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From the GREAT STATE OF MAINE…

Late Night Snark: Ain't No Way to Hide Your Spyin' Eyes

"The U.S. has been spying on German Chancellor Angela Merkel for more than 10 years. Merkel actually called Obama to say that eavesdropping on allies 'is not acceptable.' Then Obama said, 'Yeah, well that's not what you said to England.'"
---Jimmy Fallon

"If the NSA agents are like most men they were probably only pretending to listen to what she was saying anyway."
---Jimmy Kimmel

C SPAN screen grab of Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN)
Some people want a red Solo cup, and
others want a crystal stem. Some want
a competent rep in Congress, and
others want a Marsha Blackburn.
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"How can Americans protect their privacy? My solution: a diary with a little heart-shaped lock."
---Stephen Colbert

"House Republicans this week opened hearings into the failure of the healthcare.gov web site. So don’t worry about that tech issue, America---a bunch of our oldest men are on the case."
---Seth Meyers

"McCain, you don't get to complain---at all. Because, if I remember correctly, no matter how cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs you think your wacko-bird colleagues are, they don't come anywhere close to your hatchling [Sarah Palin]. You opened Pandora's Box---you were the guy who gave the Mogwai a post-midnight all-you-can-eat buffet. You don't get to complain that now the party's overrun with gremlins."
---Jon Stewart, reacting to Senator John McCain's complaint that the tea party is damaging the GOP

"The popularity of Congress is at an all-time low, according to a recent poll that says Americans like head lice more than they like Congress. But, y'know, I think the real story here is that some Americans like head lice."
---Conan O'Brien

And one year ago:
"A new Gallup poll shows that Mitt Romney now has a seven point lead on President Obama. That's right: Romney leads by seven points among people who still answer landline calls from a blocked number."
---Seth Meyers
Happy November. Don't blink or it'll be 2014. Your west coast-friendly edition of  Cheers and Jeers starts below the fold... [Swoosh!!] RIGHTNOW! [Gong!!]

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Poll Correction: The congressman who referred to the House committee as a "monkey court" is Frank Pallone (D-NJ). Pascrell's immortal line was, "Are you really serious?!!" C&J regrets the error.

Cheers and Jeers for Friday, November 1, 2013

Note: The NSA informs me that the content of this note will inform you that there will be no C&J Monday, but it will return Tuesday after I return from the NSA with nothing but truly excellent things to say about the NSA in a You Tube video that will go viral.  [Sigh.]  The things I do for a handful of candy corn...

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Downtown Pomona Chalk Art Festival photo
The chalk squeaks in 8 days!
By the Numbers:
Days 'til the U.S. House returns from its current vacation: 11
Days 'til the Downtown Pomona Chalk Art Festival: 8
Percent of Americans who have positive feelings about the Republican party: 22%
(Source: NBC News-Wall Street Journal poll)
Percent of women who say they plan to vote for Terry McAuliffe (D) and Ken Cuccinelli (R), respectively, in the Virginia gubernatorial race Tuesday: 58%, 34%
(Source: Washington Post poll via kos)
Minimum number of charities Prince Charles has founded: 25
(Source: Time)
Rank of "milf" among top XXX online search terms in New Jersey: #1
Rank of "smoking" among top XXX online search terms in Wyoming: #1
(Source: Details)

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Puppy Pic of the Day: Good catch… Good catch… Good catch…

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Vote November 6 graphic
Write it down, Republicans!
CHEERS to November!  Thirty days of madcap madness: Veterans' Day, Election Day is next Tuesday the 5th (winners: Terry McAuliffe in Virginia and recreational pot in Portland Maine...I GUARANTEE it), Guy Fawkes' Day, Dag van de Dynastie, Dia de la Revolucion Mexicana, the end of Daylight Saving Time (Sunday), St. Andrew's Day, Buss und Bettag (50% off strudel all day), the moon is full on the 17th, Thor returns, The Hunger Games resume (both in theatres and in Congress), and Guru Nanak celebrates another birthday.  Perhaps best of all: this year the first full day of Hanukkah falls on Thanksgiving.  So skip the mashed taters this year---we're goin' the full latke.  (And afterward: spinning dreidels on snoozing Grandpa's belly!)

Newark Mayor Cory Booker places calls form his campaign headquarters to Democratic party members to inform them he is going to run for U.S. Senate in 2014 and not challenge Gov. Chris Christie in next year's gubernatorial race. Newark, NJ  12/20/12  12:43
"The Senate's in trouble?
Hang on--I'm on my way!"
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CHEERS to the new kid.  Yesterday's swearing-in of Cory Booker---who's filling the late Frank Lautenberg's seat---as the junior senator from New Jersey went smoothly, if you don't count Joe Biden inviting senior New Jersey Senator Bob Menendez to join him by saying, "C'mon up here, Frank…Bob."  (Carol, Ted, Alice, whatever.)  And now that the deed is done, we'll wait and see if Senator Booker will be as cozy with Wall Street as some people fear, or if he'll be a down-the-line progressive working on behalf of the poor and middle class as we all hope.  But we do know that at least one happy soul is giving him an A+ for his first day in office: the cat who'd been stuck up in the Capitol dome since 2005.

JEERS to Republican shills on the bench.  On November 1, 1991, Clarence "Did Somebody Say Porn??" Thomas took his place as associate justice on the Supreme Court.  In 22 years, he's barely uttered a sound from his perch. But a few years ago his tea-party activist  wife apparently made up for all that silence by making creepy, harassing phone calls to Anita Hill from her liquor cabinet.  That's the great thing about marriage: teamwork.

Harry Truman holds up newspaper with
On tomorrow's date in 1948:
Dewey defeated Truman. Heh.
CHEERS to a very bad day for the GOP.  Seventy-seven years ago Sunday, on November 3rd, 1936, FDR was re-elected in a landslide over Alf Landon by---get this---523 electoral votes to 8.  Twenty-eight years later Lyndon Johnson beat Barry Goldwater 486-52.  Twenty-eight years after that Bill Clinton dispatched George H.W. Bush by a less-substantial but still impressive 370-168 margin.  And 16 years after that Barack Obama buried John McCain 349-148.  Grand total: 1,428 to 316.  Takeaway message: revenge is a dish best served lopsided.

JEERS to today's edition of "Worst…Congress…Ever."

Bar chart showing laws enacted by various Congresses, with the 113th being by far the worst.
This has been another edition of "Worst…Congress…Ever."  (A Mark Goodson-Bill Toddman production.)

President James K. Polk
Apparently Polk also had
quite a fear of vampire bites.
CHEERS to Ol' Mullethead.  Happy 216th birthday tomorrow to James Knox Polk, the only Speaker of the House to become president.  (Sorry you won’t be the second, Newt, but at least you won the South Carolina primary last year and killed the old adage that whoever wins there clinches the nomination Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Loser.)  Despite protests from some members of Congress, he "exaggerated" his way into a war with Mexico (something about the "smoking gun that could come in the form of a mushroom burrito").  But he definitely walked the walk while he was in office.  In the book Rating the Presidents, over 700 historians and political scientists rank Polk 11th-best:
Polk's outstanding success was no accident. He assiduously planned his moves and carried them through to fruition.  Former president Harry Truman summed it up in his own concise way in 1960.  When asked what he thought about Polk, he replied, "A great president.  He said exactly what he was going to do and he did it."  Quite an achievement for a president of any era.
Yeah, but a few months after he left office he was dead at 53.  Consider that a heads-up, workaholics.

Rachel Maddow with Kent Brockman on
Rachel Maddow shoots the shit
with Kent Brockman on Sunday.
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CHEERS to home vegetation.  After that grueling schedule of watching the Red Sox win the World Series on TV, I need to chill out and relax with some good old-fashioned television!  On HBO's Real Time, Bill Maher talks with Rob Lowe, Rob Reiner, Neil deGrassi Tyson and Debbie Wasserman Schultz, but also poisons the well with Ann Coulter.  Alec Baldwin actually has the better lineup at the same time as Maher, with 2001: A Space Odyssey lead actors Keir Dullea and Gary Lockwood (sadly, HAL could not attend).  Bill Moyers & Company has Yves Smith and Dean Baker shining a light on the potentially awful Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact, and Robert Greenwald previews his new movie about drones.  New DVD releases include Monsters University and not much else.  The schedule for the tax-exempt, non-profit NFL is here.  (The Patriots will "forge" a victory out of the steelers' tears Ha Ha Ha!)  On 60 Minutes: Lamborghini ZOOM!!!  And then, to top it all off, Rachel Maddow guest stars on The Simpsons.  (Spoiler Alert: she plays a character that rhymes with Machel Raddow.)

And here's your Sunday morning lineup---let's see how white, right and male it is:

This Week: White House advisor Dan Pfeiffer; Sen. Rand Paul (R-Wikipedia); Kossack Poblano aka Nate Silver performs his scary-accurate statistical gymnastics; roundtable with Matt Dowd, Van Jones, Jonathan Karl & Mrs. Condescension herself, Peggy Noonan; and Rob Lowe on playing JFK in Killing Kennedy.

Mitt Romney looks surprised
Well, look who's back.
Meet the Press: Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney explains that the nationalized Romneycare plan won't work because it was renamed Obamacare and it sucks.  Current Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick explains that the nationalized Romneycare plan will work because it was renamed Obamacare and it rawks. The roundtable includes Bill Kristol, David Axelrod, Katty Kay and Bob Woodward.

Face the Nation: Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Michigan GOP Rep. Mike Rogers (who is getting close to topping John McCain's 2013 record of appearances on the Sunday shows) on the extent to which the NSA is planting bugs up both our allies' asses and our own; Former NSA director Michael Hayden talks with Bob Schieffer VERY LOUDLY FROM AN AMTRAK QUIET CAR ABOUT NATIONAL SECRETS; Alexandra Zapruder and former LIFE editor Dick Stolley on the Zapruder film that documented JFK's assassination; roundtable with David Sanger (NYT), David Ignatius (WaPost), Jan Crawford and John Dickerson (CBS News).

CNN's State of the Union: Senator Kelly Ayotte (R-NH).  Not sure who else, since their web elves appear to be napping.

Fox GOP Talking Points Sunday: Ezekiel Emanuel and James Capretta play doctor with Chris Wallace; Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-NOTGAY!) continues flogging---what else?---Benghazi!  Roundtable with Evan Bayh, Scott Brown, Karl Rove and Julie Pace

Final tally out of the 30 guests booked: 24 men, 7 Women. 27 whites, 2 blacks, 1 Latino. 12 right-leaning, 9 left-leaning---plus 4 white male hosts and 1 white female host.  Or, as the corporate-political-industrial complex calls it: perfectly balanced.  Happy viewing!

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Five years ago in C&J: November 1, 2008

JEERS to throwing your teammate an anchor.  A fine running mate you chose there, Senator McCain.  Sarah Palin's so over you and your anemic campaign that she's publicly laying out plans to be the chief GOP poo-flinger in 2012.  But don't be too sad, sir---maybe she'll pick you to be her vice president!  [11/1/13 Update: Palin traded her dreams of power for the reality of money.  So we got Mitt as our roadkill instead.  I vividly recall not complaining about that.]

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And just one more…

Penguin striking cymbals above a polar bear's head
1:59am at the Johnson house.
CHEERS to getting an extra hour of sleep.  Daylight Saving Time ends mere hours from now at 2am Sunday.  (Yes, you must stay up 'til 2am to change your clocks or else DST won’t end properly and you'll have to destroy all your clocks and start over, according to the American Clock Sellers Association.)  It's the usual routine: If you're a Democrat, turn your clocks back one hour.  If you're a Republican, turn your clocks back 120 years.

Whatever your weekend plans, have a great time!  Floor's open...What are you cheering and jeering about today?

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Poll

Who won the week?

5%189 votes
7%251 votes
0%3 votes
16%559 votes
24%847 votes
10%367 votes
11%402 votes
0%25 votes
12%434 votes
4%164 votes
1%53 votes
1%49 votes
2%91 votes

| 3436 votes | Vote | Results

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