Wake Me Up [DOT 1/9/20]

When September Ends

Hi gang, happy Tuesday! Can you believe it’s September?



A headline in the year of our lord 2020:

Cornered, Trump tries to foment a race war

No shit Sherlock:

If his lips are moving, he’s lying.

As President Donald Trump was painting a positive picture of the coronavirus pandemic and urging states to reopen the nation’s businesses and schools, data from the White House coronavirus task force released Monday shows he was getting increasingly dire reports about the spread of the pandemic in July and August.


Zoom shares soar after revenue more than quadruples from last year

Apple and Tesla are doing stock splits. Here’s what that actually means to investors


John Thompson, coach who built Georgetown basketball into national power, dies at 78

NFL assumes oversight of investigation into Washington Football Team workplace

Have a great Tuesday!



  1. Polls. I know I shouldn’t look, but I can’t look away.
    Anyway, despite the pundit blather, post convention national polling by the LA Times shows Biden holding steady with a 52-41 advantage, confirming earlier polling showing a minimal convention bounce for Trump.
    Other interesting ones — Pinellas County FL, population of almost 1 million, had Biden up by 14, ten percent better than Clinton in 2016. Trump’s margin in the state in 2016 was 100K, so he needs to win a lot of those votes back.
    Members of the active military are backing Biden by 12%. In 2016, they favored Trump over Clinton by 20%. While those numbers are spread out over a lot of states, the implication of that shift across broader demographics is not good for Trump.
    Obviously, two months is enough time for that to change. And as time grows short, the pressure on the GOP to make mayhem will grow and grow. Stormy weather ahead. I hope the levees hold.

    • Right there with you. This is an interesting analysis of the role of racism in Trump’s campaign:
      The article basically says that racism as a campaign strategy has diminishing returns for Trump. The argument is that hard-core racists only represent a fraction of all white voters, and Trump already owns that vote. Increasing his appeals to racism aren’t moving the needle because those appeals aren’t effective on people who aren’t particularly racist. 
      So the harder Trump blows that dogwhistle, the less effect it has. 

        • I think you’re right that people are nervous. But I think the problem Trump has is that he makes Biden seem more appealing every time he starts calling for right wing violence and lets Biden come across as the establishment guy. 

          Biden is fine with condemning burning, and he is not going to drive away anyone, including the Black Lives Matter activists, by saying that (with the exception of fringe white lefties who are probably writing in Jill Stein anyway).

          He will have to repeat what he did yesterday, but tying Trump’s approach to protests to his general hatred for people is an easy step to make. 

          In 1968 Nixon was seen as the closest thing to a centrist candidate. He had Humphrey on the left and George Wallace on the right. Wallace got 13% of the vote that year by basically taking the Trump position, and Nixon was able sell himself as backing the Andy Griffith in Mayberry alternative to both Bull Connor and Jerry Rubin. 

          Trump in theory could pivot to a Nixon position by condemning his racist backers, but I don’t think he could convince anyone he was sincere.

        • …I struggle to understand that effect even as I recognize that it is a real phenomenon

          …the asshole that put the “come on down & bring your guns” request on facebook has the same approach as his glorious leader in that he believes he bears no responsibility for the independent actions of a teenager who answered his summons (& murdered two people) since he couldn’t possibly be expected to have predicted things could go the way they did

          …somehow what took the protestors to the streets is completely ignored, along with the degree to which these armed civilians are the ones in the role of catalyst & instigator for the violence that people claim to be what cools their sympathy

          …it messes with my head that people can agree “in principle” with a grievance & then take further evidence (of a kind that ought to be incontrovertible) that said grievance is legitimate…& claim that it justifies withdrawing their support for the aggrieved parties in order to throw in with those guilty of the very offense they had previously deemed unacceptable

    • Don’t trust polls!

      2016 Exit Polls vs. Actual Results: Here’s What May Have Happened

      It also doesn’t really matter who votes as much as who counts the votes or doesn’t count the votes.

      Yes, We can Bust the Ballot Burglary

      Key takeaway, which I expect to be 10x worst this election:
      “About 2 million voters were blocked from the voter rolls, minimum, in 2016, and 5.8 million ballots were disqualified. That’s an official — official — figure: 5.8 million ballots disqualified. But that means that they can only steal about seven or eight million votes at a time, maybe 10 this year out of 160 million that I expect. So they can’t steal all the votes all the time. We can overcome the steal. Obama did that… When I wrote for Rolling Stone, we calculated 5.9 million votes were stolen from Obama. He just overwhelmed it, that’s all.”

      • George Michael’s early resemblance to Princess Diana is uncanny, isn’t it? Difficult to pull off when your birth name is Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou and you have a maternal Jewish grandmother. Diana was one of the most English of Englanders who ever Englanded, and was far more noble than that German newcomer family she married into.

        • …before she was a princess she was more or less the epitome of what used to be called “a Sloane ranger”(…which I’m pretty sure came from Sloane Square at the end of the King’s Road where you find Peter Jones)

          …Hunter wellies, “Puffa”/Barbour jacket, pearls & a place in town along with “somewhere in the country” were the default markers…& thanks to the Range Rover the whole deal is also the reason that expensive SUVs are sometimes referred to as “Chelsea Tractors”

          [Peter Jones is the branch of the John Lewis Partnership that’s too posh to change its name to John Lewis…which is a department store chain in which all the staff are “partners” in the business & is something of an institution…it took until this year for them to give up their “never knowingly undersold” slogan in the face on online discounts but when I was a kid if you bought something from them & found it available cheaper elsewhere they would generally refund the difference]

          …so she & the Spenser family was very much an old-school Home Counties kind of a tribe, for sure

          …rather more so than the Middleton family, really…although they too are very much Home Counties types…they basically weren’t nearly as posh as the Spenser’s?

          • Oh no. No no no no. The Spencers are related to the Churchills and the Marlboroughs and are a noble family in their own right. I’m not exactly sure how this all ties together but someone on Jezebel a couple of years ago wrote a long comment about the family history. 
            As an American I admire the Middletons. Mom and Dad were in the airline business somehow, Mom was a flight attendant, and then they started a wildly successful mail-order party planning business. Kate went off to St. Andrew’s, prime hunting ground for members of the aristocracy, and the rest is history. They do live in the Home Counties but I just read that Kate was born in a hospital in Reading. At least it wasn’t Slough.

            • …Di’s brother is an earl, so yeah…kind of big difference in social strata…in the days of debutantes she would very much have been “presented to society”

              …Kate…maybe not so much…I don’t have anything against the Middletons, per se…but the ways in which they have enjoyed a fair degree of advantage owing to their association with the royal family (which they undoubtedly have) when compared to the ways in which the public (& indeed “the media”) have treated Harry & Meghan – let alone her family say some ugly things about the baked in views about class in the UK

              …so it’s hard to feel charitable when the whole thing smacks of a livestock auction blended with the worst elements of reality tv?

  2. Today’s recommendation from Amazon:  Mein Kampf, “because you searched The Turner Diaries.”
    I guess under normal circumstances their algorithm would be right on the money.

    • I’ve actually read “Mein Kampf” twice, first in English and then in the original German. That’s what you get for not exactly majoring in German but doing a concentration in all things Deutsch, and concentrating on 1871–1945. 

      • …I never did read that book…but I’m told that on top of all the god-awful things associated with it & its author…it’s perversely boring & somewhat badly written

        …out of curiosity, would you say that sounds fair?

        • More than fair. It’s unhinged but not so much that it doesn’t come off as dull. It’s also very long and repetitive. Copies in German are extremely rare, even though pretty much every household in Germany owned one in the Hitler era. I believe they’re banned outright in Germany. I was only able to read one (a first edition, no less, from the 1920s) because I did a Junior Year Abroad in Germany. The university had a Special Collections division in its library and I had to get special permission from a professor. I was forbidden from photocopying it; I could only take handwritten notes. I suppose as an American they figured I was least likely to foment Neo-Naziism, which is a persistent fear and problem in Germany to this day.

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