Tag Archives: washington

Diary of a disenfranchised Democrat

Ok, I published this a few years ago but with the pundits hopping all over themselves to write President Obama’s most recent obituary, I thought we could use a laugh.  Oh, how the 1990s were just an era of wonderful bipartisanship and hope…

 

There’s been a lot of talk about how President Obama is in trouble with his base.  The narrative goes something like this: liberals are disappointed with Barack Obama’s performance.  Maybe he has been too timid, too hands-off, too much of a law professor when what we neehttp://www.alysonchadwick.com/wp-admin/admin-ajax.php?post_id=688&action=grunion_form_builder&TB_iframe=true&width=768&id=add_formded was a scrappy street fighter, willing to go toe-to-toe with an obstructionist Congress and the wiley John Boehner and Eric “Dr. No” Cantor.  Neither Bill or Hillary Clinton would have put up with this malarky.  No, sir.

My friend, Chris Rugaber (you know the AP business writer, if you don’t read his stuff, you should start), sent me this piece: When did liberals become so unreasonable? The idea being, that liberals are never happy with anything.  I dug through my personal papers and the following represent excerpts from my journal.

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Fall 1991:

Dear Diary,

My mom and I were talking about what Democrats will run for president next year.  Seems pointless to me.  George Bush is just so dang popular, what with that stupid Iraq war and all.  I like Paul Tsongas a lot but, seriously, another liberal, Greek from Mass?  That’s never gonna happen.  I said Bill Clinton is the only viable candidate.  She thinks his performance at the 1988 Democratic Convention will do him in, they did lower him off the stage and all, but I think he’s got a certain “je ne sais quoi.”  I cannot wait to move to France.  If Bush gets reelected, I am going to move there.

Winter 1992

Dear Diary,

Well, I don’t have to move to France.  Bill Clinton is our new president!  We have the White House, the Senate and House of Representatives!  I hear that means a lot!  There’s nothing stopping us now!  We are going to make health care available to everyone!  It’s a good time to be alive!  Diary, you had better not stop thinking about tomorrow!  I know I won’t!1

Spring 1993

Dear Diary,

This has been a sad time for Democrats.  We have a Dem in the White House and control both sides of Capitol Hill but President Clinton’s stimulus package went down in flames in the Senate, damn you filibuster! ( http://www.nytimes.com/1993/04/22/us/gop-senators-prevail-sinking-clinton-s-economic-stimulus-bill.html) Weren’t they paying attention to the It’s the economy, stupid! message?  Hello! I remain hopeful that we can get healthcare reform through, Hillary Rodham, I mean Hillary Rodham Clinton (I keep forgetting she is using his name now!) is heading up the committee for that so I am sure it will go through.  She tried to soften her image with that cookie recipe and my mom swears by her turkey tips (hint: avoid basting by putting bacon on top — saves time and is delicious!) but she’s tough as nails. President Clinton’s lack of foreign policy experience is pretty clear, I sure wish we’d stop the genocide in Bosnia.  Slobodan Molosovic sounds like a dick.

Fall 1993

Dear Diary,

I just cannot shake the feeling that we are fucking up big time here.   If we cannot capitalize on the promise of Bill Clinton, we are totally screwed.  Does he know the damage he is doing to our party and system?  Bosnia remains a mess.  When are we going to help these people?  I hear there’s going to be a new Holocaust museum in Washington, DC, I sure hope they look into Bosnia.  This crap is unacceptable.  None of my friends will even talk to me about it.  And now the crazy “liberal” media seems obsessed with some innocent investments the Clintons made a thousand years ago, I think they’re calling it white-water?  I don’t know why they are so anti-rafting.  Seems like a good hobby to me.

Spring 1994

Dear Diary,

Am so depressed.  Hillary Clinton’s health reform looks to be headed towards disaster!  They say she didn’t consult Congress enough, as if!  What has happened to our party?  I thought we had some guts but I guess not.  Man, Bill Clinton sucks.

Winter 1994

Well, the end of the world is here.  Officially.  The Republicans just took the House back — after about a million years.  The Speaker was the first to lose his seat since we had a speaker.  Healthcare reform died a painful death.  Damn senators act like they should be consulted on policy issues, how rude!  Don’t they know Bill Clinton is a D?  Stupid “liberal” media is still into that rafting crap.  Have they no lives?

Winter 1995

Dear Diary,

Have been too depressed to write.  Bill Clinton has failed us all.  First no action on Bosnia, then health care reform failure and then he was all about welfare reform.  Says that will be his big thing should he win reelection, good luck, jerk.  Thank god for Newt Gingrich.  He was so mean/whiny that he made us look good.  Shut down the government because he was pissed about his seat on AF1.  I sure wish Democrats would grow a pair.

Winter 1997

Dear Diary,

Wow. It’s been a painful few years.  When did Democrats stop being Democrats?  Sure we had a few victories but that’s all because Newt Gingrich is so stupid. And whiny.  Bill Clinton totally caved to the GOP on the last two budgets and welfare reform.  Thank goodness he won reelection, though he seems more like a Republican.  That rafting thing ended up being more of a big deal than I had thought. And now, it looks like he may have had an affair with an intern.  Question:  If you know the world is watching you, can you keep your pants on for five minutes?  No?  Work on it.

January 1998

Dear Diary,

Just got a job in the record industry (publicist for RCA Victor).  All my friends were surprised that I would pick music over politics but it has been hard to be a Dem.  Fr weeks, every day, reading the paper has been a challenge.  But then I was walking down the street and had a thought — why am I upset with Bill Clinton?  He has been a good president.  We have had a near unprecedented period of peace and prosperity.  That has been a good thing.  I am tired of being unhappy with him for stupid crap that doesn’t matter.

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Ok, those aren’t really from my journals, though I am sure I wrote similar things back then.  I remember worrying that Bill Clinton was going to squander the opportunity to do some truly spectacular things with his presidency.  I could not understand why Congress resisted working with him, did they not understand that he and they were in the same party?

It is easy to criticize President Obama for being too hands off when dealing with Congress, his absence from the conversations about the debt ceiling or the super committee’s failure only reinforces the narrative and it is easy to forget that he accomplished more in his first year in office than Bill Clinton.  He also managed to get health care reform, as imperfect as it is, passed.  I would like him to be more of a fighter, to het his hands dirty a little — politics is a dirty business — but that’s not who he is.  That’s also not the person many people voted for.  I am going to try to remind myself of how I felt during the Clinton administration whenever I am tempted to buy into the narrative that says I am supposed to be disappointed in President Obama.

More Proof Paul Ryan is Running for President

Congressman Paul Ryan is running for president.   I say this not because Republican insiders have told me so — and they have — but because of his “evolving” views on same sex couples. He still opposes same sex marriage but is now open to allowing gays to adopt — a change from the position he heldin 1999 when he voted against it.  You can read about that here.

To me, it’s pretty clear, 2016 will be Hillary v. Ryan.  And you may think she’ll wipe the floor with him but I am not so sure.  He’s got a lot going for him, including a decent “narrative.”  They are both Washington insiders but he’s young(er).  The Democrats count him out at their own peril.

Happy Easter (for reals this time)

If you are so inclined, I hope your Easter celebrations were good.  My day was destroyed by the devastating news that Justin Bieber‘s monkey was confiscated in Germany.  He apparently did not have the correct paperwork for his pet, who is now in quarantine.  This is all true, you can read the story here.  Side question: what is it about fame and fortune that makes people go completely insane?  For Bieber, and I speak from personal experience from my days at RCA Victor (no, not with Bieber), I blame his handlers and the record company execs who treat him like he shits gold.  I worked with artists who completely sane and normal when they started with us and as they asked for things — and got them — they became more and more self centered, whiny and just bat fucking insane.  I was a publicist and I had artists call me at home (and on my cell) pretty much any time they felt so inclined.  Just getting in from a night of partying and you want to know what your Soundscan numbers are?  Just call your publicist.  She doesn’t need to sleep.  PS.  Dear Mr. Bieber, while you are on top of the world now, in a year, or five, no one will care who you are so make sure your financial advisors don’t suck because your music career has an expiration date and I think someone should tell you that.  Don’t take my word for it, ask  someone you trust and who doesn’t depend on you for their living.  If you don’t have a person like that in your life, and you may not (Lindsay Lohan clearly doesn’t either), buy one, rent one, find one on Craig’s list, just do it.  You’ll thank me later.

Luckily, my day was saved by news about this invention.  What is it?  A toothbrush that plays music.  What music?  One Direction was mentioned in the ad I saw.  I MUST GET ONE IMMEDIATELY.  Anyone who knows me knows I love brushing my teeth (seriously, I wake up at night and sometimes get up to brush them), so add One Direction to my tooth brushing, well, it is a glorious time to be alive.  Glorious, I tell you!  Glorious!

Other thoughts from today include…

Who writes the copy for Safeway frozen dinners?  I am lazy and cooking just is too much a lot so I do eat frozen food a lot.  I like the Safeyway dinners because they are decent and cheap but I happened to look at the back of their fettucini alfredo, the description reads “A Delicious Classic with a Delightful Ending” (capitalization is theirs).  What is that all about? You know what that says to me, “If you like it going in, you will love it coming out.” Nothing makes me excited about food like the expectation of an awesome crap later.  To think I thought eating the food was the fun part!

Oh, on my Daily Banter page, which you need to check out right now, I mentioned a humorous story about my mother – and this is one where she doesn’t look bad so I don’t have to worry about that (at least not right now).  When I first moved to Washington, DC, I lived with my mother and her husband.  A few months later, a group of my friends came to DC to attend a pride rally.  They were mostly lesbians, which is only relevant because of what happened when they rang my mother’s door and their reaction.  You see, we also had a family friend visiting and he liked to walk around naked.  He was sleeping on our couch when they rang the bell and naturally answered the door and he was, as usual, naked.  My friends, who may not have seen a naked man in a very long time were not expecting that – “Are you sure this is Alyson’s mother’s house?” They asked.  He assured them that is was and brought them in and then tried to rouse me (it was 7:00 am on a Saturday and I had been out late the night before, yes, I was hungover, sue me).  Then they all sat uncomfortably in the living room.  When my mother returned from the store, her surprise was at my friends’ arrival and my friends were surprised by her reaction to his nakedness, which was no response at all.  Anyway, I was proud of her that day.  Still wish I didn’t have to come out as straight every Christmas but what are you gonna do?

And as it is Easter, I am watching the Wizard of Oz.  This means my obsession with the munchkin suicide.  I don’t care if the “myth” has been debunked, I think it is real.  Please watch this video.

The icing on my day was having to call Comcast as the old cable box I had made me choose between having a picture or audio.  They actually asked me “Which do you want, picture or audio?”   Uh, both?  Anyway, after getting a new box and spending hours dealing with them, it still doesn’t work and after getting the account number, serial numbers for both boxes and more information than I give my physician, they said if I did not give the social security number of the account holder (not mine but I would not give it if it was our of principle) they would “find it hard to believe” that I am authorized to have them send a signal to the box.  I asked the representative what they were thinking.  What, am I part of some crazy gang that breaks into houses and fixes their cable?  Yo, Pete, put down that computer, these people have terrible cable reception, we need to fix this.

Oh, and while I am being random…  I saw three deer in a neighbor’s yard yesterday.  I nearly fainted and thought it was great.  Great, I tell you!  Great!  Then my landlord told me that DC has a new program where sharp shooters can kill deer in Rock Creek Park to reduce their over population.  I never saw Bambi (really, and no, I have not seen ET either) but they looked like her and may meet the same fate (I hear she is shot at the end, talk about a reason not to watch a movie or show it to kids — hey kids, wanna watch a movies about a cute animal that you will love?  Warning: they kill that cute animal at the end. And people think the movies about serial killers I watched as a child were disturbing).

But I have digressed from celebrating Jesus’ rebirth.  I love that what we do for this doesn’t have anything to do with Jesus.  I mean I love peeps as much as the next person but were marshmallows around when Jesus was alive?

Seriously, I hope you had a great day and if this day has meaning for you — I wish you the best.  And I mean that sincerely.