Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘Kucinich

That Wacky Kucinich

leave a comment »

”Wacky”, like its close cousin “crazy,” is a term of derision exclusively reserved for those who deviate from such conventions. And that’s the point worth making here: the real reason anyone with D.C. Seriousness, including many establishment liberals, relished mocking Kucinich is because he dissented from the orthodoxies of the two political parties. That, by definition, makes one wacky and weird, even when — as is true for the Obama assassination powers and so many other bipartisan pieties — the actual wacky and crazy beliefs are those orthodoxies themselves (we’ve seen this repeatedly with those who stray from two-party normalcy). In reality, the actual crazies are those who fit comfortably within that two-party mentality and rarely challenge or deviate from it, while those who are sane, by definition, dissent from it (just today, Democratic Sen. Carl Levin, a prime co-sponsor of the indefinite detention bill passed late last year, called for a naval blockade of Iran).

Glenn Greenwald on the wackiness of Dennis Kucinich. This is a good piece, but I think Glenn overlooks here the extent to which Kucinich (like Ron Paul, whom Glenn also gives too much credit) was an unusually terrible spokesman for heterodoxy even by the standards of a mass media environment that seeks to destroy iconoclastic thinkers. You can distill Kucinich’s greatest hits into a single list in this way and he doesn’t sound that bad—but there are reasons no one took him seriously that go well beyond the fact he was saying things they didn’t want to hear.

Written by gerrycanavan

March 10, 2012 at 8:56 am

Monday Afternoon Links

leave a comment »

* The no-fly zone in Libya seems to have reminded people that we’re always currently bombing Yemen too. Nick Baumann at Mother Jones has your primer.

* Kucinich watch: Obama’s Libya Attack An Impeachable Offense.

* Republicans could actually be right: Obama might be watching too much college basketball.

The President went 5-3 again on Sunday (missing on VCU, Marquette and Florida State). He has 10 of his Sweet 16 teams alive, six of his Elite Eight (no Pitt or Purdue), three of his Final Four left (Kansas, Duke, Ohio State), and both of his title-game participants (Kansas, Ohio State).

He’s in the 99.9th percentile of the game and his 490 points rank him 7,549th overall

Thanks Tim for the link.

* George Monbiot argues that Fukushima proves the case for nuclear energy. More here. I remain unpersuaded.

* The models say 2012 will be close. I’m unpersuaded about this, too. Via Ezra Klein.

* And Sepinwall more or less nails my take on the Big Love finale:

Bill Henrickson had been shown pretty clearly over five seasons of “Big Love” to be an utter cancer to his family: myopic and petulant and manipulative and self-righteous and constantly causing pain, large and small, to the three women who had chosen to be his wives. Bill’s destructive effect on his loved ones was clear to me as a viewer of the show for a very long time, and it was clear to many other viewers of the series. I’m just not sure if that was ever what creators Mark V. Olsen and Will Scheffer intended us to think of Bill, and the finale left things very muddled in that regard.

…If you went into the finale with more affection for Bill, and/or the series, perhaps you were more touched by it all. (Though before Bill’s grandstanding at the state Senate meeting, it was a fairly listless hour.) But ultimately, the show I wanted “Big Love” to be apparently wasn’t the show Olsen and Scheffer were making. I can see that quite vividly now.

Spoilers, obviously—and more reactions here.

And Some Links for Thursday

leave a comment »

* The list of lists for 2010 is ready. You have two days left to mourn. Enjoy.

Fantastic piece on Obama via @zunguzunguI expected Obama to be a better loser, specifically to be better at losing. There were a lot of items on the table, a lot of them weren’t going to happen, but it was important for the new future of liberalism that the Obama team lost them well. And that hasn’t happened.

By losing well, I mean losing in a way that builds a coalition, demonstrates to your allies that you are serious, takes a pound of flesh from your opponents and leaves them with the blame, and convinces those on the fence that it is an important issue for which you have the answers. Lose for the long run; lose in a way that leaves liberal institutions and infrastructure stronger, able to be deployed again at a later date.

* At least court-watchers are scoring the Sotomayor pick as a long-term progressive win. Via Benen.

* Weird science: third triplet born twelve years after her sisters.

* Weird clemency: Barbour’s order stands on the condition that Gladys donates one of her kidneys to her ailing sister, “a procedure which should be scheduled with urgency.” I feel like this story pretty clearly demonstrates how useless decades-long incarceration is in most cases, as well as the basic arbitrariness of the criminal justice system.

* Alas, Cleveland: Dennis Kucinich may lose his district.

* Alas, Paul Simon: Kodachrome finally taken away.

* What has been seen can never be unseen: Muppets with People Eyes.

* In important telling-you-what-was-already-pretty-obvious news, Tim Minear says the third season of Dollhouse would essentially have been another season of Buffy.

* And of course you had me at original He-Man storyboards.

Select Links While I’m Away (Part 1)

leave a comment »

But Before That

leave a comment »

* Dennis Kucinich is said to be switching his vote on health care to “yes,” possibly in exchange for an ERISA waiver that would remove a major roadblock to state-based single-payer.

* Help wanted: astronaut. (via)

* Muppet Madness. Just one of the many alternative brackets to be found here.

* U.S. exceptionalism watch: As a society gets richer, its tax rates tend to rise. But in the U.S. demand for governmental spending grows and grows, while tax rates drop…

Written by gerrycanavan

March 16, 2010 at 11:07 pm


with 2 comments

Written by gerrycanavan

March 14, 2010 at 12:10 am

Kucinich Mania

with 2 comments

Dennis Kucinich really needs to read my blogHealth care reform is a major progressive victory. There’s never a final end to struggle; we take what’s here and start again.

Written by gerrycanavan

March 9, 2010 at 9:58 am

A Global Map of Human Impacts to Marine Ecosystems

leave a comment »

A global map of human impacts to marine ecosystems, via Science, via MeFi. The impacts page is even more stark than the main one; check out, for instance, the maps for ocean acidification (right), ocean-based pollution, and climate change.

NBC News devoted a few (two) minutes to this study recently. “If we change our ways,” the report says, “the oceans can recover.”

Glad that’s taken care of.

This continued Pollyannaism towards environmental issues drives me nuts. If we change our ways—but we won’t, not least of all because of the poisonous indifference of big media outlets like NBC News itself—the oceans can recovercan with a heaping spoonful of might and eventually in time, and recover always carefully underwritten with to some degree. Still, at least two minutes is time spent, some token acknowledgment of the problem; it’s better than CNN’s incredibly sorry record in the 2008 presidential primary debates, where in five coal-industry-sponsored debates not a single question was asked about environmental issues.

In fairness, CNN did once allow Dennis Kucinich to speak to a snowman for a minute and a half, so I guess we’re even.

Written by gerrycanavan

February 15, 2008 at 8:02 am

Friday Night Politics Links: Kos, Endorsements, Fraud

leave a comment »

* This whole “Democrats for Mitt” idea is probably kos’s single stupidest self-inflicted wound since the whole mercenaries debacle. Given that his plan won’t work, it’s irrelevant—and even if it somehow does work, how does this idiotic game benefit any Democrat anywhere? That’s assuming it doesn’t completely blow up in the Left’s face by accidentally propelling Guy Smiley to the White House. In any event, this sort of nonsense invites, legitimately I think, cries of “dirty tricks” from the right, which is something we have no reason to invite. Kos should either promote the “Vote Uncommitted” movement on the grounds that Clinton should not be rewarded by her failure to remove her name from the Michigan ballot, or else do nothing at all.

* Arizona governor Janet Napolitano has endorsed Obama, a significant endorsement not only regionally but also because of the way it plays into the gender dynamics that are now characterizing the Democratic race.

Meanwhile, bestsellers Anne Rice and Michael Chabon have each chosen a favorite, Clinton and Obama respectively. Call me when Lethem weighs in.

* And of course there’s Kucinich’s decision to pursue a recount in New Hampshire. For what it’s worth, as someone who believes that both the 2000 and 2004 elections were influenced and perhaps stolen outright through manipulation of the apparatus of voting—cleansing of the voter rolls, selective closing of precincts, suspicious last-minute swings always redounding to Republican benefit, see RFK Jr. for more—I can perhaps regain some of my “sensible centrist” cred by saying I’m not at all impressed by the claims New Hampshire was stolen. For one, the exit polls I saw bandied about before the results began being reported already indicated that a blowout was not in progress; obviously the telephone polling missed a late surge in Clinton support probably generated in equal parts by sympathy for the beating she was getting in the press and by a belief that Obama couldn’t lose. Likewise, the difference in results between hand-counted precincts and machine-counted precincts, despite the many shouts of Diebold!, is almost certainly a function of the demographics of those areas, not prima facie proof of malfeasance. In short, there’s almost no comparison to 2004, where the exit polls were consistently wrong well outside the margin of error, and the irregularities were both more local and more pronounced.

The assertion of fraud whenever the results don’t go our way only serves to discredit valid claims about electoral fraud and suspicious results.

Still, if I’m wrong and it turns out Kucinich is somehow onto something, I’ll be the first one to admit it.

Written by gerrycanavan

January 11, 2008 at 10:47 pm

Kucinich has instructed his supporters to vote for Obama on the second ballota

leave a comment »

More cautious optimism for Obama supports: Dennis Kucinich has instructed his supporters to vote for Obama on the second ballot—though in fairness it must be noted that Kucinich’s support in Iowa is significantly shallower than it was in 2004, when he struck a similar deal with John Edwards.

The real question is this: what will Biden, Dodd, and Richardson do?

Written by gerrycanavan

January 1, 2008 at 11:14 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Tagged with , , ,

Dennis Kucinich, King of Spin

leave a comment »

Dennis Kucinich, king of spin: how Dennis Kucinich remade himself from race-baiting bomb-thrower to liberal sweetheart. As a pro-Obama-or-Edwards progressive and former resident of Cleveland, I found this article really interesting, though it’s quite a smearjob and I’m sure I’d be pretty unhappy about it if it had been launched against one of my preferred candidates.

“If you are mayor, you have to do things,” says Mike Roberts, The Plain Dealer’s former city editor. “There was nothing that he did of any success, unless it was self-serving.”

City dwellers who could afford to flee did so in droves. Everyone else was holding on for dear life. “The town had a nervous breakdown during [Kucinich’s] mayoralty,” Larkin says. “He wore everybody out.”

Yet almost 30 years later, Kucinich has managed to recast this period as his greatest triumph. In the revised telling, this isn’t a story of a mayor who hurled the city into chaos with startling swiftness. It’s a rewritten David and Goliath tale, with Kucinich playing the role as the only man with the cojones to stand up to corruption and nefarious corporations. His presidential campaign paints a man of sturdy principles, unsinkable optimism, and untainted liberal bona fides — a mythology now being regurgitated by everyone from supporters to the national media.

Written by gerrycanavan

December 22, 2007 at 2:14 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Tagged with , ,

Planet Kucinich

leave a comment »

Dennis Kucinich has seen a UFO, says TPM by way of Shirley McClaine. Via MetaFilter, which also has the Robbers Cave psychological experiment and the worst mayor in America.

Written by gerrycanavan

October 24, 2007 at 12:23 am

Posted in Uncategorized

Tagged with , , , ,

leave a comment »

This script will pick your 2008 candidate for you, but if you’re like the 99% of the people who read this blog who aren’t obligatory derogatory noun Republicans, you’re likely to be as disappointed as I was when it tells you to vote for Kucinich. Via MeFi, where everyone is being told to vote for Kucinich, too.

Written by gerrycanavan

August 9, 2007 at 2:23 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Tagged with , , ,