An Imperial Proclamation

WHEREAS Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II has been a Loyal and True Ally of Our Realm, and clings to her Throne with the tenacity of a Bull-dog worrying a Soup-Bone;

AND WHEREAS She has consented to send her Grand-son into harm’s way in the Service of her Realm, unlike Some Executives We could Name;

AND WHEREAS he has overcome the Prejudice normally accorded a Ginger Bastard in his Service and the Acclaim Accorded him by his Fellows;

AND WHEREAS a certain Online Personage has brought about the DIsclosure of this Fact, thus bringing Peril upon said Grand-son and his Fellows;

NOW THEREFORE be it order by Emperor Morton I, Emperor of the United States, Protector of Mexico, and King-in-Exile of the Four Provinces, that Our Imperial Subject styling himself “Matt Drudge” is hereby proclaimed to be an Ass-Canchre and a Blight on the Realm;

AND FURTHERMORE he is to be marked as a Four-Flusher, a Bounder and a Cad, as well as a Foppish Dandy worthy of the Harsh Regard of the Local Constabulary;

AND FURTHERMORE than No Aid nor Comfort nor other Imperial Protection shall devolve upon his Person, and that in the Eventuality that Her Majesty’s Secret Service may chuse to attempt his Termination, that no Impediment shall be Given their Course, provided that said Agents do not attempt any Conviviality with the Women of Our Realm, as their Propensity for Wanton Shaggery is well-known in the Councils of the Nations, and We do not wish to see our Realm littered with the Bastard Offspring of a Thousand Loveless Couplings.

SO BE IT ORDERED by My hand from Our Palace in the Ploughboy Mansion, in the Duchy of California, this day the 28th of February, being the Second Year of Our Imperial Reign.


Let me tell you what…

…if my life depended on somebody scoring a goal off a free kick, I would want Shunsuke Nakamura taking that kick. Seeing him line up off the ball in a tie game with 5 minutes left is like watching Mariano Rivera come into the game in the late 90s – game over, get your keys, good night and drive home safely.

Between Celtic, Vanderbilt and the crazy last-minute heroics of the Golden State Warriors, I’m experiencing a strange phenomenon with my sports lately: the absence of learned hopelessness. Now that’s fun. Don’t think for a minute I’m not gonna milk this UT win for a while…although seriously, it’s not that much of an upset. How many times in recent years does a team reach #1 and lose their very next game? And hadn’t the last three #1s to enter Memorial Gym come out with a loss? Well now it’s four. I’m ordering the T-shirt and the DVD as soon as they’re advertised, don’t think I’m not.

The funniest thing was that I started off on Maker’s Mark and we ran out to a 14 point lead. I switched to Guinness…and we lost our lead. So I naturally had only one option. What am I supposed to do? I’m Scotch-Irish from Alabama, of course I’m superstitious. And I did my duty…my tasty nummy Kentucky-aged bottled-in-bond duty. Probably a little much for a school night, but as always…totally worth it.

One more LOL-odore… =)


And they’re back.

And not a minute too soon.

“Bitch is the new black.” If my wife is ever killed in a tragic blimp accident or otherwise conspires to leave me, I will allow Tina Fey to comfort me in my time of distress. I’m just sayin’,

(She has similar plans to stalk Jimmy Fallon, so don’t hate, y’all ;] )

Lock and load…

Nader to Discuss Election Plans:

If Ralph Nader runs for President again, he should be beaten within an inch of his life. And anyone who votes for him in 2008 should be shot dead outright. Politics ain’t therapy, morons.

ETA: Well, he did it. Doug Feith and Mark Penn are off the hook. Meanwhile, we have another fossil in the race who doesn’t realize the 70s are over. The question now is – will we be compelled to treat him any more seriously than we would the candidate of, say, the Natural Law Party? Or Harold Stassen or Pat Paulsen back in the day?

If you want to send a message, buy a !!-ing Hallmark card. If you’re not in it to win, get out of the race.

How We Got Here

Gather round, kids, and listen to Unca Donkey. Once upon a time, political conventions weren’t soporific four-day wastes of time that made you want to stick a fork in your cerebrum (or at least wish they’d outsource the coverage to the FOX NASCAR team and the Sports Junkies). Once, childs, the convention was where they decided WHO WOULD BE THE CANDIDATE.

This process was controlled by political machines, union leaders, big businessmen, etc etc etc. and was not particularly democratic. But because the parties were stronger and more organized, you could sort of follow the chain up and see that the people who represent the people who represent the people who represent the people who represent the people who represent you were making the decision, so in a way – a very very VERY distant way – you sort of had some say-so over the process. This is the sort of thing that led to the thousand-plus Democratic delegates going through 103 ballots in 1924 to pick their candidate – and prompted one wag to suggest that they change the symbol of the party from one donkey to 1,096 jackasses.

By the 1960s, some states had primaries, some had caucuses, some had state conventions – a real mixed bag. Flash forward to 1968, when the assassination of putative front-runner Bobby Kennedy left the Democrats casting about for a candidate in the midst of a riot and a media circus. In a fit of exhaustion, the party handed the delegate-selection process over to a small group of activists for 1972 – who proceeded to require open selection of delegates, set minimum standards of participation by women, youth and minorities, and put themselves in charge of authenticating the credentials of delegates. Flash forward to 1972, where George McGovern – who chaired the commission above – wins the first prominent Iowa caucus, racks up a lot of winner-take-all delegates, and lands in a convention where stalwart union-ethnic types get decertified in favor of six hippies from Madison, etc etc. Practical upshot: McGovern ends up accepting the nomination at jackass o’clock in the morning, has a debacle with his VP selection, and goes on to valiantly lose 49 states.

This is when a couple of things happened on the D’s side. For one, they introduced proportional allocation of delegates, so one candidate who polled 30% couldn’t swipe an entire state’s delegation. And just in case that wasn’t enough to forestall insurgent candidates (like Ted Kennedy in 1980, challenging a sitting President), they created the superdelegate for 1984: a ranking Party figure, usually a member of Congress or governor or something like that, who would remain unselected until the convention, to insure that the right person got the nod instead of somebody who would lead the Dems to another Cannae.

So that’s how we got the process we have now. It didn’t entirely forestall the possibility of an insurgent – Carter got the nod in 1976. Nor did it ensure a competitive candidate – Mondale was the establishment choice in 1984 and managed to repeat McGovern’s frying-pan-in-the-balls feat of losing 49 states. The Democratic process that bedevils us now is a direct linear result of a fiasco 40 years ago.

As for the Republicans, they never had anything that would lead to those kinds of changes in the process. No superdelegates, mostly winner-take-all allocation of delegates. Maybe if the Reagan insurgency had succeeded in 1976, things would be different, but if Goldwater ’64 didn’t change things, I can’t imagine what would have. Besides, the thing that has always bedeviled the GOP is the whole idea of “it’s his turn.” Which is what put Bush on the ticket in 1988, Dole on the ticket in 1996, and arguably, McCain in 2004. McCain has also made out like a bandit with winner-take-all delegates; until Super Tuesday, I don’t think he broke 40% in any primary or caucus. This is obviously part and parcel of having 4 or 5 candidates in the race, but the fact remains that through no fault of their own, the Republicans have inadvertently handed their top spot to a character who is 72 years old and odious to the majority of the party’s activist base.

If you don’t think there are going to be MASSIVE changes to the GOP selection process for 2012…I’ll take that bet.

So practical upshot: nobody designed the system to work like this. Nobody really intended for anything to work out like this; it evolved organically and just sort of flopped up on the beach. And because the mechanism of delegate selection is ultimately controlled at the state level, it’s going to take a hundred changes to make a difference in every state and both parties.

Judgement Day

Make no mistake: I like Hillary. I think she’s a bright woman with considerable talent who has been famously ill-used by the political media in this country for nearly two decades. I also think she has a bright future in the Senate for as long as she wants to stick around, and would in fact be an ideal figure as Senate Majority Leader, displaying a degree of testicular (uterine?) fortitude that Harry Reid seems tragically incapable of.

However, at this point, I think the writing is on the wall, and it says that the Clinton goose is well and truly cooked. I think she has been failed in spectacular fashion by the gang of idiots running her campaign; the fact that they misread the delegate allocation process in Texas and nearly failed to submit a full slate of delegates in Pennsylvania suggests only one conclusion: the Clinton brain trust never had a Plan B. There was no consideration of what might happen after Super Duper Mega Donkey Collider Tuesday, and now that the nomination is still in play, they’ve fallen back on the worst of all possible solutions: the Rove offense. This is tantamount to going into the locker room down 30 at the half and coming out for the third quarter in the wishbone.

The Rove offense is predicated on two things: the perception of inevitability (shot to hell) and the ability to suppress undecided and independent voters, usually with massive waves of negativity, in order to magnify the impact of the activist base. Now, what any moron who made at least a B in PSCI 101 should be able to tell you is this:

1) Primaries are overwhelmingly contested by activist voters; by definition, anybody who turns out to vote in a primary is almost certainly motivated and non-neutral.

2) Polling demonstrates that going into Feb. 5, roughly three-quarters of each Democratic candidate’s supporters would be happy to have the OTHER candidate as the nominee, which suggests that attempting to drive up the opponent’s negatives is an uphihll fight (not to mention tremendously counter-productive for the general election).

3) Therefore, running the Rove offense at this stage of a binary primary fight is the sign of a drooling moron who should probably be in care, not at the helm of a major campaign. QEMFD.

(There’s only one thing you need to know, really: on the eve of the DC-MD-VA primary, the first big battle after Feb. 5, Clinton’s go-to political maven Mark Penn was…doing a book reading in New York City, thus displacing Doug Feith for the title famously bestowed by Gen. Tommy Franks: “the stupidest f!!!-ing guy on the face of the Earth.”)

Look, I feel for Hillary, I really do. She was basically coming in hobbled from the beginning: by a political press stuck in 10th grade, by 16 years as the highest evil in the Republican mythos, even by a Democratic party who saw her as the one thing that would unite a depressed and fractured GOP and therefore a general-election liability. And there’s a very real chance that if the Democrats win, it will be 2016 before there’s another contested primary for the D’s, at which point she will be 68 years old. It’s not right, it’s not fair, and it’s not good, but there’s no getting around it: Hillary Clinton, fifteen years removed from the White House and pushing 70, will be past her sell-by date as a Presidential candidate. If it’s going to happen, it had to be this year, and at this point, derailing the frontrunner would require a live broadcast of Barack Obama waterboarding a kitten while pouring buckets of motor oil onto a burning Prius and going to third base with Ann Coulter.

So that’s it. At this point, all the Clinton campaign can do is hobble Obama for the general election. (Although it’s possible that another 10-point win for Obama in Texas and/or Ohio would only make him look more powerful, so who knows.) Meanwhile, the Obama campaign looks more and more like one of those running backs who hits the line harder every quarter than the last.

God knows I would love to put off the general election circus – eight months of this is bound to be even worse than last time – but at this point, we’ve got the matchup. Apologies to Clinton, Huckabee, Ron Paul and anyone else who’s still hanging on, but there’s only two seats on the ship, and it’s leaving port.


UK 52

Vandy 93


Largest margin of victory over Kentucky…by halftime, when we led 41-11. Read that again. ELEVEN POINTS IN A HALF. We only won the second half 52-41, but I guess the team must have changed out of Doc Martens at the half.

We lost in Lexington in double-OT earlier in the season, and then had to play a lot of games on the road in an above-average conference. And I’m sure a lot of people were expecting the fast fade in February that has been a hallmark of years past. But nothing ends the wailing of “Same old Vandy” like taking the conference’s most storied program and beating the evangelical Hell out of them.

If you need me, I’ll be finishing this bowl of Honey Bunches of Whoop Ass.