Tag Archives: POLJUNK

POLJUNK: Don’t Be A Fucking Idiot

POLJUNK, the National Affairs desk of Glorious Noise

Welp, the stage is set for the 2024 presidential election and it’s the rematch we all knew was coming. With Nikki Haley “suspending” (a misnomer for quitting) her campaign this week after getting trounced in a primary that was a race in name only, Donald J. Trump is once again the Republican nominee for president. Yes…we’re doing this again.

With a shift to the general election comes a shift in messaging, usually. The most worn general election message is one that asks, “Are you better of today than you were four years ago?” It’s a simple question and one that gets trotted out every four years like clockwork. It’s one that House GOP Conference chair and all-around goofball Elise Stefanik had the gall to ask this week. Let’s see, what was going on in March of 2020…?

Answer to Elise Stafanik asking if you're better off today than four years ago.

Oh right…that.

And lest ye forget, COVID was just the latest in a four-year shitfest of chaos and madness that defined the Trump years. Here’s a quick reminder of the damage he left behind:

  • America’s global image was in shambles and he nearly broke NATO
  • Family separations and the deaths of migrant children at the border. You know…the one he was going to build a wall on and have Mexico pay for it. That didn’t happen either
  • Unilateral withdraw from the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran, created chaos throughout the Middle East we’re still dealing with
  • His decision to pull US troops out of northern Syria in October 2019, abandoning the Kurds
  • Replacing the Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare). Oh wait, that didn’t happen because the ACA provides coverage and requirements for coverage for millions of Americans and the big, beautiful replacement that was forever “two weeks” from delivery never materialized
  • The economy faltered, even though President Obama delivered years of growth. As Business Insider said, “As Trump left office, the US national debt was at the highest levels since World War II. And US economic growth was set to average just above 0% for Trump’s first term because of the pandemic recession, according to The Washington Post.”
  • The dipshit was impeached TWICE and let off by a compliant Republican Senate who seem to have forgotten they represent an equal branch of government and are supposed to stand as a check against just this kind of bullshit
  • The end of Roe v. Wade (which he sometimes brags about and sometimes pretends is someone else’s fault, depending on the audience) means our sister, daughters, nieces and friends have fewer rights to body autonomy than anyone in America in 50 years

I could seriously go on with this list for pages and pages, but you get it. He was awful. Not just on policy either. He was a terrible executive manager and an even worse human being. He’s garbage.

Just imagine what a second Trump administration would be like, especially if the Supreme Court actually endorses his insane idea of absolute Presidential immunity. He’s told us what he would do with that. They told us to “take him seriously, but not literally” and then January 6 happened. And he’s said he’ll be a dictator on Day One, so…

Continue reading POLJUNK: Don’t Be A Fucking Idiot

Election 2020: Where Angels Play

From the National Affairs Desk:

It’s day-whatever in the never ending 2020 election and despite the long, drawn out process, there aren’t really any surprises. Sure, expectations weren’t met as far as a blue wave sweeping across the Senate and state houses, but those expectations were more wishes and dreams than realistic results. We are, after all, in a country where a lunatic has maintained a 40+ percent approval rating. In the end, the characters are playing their parts as we would expect, as in a trite sitcom, which is maybe all we are anyways.

Sitcoms have a formula and one of the truest components of that formula is the Golden Moment (known in the biz as the “moment of shit,”) where all the loose ends are bound up and the lessons of the day are learned. Here we are as a nation at our moment of shit and I have to wonder what lessons have we learned?

First: A Beginning

There’s been a bit of chatter out there about Abraham Lincoln and his first inaugural address. The south had seceded and Lincoln wanted to cool shit down and speak directly to those people who’d left the Union. Lincoln knew that the cost of a civil war would be terrible (though ultimately a cost we’d have to carry) and tried to plead with the south to reconsider:

I am loath to close. We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battlefield and patriot grave to every living heart and hearthstone all over this broad land, will yet swell the chorus of the Union, when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.

Lincoln was an optimist. He believed in the human spirit and that deep, deep down we are good people, bonded more by what we have in common than divided by our differences.

Continue reading Election 2020: Where Angels Play

The Day After

From the National Affairs Desk:

It’s the day after and where are the good people? We should be cleaning up balloons and confetti and gobbling Excedrin like candies to relieve jubilant hangovers, but we’re waiting. We’re waiting to see if predominantly black voters can save us from the hypocrisy and greed of predominantly white voters. More pointedly, white male voters. It turns out that America is still sick from its original sin and I am not sure if there even is a cure.

Despite what is looking more and more like a win for Biden-Harris, It shouldn’t have ever been in question. That is, if we’re really that Shining City on the Hill. Exit polls are bearing out what the early polls showed re: Trump’s base of support. White males support Trump in large numbers, this despite an economy tanked by Trump’s bungling of a national health crisis, scattered civil unrest brought on by systematic police brutality, and four years of continued ugliness. Somewhere upwards of 60% of white American males looked at the mess Trump has created the last four years and decided they’d like more.

Continue reading The Day After

Election 2020: Revenge of the Turtle and the Used Car Salesman

From The National Affairs Desk:

Well, this is it, folks. Election Day 2020 is upon us and while it’s certainly not the end of the Trump nightmare–we have at least until January 21 for him to blow up the whole shithouse–it is the beginning of the end…one way or another. The big question before us these next few days and weeks is what exactly is coming to an end?

Will voters take back control of their government and toss out a serial liar and fraud, or will we enter a period of accelerated disintegration? What does The End look like?

Before we get to the end, I’m not even sure when it started. Was it Bush v. Gore some 20 years ago when the United States Supreme Court stepped in to stop a recount that Al Gore was winning to hand the election to a dim-witted son of a President? Was it before that when right-wing radio rose up to scream in the faces of delivery guys and salesmen stuck in rush hour traffic and mourning the loss of the Shining City on a Hill first promised, then condemned with the election of a Clinton

Or was it in an earlier, darker time when the whisper of a “silent majority” who valued law & order over justice was waiting in the wings standing back and standing by for the order to attack? And attack they did, with billy clubs, tear gas, mandatory minimums and a gerrymandering scheme to make LBJ blush. 

Continue reading Election 2020: Revenge of the Turtle and the Used Car Salesman

In Memoriam: The Iowa Caucus 1972-2020

We’ve now officially begun another election year cycle, a testament to the privileges of our nation, but one that reflects an increasingly polarized climate where many voters have already cashed out on our great American Experiment. The manner in which we nominate Presidential candidates continues to evolve and mirror the reality of our country–for better or worse–while allowing a much needed discussion about the process itself.

Many voices from this self-reflection wonder if having two small and predominately white states (Iowa and New Hampshire) remains the best first-step for this effort, particularly when much of the divide in America is rooted in the lack of tolerance toward one another. Should we continue to allow two states that don’t accurately represent the demographics of our country the privilege of determining a suitable voice for this critically important effort?

Front and center was the 2020 Iowa caucus. The “first in the nation” state proved to be a complete shit show, mired in chaos from the ineptitude of Iowa Democratic Party leadership, the lack of effective training for local party volunteers assigned with the task of running their precincts and the failure of a smart phone reporting app that was rushed-to-launch days before the caucus itself.

When the dust settled and Iowa was still not any closer to providing the rest of the country with results days after the caucus ended, the calls to initiate changes to the process began ringing with more intensity and with greater resolve.

How was Iowa blessed with their first in the nation status? The answer originated in a different time. It was a world in which the backroom deals of our two major political parties created a process of selection that would be obediently followed for decades, without much dispute.

This began to unravel in 2016 when Iowa caucus-goers seemed to split evenly between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders. The moment our state was unable to declare a candidate’s decisive victory was when those frustrated began to try to learn more about the process, perhaps with the intention to help us dumb yokels provide the results in a manner that was easier to explain and more efficient to report.

In their discovery, they began to learn about the informality of our caucuses. Our process lacked real transparency in terms of how delegates were appointed and it was filled with antiquated methods like raw vote counts and coin tosses. The entire event was hard to understand and even harder to explain among the journalists and reporters who flocked to our state with barely hidden resentment at having to spend the winter with a bunch of hayseeds, flipping quarters between Bernie and Hillary.

It was the Sanders camp that first approached the Democratic National Committee with their apprehension about the Iowa caucuses. The DNC then met with Iowa State Democratic leadership to introduce their concerns and request the first real meaningful changes to our process since 1972. Iowa responded positively to these suggestions, even telling our national party leadership of an aggressive initiative to transition our antiquated caucus process into a digital platform that allowed party members to vote from their smart phones.

When questions about the access and security of such a reporting method arose, state leaders backpedaled and considered a more measured solution. Iowa would implement a paper process for their candidate selection, but enable precincts to report the results of their caucus through a phone app. This app would help calculate the raw votes into appropriate delegate numbers while providing the state party with immediate, real-time results. The paper trail would provide a way to audit and verify the results if there was any uncertainty.

Continue reading In Memoriam: The Iowa Caucus 1972-2020

Vote Blue!

After the election of 2016 we made a conscious decision to keep Glorious Noise focused on sharing good new music with our readers. Everybody involved with this site is still engaged politically, and you can always follow @poljunk, our national affairs desk, but it’s important to be able to step away from the constant stream of outrageous shit going on in the world and enjoy a modicum of peace and happiness.

We’ve shared a cool new video or an interesting article just about every weekday since then.

But now’s the time for action.

Today’s Republican Party is a disgrace to the ideals this country was founded on. The United States of America needs you to elect Democrats to keep the current administration in check. That’s the only way to temper this insanity.

I’ve heard people I respect say this is the most important election of our lifetime. That might be true, although we wouldn’t be in this wretched mess if voters hadn’t been so fucking stupid last time.

After 2016, who’s to say Americans even deserve democracy?

Nevertheless, here we are. The ballots are set. If you don’t love the Democrats on your ballot, tough shit. Work harder in the primaries next time and help your perfect candidate win the nomination. Elections are no place for naive idealism. American politics are a numbers game and majority rules.

Elect Dems or else the bad guys win. Hyperbole? Barely. Republicans are perpetrating some genuinely evil stuff lately. Like overt racism, blatant corruption, and literally locking children in cages.

If you care about healthcare, the environment, gun violence, equal rights for everybody, facts, not locking children in cages, fair elections, justice, and the general welfare of the population, you need to get out and vote for Democrats.

Do it! Vote.

Cover image: “The American Dream” by Tom Benton, 1968.

Hillary Clinton is Not the Lesser of Two Evils: She is GOOD

I consider myself a connoisseur of reality television. I realize that many smart people dismiss the genre in favor of make-believe stories, and I get it. There is a lot of really terrible reality tv. Of course, there is also a lot terrible scripted tv. Sturgeon’s revelation, yo. At its best, reality tv features all the hallmarks of any good narrative: interesting character development, unexpected plot twists, a reflection of a societal value.

The Apprentice was never great television. But it was entertaining for a while. I watched most of the first twelve seasons of The Apprentice/Celebrity Apprentice. I enjoyed the premise of contestants working together on teams to complete a mission each week with one person from the losing team being eliminated. Celebrity Apprentice often exposed a different side of famous people than what is typically showcased in official publicity campaigns. You could find out who was actually smart (Joan Rivers, Arsenio Hall, Bret Michaels), and who was as dumb as you’d thought they would be (Gene Simmons, Rod Blagojevich).

The host, Donald Trump, fell into the latter class. On the show, he came across as a self-important buffoon. In the “boardroom” at the end of each episode where Trump decides who gets fired, he would ask the contestants and his advisors for their opinions on who should be “fired” and why. Revealing the attention span of a toddler, Trump would frequently cut short these discussions and make a brash decision based on something stupid that had nothing directly to do with the challenge. One week somebody would get fired for not defending themselves strongly enough in the boardroom; the next week another person would get fired for being too argumentative and abrasive. It was arbitrary. After the contestants left the boardroom, Trump inevitably would say to his advisors, “That was the right decision, don’t you agree?”

It was hilarious. His insecurity was so obvious. He’s so blatantly the “tough guy” with no real backbone. He’s Francis from Pee Wee’s Big Adventure. This was all completely clear when you watched the show. And it was funny.

But it’s not funny anymore.

Because now instead of his ill-informed decisions sending Khloé Kardashian packing her bags, his decisions could determine who is sitting on the Supreme Court, and whether or not the United States will honor its treaties with NATO.

Even before he called Mexicans rapists, incited political violence, encouraged racism and religious discrimination, he proved himself unfit for the presidency by just being such a clown.

Continue reading Hillary Clinton is Not the Lesser of Two Evils: She is GOOD

Three Hundred Things People Are Saying About #TrumpDoc

trumpdoc

A lot of people are saying things about this photo. Not us, but a lot of people. Some very smart people; the best people.

I updated my Facebook picture with his smirking mug and added a couple comments. That got people talking…a lot of them.

Here are 300+ things people are saying about #TrumpDoc (of the 570, and counting).

  1. Can’t stop telling you about the time he met Donald Fagan at a boat show.
  2. Ends every question during a physical with, “If you know what I mean…”
  3. Signs your high school physical form on sight, asks if your mom’s dating.
  4. Asks if you’ve ever ridden in a convertible, casually dangles Sebring keys.
  5. Won’t stop asking if you’ve signed up for his band’s mailing list.
  6. Has a secret stash of Zima on his boat, Breakin’ Wind.
  7. Says Michael McDonald is “the voice of my generation!”
  8. Thinks AOL is the Internet. Concurrently somehow still has a NetZero account.
  9. Invites you over to see his margarita glass signed by Jimmy Buffett after he “saved his f*ckin’ life from a ‘gator the size of a goddamn Buick” in a parking lot in the Keys
  10. His favorite coffee mug is a badly stained, circa 1985 plastic one with a barely legible racist joke on it. It leaks, so he wraps it in a bandanna. Continue reading Three Hundred Things People Are Saying About #TrumpDoc

Don’t be a sucker. Register to vote.

This is a reminder that it’s important to register to vote if you haven’t already. It’s not hard to do, and it really does matter. Even if you live in a very “safe” state, the national popular vote determines how big of a mandate the winner has received. You can’t vote if you’re not registered, so please register to vote.

If you’re paying any attention at all, you might have noticed that we are approaching some very dark times in this country. Things are getting more and more weird and ugly and mean. Let’s all do what we can to make it better. Elections matter. Don’t fuck this one up, America.

Main image by Thomas W. Benton. And follow @poljunk on twitter.

Lift Every Voice And Sing: Election 2012

We get it: You’re sick of it. You’re sick of all of the ads and the robocalls and people on Facebook telling you to vote. Yep, it’s annoying.

Here’s what’s more annoying: Generations of people have fought for your right to vote. They have died for it. Their kids did not get to see them step off the plane and into welcoming arms. Their spouses did not get to finally have a morning where the doorbell ringing sent them into a panic. Their parents didn’t get to see them grow into the better versions of themselves. They died and they are still dying.

The least you can do is show your thanks by exercising your right to be heard.

And because we at GLONO have never, ever pretended to be objective: Vote Democratic. We know you, we know you have good taste and a good head on your shoulders. Don’t tell us you’ve been hoodwinked by a “severe conservative” who can now magically bring the parties together for “real change on Day One.” We don’t believe it.

  • We KNOW you love your moms and sisters and wives and daughters and want as much opportunity for them as your dads and brothers and husbands and sons enjoy.
  • We know you know gay people and know they are just like you.
  • We know you think it’s crazy that people can buy elections (prove them wrong).
  • We know you don’t really believe people who are sick should also be bankrupt.
  • We know you don’t think teachers and firemen are the source of our sluggish economic recovery.
  • We know that you don’t expect a president—any president—to solve all your problems but can recognize the difference between competent government and an ideology that doesn’t think such a thing is possible.
  • We know you expect more but also know when you’re being sold a bill of goods.

We’ll be live-tweeting later. Get your political fix from the team by following POLJUNK: The National Affairs Desk of Glorious Noise on Twitter: @poljunk

God Bless America.