former worker from the company booked."  That'll be interesting.   And here's your Sunday morning lineup, now with C&J's EXCLUSIVE Zombie Index:

The Meet the Press roundtable is
called in from the Green Room.
Face the Nation: Creamy McDreamy Senator Marco Rubio (R-Tiger Beat); Obama deputy campaign manager Stephanie Cutter and Romney flack Kevin Madden; roundtable with Peggy Noonan, David Sanger (NYT), Joe Klein and CBS News' John Dickerson.  Zombie Index: "Mmmm...Marco Brains!"

Meet the Press: Smoothie McSwooney Senator Marco Rubio (R-Teen Idols Digest); David Axelrod and Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) talk politics; roundtable with Helene Cooper, Mike Murphy, Dee Dee Myers and Tom Friedman.
Zombie Index: "Mmmm...'Mustache of Understanding' Brains!"

This Week: Hunky McHeartthrob Senator Marco Rubio (R-Teen Vogue); Rahm Emanuel; roundtable with Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Matt Dowd, Van Jones, Greta Van Susteren and Ralph Reed.  Zombie Index: "Mmmm...Christian Hypocrite Brains!"

Bill Moyers & Company (link): Matt Taibbi and Chrystia Freeland on the mega wealthy's influence on the elections.  Zombie Index: "Mmmm...Taibbi Brains!"

Washington Week: Peter Baker (NYT), Amy Walter (ABC), John Dickerson (Slate) and Charles Babington (AP).  Zombie Index: "Mmmm...Smart People Brains!"

Fox GOP Talking Points Sunday: Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Lindsay Graham (R-SC); Gallup bigwig Frank Newport; roundtable with Brit Hume, Liz Marlantes, Bill Kristol and Juan Williams.  Zombie Index: "Blechhh...Shit for Brains!"

Happy Noshing!


Five years ago in C&J: October 19, 2007

JEERS to "free-market conservatives."  Letter writer Chris Horton of Portland, Maine makes an excellent point in this letter to the Portland Press Herald:

Apparently, some Blackwater employees deployed in Iraq earn a higher salary than Gen. David Petraeus.  I am confused.  Free-market conservatives have been claiming for years that privatizing government jobs will create more efficiency and thus major savings for U.S. taxpayers.  Can one of your conservative readers explain why the "invisible hand" of the free market has failed so disastrously now that we are privatizing the war in Iraq?
Wow, it's so unusual to hear crickets around here this time of year.


And just one more…

CHEERS to battling to a backbeat.  I'm going to go out on a limb here and guess that most of us are in a pretty good mood as we end the week, in a big part thanks to the way President Obama stood up to the bully and cleaned his clock fair and square Tuesday.  (It helped that Romney showed up with banana peels strapped to the soles of his shoes, or so it seemed.)  So here with a recap of what George Will called "immeasurably the best debate" in 50 years, is the Songified version of it.  Enjoy...

Have a super weekend!  Floor's open...What are you cheering and jeering about today?



Who won the week?

1%68 votes
9%539 votes
9%575 votes
0%41 votes
47%2775 votes
0%49 votes
3%185 votes
1%99 votes
3%233 votes
3%214 votes
1%78 votes
6%407 votes
0%48 votes
9%562 votes

| 5884 votes | Vote | Results

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