What a wacky and weird week it was, with the general election kicking into full gear as primaries finished around the country last week, and for maybe the first time in American politics (history?), a candidate's past revealed as dabbling in....witch craft.
A clip from Bill Maher's "Politically Incorrect" in 1999 has Christine O'Donnell, the Republican nominee for Joe Biden's old senate seat in Delaware, saying she "dabbled in witch craft." But, you know. Didn't join a coven or anything.
"I hung around people who were doing these things. I'm not making this stuff up. I know what they told me they do. One of my first dates with a witch was on a satanic altar and I didn't know it. I mean, there was a little blood there and stuff like that.
We went to a movie and then had a little picnic on a satanic altar."
I love the line, "one of my FIRST dates with a witch." So there must have been a bunch of movie watching, satantic alter picnicing, wiccan make out sesh's.
I wonder what movie they saw.
Christine O'Donnell was an interesting and scary candidate before all of this, winning an upset victory in the primary over Republican establishment candidate Mike Castle with the help of Sarah Palin and other Tea Party supporters. The stuff she's said in the past is downright bizarre and sometimes offensive, saying that homosexuality is an 'identity disorder,' and that masturbation is a sin. She has some very lengthy views on the subject, which she discusses in a spot from MTV in the 90's you can watch here:
As fringe and out there as her views are, there's something hard not to like about Christine O'Donnell. She's crazy, but in a fun way. She's a cute, bubbly, maybe witch who's got some serious unresolved dating issues. What's great about Bill Maher airing the clip is when he says "Sarah Palin's mean, Christine O'Donnell's not." She's like that really annoying but cute girl in high school who was all about God but then you find out she secretly makes out with the dude in the Marilyn Manson t-shirt and trench coat no one talks to.
Of course, if she is to win the race in November, having someone like her in the senate will be scarier than any 90's sexually pure coven you can imagine.
Carrrrrrrl "I'm Gonna Beat the Shit out of Albany with a Baseball Bat" Paladino
This week Mike Bloomberg endorsed Andrew Cuomo, the Democratic nominee for Governor in New York, the same day a new poll was released showing a narrowing gap between Cuomo and his hilariously vulgar and loud mouthed opponent, upstate millionaire real estate mogul Carl Paladino. Cuomo only leads Paladino in the poll by 6 points.
Paladino came onto the scene only a few weeks ago, unexpectedly beating Rick Lazio for the Republican nomination as a self described Tea Partier riding a wave of angry and crazy, talking about blood being on the floor in Albany when he gets there. He has since played into his reputation for being an asshole. Paladino, who in the past has forwarded racist and sexually weird emails, was right there ready with the sluggers for Bloomberg and Cuomo.
Michael Caputo, Paladino's drunk Russian brawling campaign manager (true story), released this statement:
“His Royal Highness opposes the will of the people on the Mosque and subverted the will of the people on term limits, so it’s no surprise Bloomberg is missing the point on this important election and climbing into the same royal coach as Prince Andrew. One upside to this: the two can stop passing Grey Poupon back and forth from their limousines. It's really holding up traffic."
Among other outlandishly wacky things the Paladino campaign is throwing at Cuomo in one of the more immaturely fascinating races in recent history, is sending a campaign worker dressed as a duck to Cuomo events and making loud quacking sounds, saying Cuomo is "ducking" a debate with Paladino.
Look at this bad ass.
The New York Times yesterday had a great cover story about his campaign manager, Caputo. The two first met when Caputo was a 14 year old in Buffalo, and was caught stealing a box of change from a newsstand outside of a building Paladino owned. Apparently Paladino grabbed Caputo by the ears, dragged him outside and kicked him in the legs six times.
He kicked a 14 year old kid in the legs 6 fucking times.
Caputo later went on to work as a public affairs specialist for the army, where he got a bullet wound from a drunken Russian rival during the Cold War. He's also a total Dead Head, and has been to over a hundred of their shows.
Cumono released an attack ad on Paladino after the poll was released, and is now forced to be on the offensive to try and avoid the same mistake Rick Lazio made by not taking Crazy Carl on directly.
Anyway, everybody get pumped for this week's Paladino stunt. I think it's going to have something to do with strippers, Charlie Rangel, and ice hockey.
Senate Republicans Block Vote on "Don't Ask, Don't Tell"
This week senate Republicans filibustered a vote on a military budget bill that had a provision to repeal "Don't Ask, Don't Tell", the ban on gays and lesbians from serving openly in the military. While Senate Majority Leader Harry Ried has promised to bring the bill up for another vote after the elections, I don't have my hopes up it'll pass even then.
There was a remarkable amount of attention given to the federal court in California ruling Proposition 8 unconstitutional a few weeks ago, but this story has gone strangely over looked by young progressives who view gay rights as a major issue. It would be a huge deal to repeal the ban for gay rights activists and the Obama Administration, and would be one of the few major legislative victories for gay rights in recent years. Why then is there such a lack of enthusiasm among young voters at a grass roots level?
While people like the Tea Party won't outright say it, the culture wars in America are brewing again in a large and scary way with this issue and the debate over the Islamic Cultural Center near Ground Zero. These things weren't talked about nearly as much in the 2008 election when young people were out like never before, but there's a complacency right now among the young people on the left that lets people like Christine O'Donnell and Sarah Palin run the debate.
Obama Gives Shout Outs to Health Care Law and Middle East Peace Talks
President Barry O'biz had a busy week promoting the new health care law which saw many of it's key provisions kick in on Thursday. He'd hoped by now Democrats could campaign on some of the things in the bill, but the only ones who seem to want to talk about it are those who didn't vote for it. While many Americans will see some good stuff right now, most still seem to think it's an Obamacare government plot to kill grandma and steal your kitten.
If you're under 26 and haven't already, talk to your parents about getting back on their plan, as that's one of the things that went into effect this week.
Obama then clogged up midtown traffic for a couple of days in New York at the annual UN conference, the Oscars and fairly uneventful event of the year for foreign relations. While last year Obama was clearly the darling of the event, with world leaders practically drooling over his speech and interrupting with scattered applause, this year's speech was pretty tame. Obama spent a considerable amount of time talking about the recently renewed peace talks between Israel and Palestine. It's good to see the administration giving the issue attention, as everything seemed pretty much dead when Israel continued building settlements in the West Bank. Obama openly repeated his stance on Israel stopping the settlements, and Palestine has threatened to back out of negotiations if the building continues.
It's kind of scary and disheartening the whole world seems to be skeptical of the talks.
Following the speech, Obama met with Chinese President Hu Jintao to urge him to revalue China's currency. Jintau replied, "Yeah, yeah. Sure, sure. Totally. Totally gonna do it. Real soon."
In his annual middle finger to the rest of the world, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, in an attempt to say maybe the only crazy thing he hasn't already said, came out as, yes, a 9/11 truther. He thinks Bush and Cheney did it, and that most Americans think so. 33 delegations walked out during the speech including the entire European Union.
The election is coming up on November 2nd, so it's time to get all nice and registered so you can stroll into your local polling station and do the deed (voting's more fun when it sounds dirty.) Chances are you've moved in the past year or two, so it's important to update your registration to your current address. It's super easy, you just fill out this form, and either mail it in or drop it off at your borough's elections office. You can download the PDF here:
You can still technically vote at your old address, but that's just weird. Also, if you're still registered in your home town, girl you know you ain't gettin' your ass to California to vote so just fill that form out.
That's this week's Steze. If you haven't already, check out the first episode of Tick Tock. See y'all next week.