Unless somebody is actually paying me, I don’t watch televised debates. I visit the candidates’ websites, compare how they stand on the issues, decide on my own, and spare myself the aggravation of wasting hours of my life watching televised debates.

Yes, you can take for granted that the so-called moderators, products of liberal schools of journalism-in-name-only, will favor the Dems. The cable and TV networks are not as bare-faced as Univision’s activists, but sometimes they come close.

And don’t get me started on the unasked questions, especially the unasked question so far,

“You say you are ‘personally opposed’ to abortion, can you explain your reason for personally oppose abortion?”

So last night I watched instead Luke Cage, starring the fine-looking, fine-sounding Mike Colter. I knew nothing about the series, but it looked interesting when it came up on Netflix, so I watched.

Reading about the debate this morning, I’m glad I did, considering that Tim Kaine reportedly interrupted Mike Pence over seventy times. The video posted with that article shows Kaine, lifted eyebrow, finger pointed, yammering on about whatever came to mind, which may or may not be related to what Pence was saying, with little, if any interaction from the moderator.

If this sounds like an exaggeration, look at a brief section of the transcript, where Hillary’s servers, the Clinton Foundation, The Apprentice, Osama Bin Laden, Iran and Iraq swirled around in an alphabet soup,

PENCE: But there’s a — there’s a reason why people question the trustworthiness of Hillary Clinton. And that’s because they’re paying attention. I mean, the reality is, when she was secretary of state, Senator, come on. She had a Clinton Foundation accepting contributions from foreign governments.

KAINE: You are Donald Trump’s apprentice. Let me talk about this…

(CROSSTALK)

PENCE: Senator, I think I’m still on my time.

KAINE: Well, I think — isn’t this a discussion?

QUIJANO: This is our open discussion.

KAINE: Yeah, let’s talk about the state of…

(CROSSTALK)

PENCE: Well, let me interrupt — let me interrupt you and finish my sentence, if I can.

KAINE: Finish your sentence.

PENCE: The Clinton Foundation accepted foreign contributions from foreign governments and foreign donors while she was secretary of state.

KAINE: OK, now I can weigh in. Now…

PENCE: She had a private server…

KAINE: Now, I get to weigh in. Now, let me just say this…

PENCE: … that was discovered…

(CROSSTALK)

QUIJANO: … Senator, you have an opportunity to respond.

PENCE: … keep that pay to play process out of the reach of the public.

KAINE: Governor Pence — Governor Pence doesn’t think the world’s going so well and he, you know, is going to say it’s everybody’s fault.

PENCE: Do you?

KAINE: Let me tell you this. When Hillary Clinton became secretary of state, Governor Pence, did you know that Osama bin Laden was alive?

PENCE: Yes.

KAINE: Do you know that we had 175,000 troops deployed in the battlefield in Iraq and Afghanistan? Do you know that Iran was racing toward a nuclear weapon and Russia was expanding its stockpile?

Under Secretary Clinton’s leadership, she was part of the national team, public safety team that went after and revived the dormant hunt against bin Laden and wiped him off the face of the Earth. She worked to deal with the Russians to reduce their chemical weapons stockpile. She worked a tough negotiation with nations around the world to eliminate the Iranian nuclear weapons program without firing a shot.

PENCE: Eliminate the Iranian nuclear weapons program?

KAINE: Absolutely, without firing a shot. And instead of 175,000 American troops deployed overseas, we now have 15,000.

PENCE: Right and…

KAINE: These are very, very good things.

PENCE: And Iraq has been overrun by ISIS, because Hillary Clinton failed to renegotiate…

KAINE: Well, if you want to put more American troops in Iraq, you can propose that.

PENCE: Hillary Clinton — Hillary Clinton — Hillary Clinton failed to renegotiate a status of forces agreement…

KAINE: No, that is incorrect. That’s incorrect.

PENCE: And so we removed — we removed all of our…

QUIJANO: Gentlemen, we’ll get to…

(CROSSTALK)

PENCE: … troops from Iraq, and ISIS was able to be conjured up in that vacuum.

KAINE: But I’d like to correct…

PENCE: … and overrun vast areas of Iraq.

Where was the moderator? Who knows? Fifty more minutes of that followed.

So you can understand why I prefer to watch the more handsome and entertaining Mr. Colter, whose character is named after Luke 4:18. Here’s the Gospel text in context,

14 Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and news about him spread through the whole countryside. 15 He was teaching in their synagogues, and everyone praised him.16 He went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue, as was his custom. He stood up to read, 17 and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written:

18 “The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
because he has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
and recovery of sight for the blind,
to set the oppressed free,
19 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”[f]

The greater lesson, for both Luke Cage and for debate viewers alike, remains, from Psalm 146:3-5 (emphasis added),

3 Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help.

4 His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish.

5 Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the Lord his God:

No televised debate will change that.

Fausta Rodriguez Wertz writes on U.S. and Latin American politics, news, and culture at Fausta’s Blog.

We have repeatedly heard from professed Catholic pols like Tim Kaine that they are “personally opposed” to abortion yet vote for it on a regular basis.

There is an obvious question that this brings up that I really haven’t heard anyone ask people like Kaine and as I, due to my job, could not see or hear the entire debate, figured I’d ask it here.

“You say you are ‘personally opposed’ to abortion, can you explain your reason for personally opposing abortion?”

The answer to this question should be telling, particularly if the objection is a moral one, because if the objection is a moral one, why is that moral issue not important enough for one to oppose it politically.

Senator Joseph Paine: I know how you feel, Jeff. Thirty years ago – I had those ideals, too. I was *you*. I had to make the decision you were asked to make today. And I compromised – yes! So that all these years I could stay in that Senate – and serve the people in a thousand honest ways! You’ve got to face facts, Jeff. I’ve served our state well, haven’t I? We have the lowest unemployment and the highest federal grants. But, well, I’ve had to compromise, had to play ball. You can’t count on people voting, half the time they don’t vote, anyway. That’s how states and empires have been built since time began. Don’t you understand? Well, Jeff, you can take my word for it, that’s how things are. Now I’ve told you all this because – well, I’ve grown very fond of you – about like a son – in fact, and I don’t want to see you get hurt. Now, when that deficiency bill comes up in the Senate tomorrow, you stay away from it. Don’t say a word. Great powers are behind it, and they’ll destroy you before you can even get started. For your own sake, Jeff, and for the sake of my friendship with your father, please, don’t say a word.

Mr. Smith Goes to Washington 1939

 

If you want to really understand the mindset of the “Personally Opposed” argument on abortion let me illustrate this with a reading from the Holy Gospel according to Matthew augmented by the Holy Gospel according to Sen Tim Kaine. (The Gospel of Kaine being unitalicized and indented).

Now on the occasion of the feast the governor was accustomed to release to the crowd one prisoner whom they wished. And at that time they had a notorious prisoner called (Jesus) Barabbas. So when they had assembled, Pilate said to them, “Which one do you want me to release to you, (Jesus) Barabbas, or Jesus called Messiah?” For he knew that it was out of envy that they had handed him over. While he was still seated on the bench, his wife sent him a message, “Have nothing to do with that righteous man. I suffered much in a dream today because of him.” The chief priests and the elders persuaded the crowds to ask for Barabbas but to destroy Jesus.

Matt 27:15-20

And Lo in the crowd stood Tim, who had heard the words of Christ over the last three years.  And he turned and spoke to the guy standing next to him in the crowd and said:

“You know I’ve heard and seen Jesus.  He’s done wonderful things and teaches as no other does. He’s certainly not guilty like that horrible Barabbas”

The governor said to them in reply, “Which of the two do you want me to release to you?” They answered, “Barabbas!”

Matt 27:21

And Lo Tim who had seen Christ called for Barabbas even louder than the rest.  And the guy standing next to him seemed confused and was about to ask him about it when Tim continued: “In fact I think Jesus is the messiah for he has  done miracles from God that no one else could have.”

Pilate said to them, “Then what shall I do with Jesus called Messiah?” They all said, “Let him be crucified!”

Matt 27:22

And Lo again Tim did scream “Let him be Crucified” even louder than the rest.  And again the man next to him seemed confused and prepared to ask Tim about them but before he could say a word Tim spoke:  “Yes sir Jesus of Nazareth is the son of God all right!”

But he said, “Why? What evil has he done?” They only shouted the louder, “Let him be crucified!”

Matt 27:23

And again Tim shouted it louder than the rest and he turned to speak to the fellow next to him but he, not able to stand it any longer, turned to Tim and spake:  “Tim I don’t understand it? You say that Jesus is the messiah, the son of God, you say nobody could do the things he has done yet you are publicly crying for him to be crucified?  Why?”

When Pilate saw that he was not succeeding at all, but that a riot was breaking out instead, he took water and washed his hands in the sight of the crowd, saying, “I am innocent of this man’s blood. Look to it yourselves.”

Matt 27:24

And then Tim turned to his friend and said:  “Well you must understand while I’m publicly committed to supporting the chief priests in the condemnation and  crucifixion of Jesus Christ I think it’s a bad idea and am personally opposed to it.”

And the whole people said in reply, “His blood be upon us and upon our children.”

Matt 27:25

and then after Tim joined in this cry his friend looked at him incredulously and spake: “Well that makes all the difference doesn’t it?”

Then he released Barabbas to them, but after he had Jesus scourged,  he handed him over to be crucified.

Matt 27:26

here endith the lesson.


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There has been a bit of a buzz concerning Hillary Clinton appropriating the words of Ted Cruz’s speech at the RNC convention.

I think those words of Hillary’s are interesting: “Ted Cruz was right. In this election do the right thing vote your conscience”

Well progressives you heard her.

If your progressive conscience objects to people swimming in special interest money, Listen to Hillary. Do the right thing, vote your conscience, vote for Dr. Jill Stein

If your progressive conscience objects to candidates who not only take huge money to speak before organizations like Goldman Sacks but won’t release the transcripts of those speeches Listen to Hillary Do the right thing, vote your conscience, vote for Dr. Jill Stein.

If your progressive conscience objects to candidates who voted for and supported the Iraq War, Listen to Hillary Do the right thing, vote your conscience, vote for Dr. Jill Stein.

If your progressive conscience objects to candidates and their allies who conspires to smear progressive like Bernie Sanders and manipulate votes in states like Iowa for their advantage. Listen to Hillary Do the right thing, vote your conscience, vote for Dr. Jill Stein.

If your progressive conscience objects to a candidate who was, at best careless with classified information Listen to Hillary Do the right thing, vote your conscience, vote for Dr. Jill Stein.

If your progressive conscience objects to candidates who given the chance to choose a progressive diverse candidate as a running mate selects a while male insider who calls himself pro-life Listen to Hillary Do the right thing, vote your conscience, vote for Dr. Jill Stein.

If your progressive conscience objects says that as a person who worked so hard for Bernie and the progressive ideal that you simply can see yourself voting for Hillary, Listen to Hillary Do the right thing, vote your conscience, vote for Dr. Jill Stein.

Well personally I think if Hillary Clinton is so insistent that progressives vote their conscience who am I to say otherwise?

I can’t imagine how Bernie Sanders voters feel today.

If you were a Bernie bro the home stretch of this season had promise.  Your man was still fighting even after Donald Trump had clinched and unlike Trump, Hillary had not managed to secure enough bound delegates to win the nomination meaning that the superdelegate who by the rules were completely free regardless of past pronouncements or media statements to vote for whatever nominee they wanted.

Furthermore with the FBI investigation still having over her and polls consistently  showing Bernie beating Trump, there was always the chance that the tide at the convention would turn.

There was HOPE!

And more important than hope, as long as Sanders did not concede they had leverage.

As long as the threat of a move to Bernie at the convention existed, Hillary Clinton was forced to entertain progressive choices for VP, to give lip service to your issues.  To very publically be a sister to the left.

That leverage ended the moment Sanders left the race and endorsed and the ultimate express of that loss of leverage is the pick of Tim Kaine.

Once Bernie was out the fix was in (and not just in terms of VP with no alternative Democrat as a threat suddenly Bill Clinton was meeting with Lynch, the FBI was crying “careless” but unwilling to enforce the law and suddenly Justice was uninterested.) and you progressives could be tossed under the Clinton bus, and ironically thanks to the Wikileaks disclosures you know that has been the desire from day one.

In one message dated May 5, 2016, with the subject line “No s–t,” the chief financial officer of the Democratic National Committee, Brad Marshall, plotted how to portray Sanders, who was raised Jewish in Brooklyn, as an atheist.

“It might [make] no difference, but for KY and WVA can we get someone to ask his belief,” Marshall wrote, apparently referring to Sanders and upcoming Kentucky and West Virginia primaries.

“Does he believe in a God. He had skated on saying he has a Jewish heritage,’’ Marshall asked.

“I think I read he is an atheist.”

“This could make several points difference with my peeps. My Southern Baptist peeps would draw a big difference between a Jew and atheist.”

The chief executive officer at the DNC, Amy Dacey, responded with a single word: “Amen.”

Or to put it another way, Putting aside my own feelings as a Conservative Catholic or opinions on Hillary’s options, do you really believe, dear Bernie fans, that a “pro-life” senator and governor with a religious background and an affinity for the trade deals you despise, a former DNC chair, the ultimate insider, a straight white male, would be the Democrat choice for VS if they actually cared what you think?

You may have have “felt the burn” before but now you really know what it is to be burned

Well there’s always Dr. Jill Stein & the Green Party.

Exit question for Bernie fans:  Given these facts how jealous are you of the Never Trump folks.  They at least had a champion who was willing to go before the convention and at great risk to his political future not endorse.  Who will be your champion at the Democrat Convention?

Update: added DNC quote


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Looking at the Morning Joe crew without Joe talking about Rand Paul with nothing remotely resembling a counter balance today is very instructive.

This crowd is practically giddy going over the Rand Paul stuff and the Wall street bill. There is not even a pretense of pretending to show the other side of the argument.

When they had on democratic chairman Tim Kaine talking about the subject they were like a bunch of guys at a bachelor party drooling around a pole dancer.

It was enough to get me to change the channel today.

Update: It was apparently so bad that they had to call up Joe Scarborough to provide balance. Joe designs it cleared up but rightly states that he (Paul) did this to himself. It is rather amazing the rest of the panel is questioning Joe in the same way that they would with a “guest”. They are really pressing him.