Palm trees and tourists on Playa Bávaro, Punta Cana, Dominican Republican, February 9, 2016.
Gary took this picture (and the one below) on this final full day in Punta Cana, DR, before returning to D.C. tomorrow.
So it's a bit after 10PM as I start this blog entry, except I just can't really get into writing anything tonight.
It would take too long and I am on a tight schedule this week that includes being to work -- offsite at DOE HQ to staff a particular desk -- by 9AM-ish.
I made it to the gym for a second night in a row, and I intend to do it a third time tomorrow, although I'm unsure of the effectuality of that. My plan is to go out (to Baan Thai and then Trade) after work on Thursday.
Lent begins on Wednesday, but as a fallen Catholic, I mo' definitely don't follow that. (I guess this week is my own little mini-Lent, albeit 4 days instead of 40.)
The beach known as Playa Bávaro, Punta Cana, Dominican Republican, along the Atlantic Ocean, February 9, 2016.
Weather Update ...
The much-discussed snow event was a total bust, but we all knew that ahead of time. Those individual random model runs showing 4 to 8+ inches of snow were all bullshit. Again, we knew that ahead of time.
There was some accumulating -- as in a coating -- of snow in the far northern and western suburbs of D.C. and into the usual elevated places well west and north of D.C. Also, the snowflakes were ginormous in some places, although not here in D.C. (at least in my Dupont / U Street 'hood), where there was basically only a brief rain/snow mix around dawn.
Above: A snowy morning scene in Damascus, Md., in a Twitter photo by user KayNineKay and reposted in this CWG entry.
Tonight is a blustery, cold one and it is going to get uncomfortably cold for the next 5 to 10 days. Highs on Sunday are forecasted only to be 22F even in D.C. proper with lows around 6F.
Snowy forest in northern Montgomery Co., Md., this morning, February 9, 2016.
This picture was taken by Twitter user Jane Bennett Aldous and reposted in this CWG entry. To be clear, it did not look like that along U Street this morning on my little walk to the Metro. Rather, I saw this:
Homeless man looking dazed at the corner of 14th and U Streets NW, Washington, D.C., 8:32AM February 9, 2016.
The hulking, fortress-like, decrepit mass of the Frank Reeves Municipal Center -- which Mayor Bowser refuses to have torn down -- acts as a magnet for the homeless and schizophrenic, although in all honesty, the wealth of the U Street Corridor and adjacent areas probably does, too.
Of note, a reinforcing cold frontal passage progged to move through in the wee hours with some light snow for the Baltimore/Washington corridor. The radar already shows that.
Primary and Secondary Colors ...
New York Times online headline announcing the victory of Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders in the New Hampshire Republican and Democratic primaries, respectively, 11:07PM February 9, 2016.
Tonight the results are sweeping -- swooping? -- in from the New Hampshire Republican and Democratic primaries. The easy winners were Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders.
With 73% of the vote in on the Repug side, Trump has double his nearest rival: 34.6% to John Kasich's 16.2%.
Yes, John Kasich.
And frickin' JEB! is just about tied with Ted Cruz: 11.1% to Cruz's 11.5%.
Left: The current vote tally as shown on the TPM.com site. This is with 73% of the vote counted. I am not going to wait for 100% -- besides, it's not going to change that much.
The really good news (as far as I'm concerned) is that "Marcobot" -- Marco Rubio, that ultimate clueless, ineffectual, would-be tool of the 0.1% donor class -- only has 10.5%, which makes it hard for the frickin' GOP Establishment and Washington Consensus to get all excited about having an "acceptable" Republican candidate.
On the Democratic side, Bernie Sanders crushed Hillary by over 20 points: With 75% of the vote in, the split is 59.6% to 38.7%.
The Sandernistas are in a frenzied, howling, yowling state of ecstatic hysteria tonight and the "Bernie Bros" are spreading their online bile in a way that Republicans -- the world's ultimate "sore winners" -- can appreciate.
Of course, these Sandernistas will be in a frenzied, howling, yowling state of bitter hysteria in November when this naturally ideologically (as opposed to operationally) right-leaning country fails to "feel the Bern" and allows the GOP candidate (whoever it is) to trounce Sanders in a 43-state rout.
Yes, this makes some assumptions about the Republican candidate, but to a large extent (as Josh Marshall once noted about House Republicans), national GOP politicians are essentially voter-proof at this point.
Left: New Hampshire Republican primary vote map with 75% reporting.
Furthermore, as I see the world, running against a widely choleric, unhinged looking, openly avowed "Socialist" (and spare us the "Social Democrat" subtlety -- you might as well quote from your Noam Chomsky and Slavoj Žižek reader at the trailer park) septuagenarian who, oh, by the way, is Jewish, well, that basically ensures Bernie has a shot at only the following states in the GENERAL election (in order of decreasing likelihood):
Vermont, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Washington, and (if only for regional affinity) New Hampshire.
I suppose Delaware, New York, New Jersey, Oregon, and JUST MAYBE Maryland (because of Baltimore City and the D.C. suburbs of Montgomery and Prince George's Counties) might be in the mix, too, although I wouldn't bet on it.
Left: New Hampshire Democratic primary vote map with 75% reporting.
I think I should repost explicitly the link to this Vox.com piece from last week:
TalkingPointsMemo.com headline announcing Sanders and Trump primary wins, 11:21PM Feb. 9, 2016.
The site also includes a colorful description of what the Republican Establishment is presently feeling. That Fred Hiatt's Washington Post Editorial Board is also deeply upset is an additional plus.
Looking ahead, the Democratic primary political terrain is far more friendly to Hillary in the upcoming primaries and caucuses, especially in the South, interior, and intermountain West, but we'll see. I guess anything is possible.
Lastly, I do want to note this Jonathan Chait piece discussing the Supreme Court's 5-4 decision (along the usual horseshit lines that thrill both the Washington Consensus and the conservative entertainment complex, but for different reason) to halt Pres. Obama's clean power plan to curtail CO2 emissions, esp. from filthy, toxic coal-fired generation (of the sort that China can't get enough of).
Here is the piece (link embedded): Supreme Court Halts Obama Power Plan
The last paragraph is worth quoting in full:
Because the Supreme Court ordered the regulation of carbon in the first place, there's little doubt that some kind of power plan could be designed that would pass legal muster. The risk is that the clock is ticking on the Obama administration's term, and if the Court strikes down this plan, and a Republican administration takes office, it will probably decide to let power plants emit all the carbon they want. Which would be bad, and which also illustrates the enormity of the stakes in November. Democrats need to hold on to the White House or literally risk planetary disaster.
A GOP Clean Air Action Plan -- in action.
While I have Jonathan Chait as a topic, these two pieces he wrote about Donald Trump are also well worth a read even if you don't agree with the conclusions (links embedded):
OK, that's all for now. I really do need to go to bed.
I'll try to update the blog tomorrow night, though it is uncertain.