Friday, February 19, 2016
This v. That
McConnell v. Obama
Mitch McConnell did not have to announce that the Senate would not consider an Obama nomination to the Supreme Court. If he didn't want an Obama candidate confirmed, he could have held hearings and had his party reject the appointment. He's been doing that over and over with Obama appointments to the Court of Appeals.
I doubt that he acted without thinking, thereby inadvertently blowing up a political storm. He wanted the public conflict, and he got it. Presumably, he hopes it will motivate more Republicans to go to the polls in November, despite the fact that most of them will have supported candidates who lost in the primaries all the while developing a pretty intense dislike for the eventual winner.
Tim Cook v. FBI
FBI Director James Comey kept his agency's conflict with Tim Cook and Apple quiet for over a year, then decided to go public when he could exploit the San Bernadino shooting to force Apple to breach its customers' security. Tr*mp isn't the only one exploiting fear to compromise civil liberties.
Don't blame Comey, though. He's just the public face of the administration's ongoing effort to have easy and immediate access to all your personal data. When it comes to violation of privacy and establishment of the national security state, Obama is second to none.
The Donald v. the Pope
Dissing the Pope will not do Tr*mp any damage at all. Most of his redneck supporters probably hate Catholics anyway, and the Catholics among his supporters are pissed at Francis for "betraying" the virulently anti-Communist John Paul and Hitler Youth graduate Benedict; not to mention failing to lead the hate parade against Muslims and gays.
Me, I'm an atheist, but I'm still more of a Christian than Tr*mp. Oh, well. Except for Trump winning again, I expect the outcome of the South Carolina Republican primary to be largely inconclusive, so the merry chase will continue on towards Super Tuesday.