Open Thread for (late) Monday, July 23, 2018

NYT page

Yeah, I’m still here. Super, super busy is all. Here are some topics…

  1. Tariffs Imperil a Hometown Business in South Carolina: BMW — This was several days ago, but it was huge: It took up most of the NYT front page above the fold. And the Charleston paper played their own story on the subject even bigger on their front on Sunday.
  2. 17 Dead After Amphibious Tour Boat Sinks In Missouri Lake — Horrific. Something I wonder about, but haven’t seen an answer to in coverage: Are these “ducks” the same amphibious vehicles used in landings in WWII?
  3. Toronto: suspect identified in shooting that left two dead and 13 injured — And then there’s this. I wish I had better news for y’all.
  4. They Vowed to Fix the Subway. On-Time Rates Are Still Terrible. — Also from NYT. Many of y’all probably don’t care, but like Frank Horrigan in “In the Line of Fire,” I love me some public transportation. Especially the systems in NYC, London and Bangkok. And Disney World, of course. I hate to see subways having trouble.
  5. Striptease and half naked football players part of Clemson event for female fans, video shows — Because y’all always say I don’t give you enough sports news. Does this count? Speaking of which, I just finished (during my early-morning workouts) rewatching Ken Burns’ “Baseball” series, this time complete with the updates that take it through the early 2000s. They have the Red Sox breaking the Bambino Curse, but it doesn’t get as far as the Cubbies breaking their even longer one. Great stuff, though…
Frank Horrigan and I love public transportation...

Frank Horrigan and I love public transportation…

20 thoughts on “Open Thread for (late) Monday, July 23, 2018

  1. Doug Ross

    105 days until the election. Since Brad probably can’t talk about it here, does anyone else have any thoughts on the governor’s race? I’ve been surprised at how low key it has been since the primary. The Planned Parenthood veto by McMaster was in the news for a day and then fizzled out.

    I watched an extended interview James Smith and Mandy Powers Norell did recently and found it interesting that Mandy seemed to be the one with more energy, passion, and personality. Not sure that’s how it is supposed to work.

    It’s McMaster’s race to lose. Maybe he’ll get caught up in some Quinn mess closer to the election… maybe there will be some Trump backlash… but if the economy is still kicking in high gear as it appears to be, Smith will have to do SOMETHING more than talk about Medicaid and school funding.

  2. bud

    The governors’s race has been unusually quiet. I haven’t seen a single poll. Realclear still rates this as safe Republican. That is based entirely on historic voting patterns. On 3-1/2 months til the election. Seems oddly subdued, which is bad for the Democrats. Maybe Brad will shake things up.

  3. JesseS

    5.) My gym partner, a lifelong Clemson fan, brought this one up last night. “You know The State hates Clemson. They’ve always hated Clemson. Just anti-Clemson propaganda. Saw it on TigerNet, since I don’t read The State.”

    I just kinda nodded my head the same way I nod my head when Alex Jones fans defend Trump because I don’t feel like arguing with someone who has drank the kool-aid. Not to mention I’m no authority on The State’s bias against Clemson. I’ll have to ask my gym buddy to send me some white papers on the subject. This conspiracy could run deep. Then again he could be wrong. He has a subscription to The State. I see it in his big, orange newspaper box that’s embossed with The State’s logo and a big ol’ Clemson Tiger paw. Or perhaps The State is engaging in false flag operations involving double secret reverse psychological warfare?

    Either way my thoughts were: “It’s 2018 and we are still doing Ladies Clinics? Isn’t that kinda sexist, especially for a college? That’s should probably get a lot of ‘highly problematic’s. Oh, some guy is doing the Magic Mike bit? Cheesecake for charity, huh? Guess that’s OK. He worked hard for that body. Man, I need to lose this gut.”

    Not that if it weren’t the other way around and if a young woman were ripping her pants off everyone in Littlejohn Coliseum, myself, The State newspaper, and at least 49% of South Carolina’s electorate wouldn’t be “gravely concerned”.

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      Journalists see the same thing with sports fans as with politics.

      Sports superfans are like partisans in politics: If you don’t love their team and write everything about that team as though you were working for the booster club, you “hate their team.” And they despise you, the journalist, for that.

      Ditto with politics. You’re “biased” against their point of view if you don’t share THEIR bias.

      Writing things straight makes a lot of enemies…

    2. Barry

      Tell your buddy the Charleston Post and Courier also wrote a story about the Clemson deal too.

      In 2018, that was in poor taste.

  4. Karen Pearson

    If Helsinki and tariff worries aren’t enough to shake a devout Trumpeteer’s rating standings, I worry that nothing will.

  5. Burl Burlingame

    The DUKWs you see mostly on these tours today aren’t WWII vintage, but built similarly, a welded hull attached to a three-axel truck frame. They can’t handle real waves.

  6. Rose

    If a coach told my kid to walk around in his (or her) underwear and dance in front of fans, I would get medieval on his ass. It is completely inappropriate for ANY coach at ANY school to have STUDENTS do that.

  7. Doug Ross

    Still not seeing anything of interest from the Smith and McMaster campaigns… am I missing something?
    Smith website hasn’t been updated in weeks with anything new except announcing a new campaign manager who previously worked on Hillary’s campaign and also for a gun control group. That’s it.

    Some generic tweets on Twitter from the campaign at small gatherings… surprisingly, Smith and his running mate appear to be working most events together – which kind of comes off weird to me. Normally the person running for the top office is out there on his own showing he’s a leader, not a co-Governor.

    Also, I donated to the Smith campaign a couple weeks ago and have had nothing in the way of communication from the campaign. No request for more money, no new information, nothing.

    It’s hard to believe, but the Smith campaign is even less inspiring than Vincent Sheheen’s. Where’s the energy?

    1. bud

      Not to pile on but I thought the days of waiting until after Labor Day to start a campaign were over. Perhaps I’m just not focused in yet. But isn’t that kind of the point? The Not-Focused voters are the ones Smith needs to reach. I like Smith and I hope he wins but given recent polls showing McMaster with a +20 approval rating it’s no wonder all the major forecasting services rate McMaster either Safe or Likely/Probable. Maybe Brad can send up a coded smoke signal explaining Smith’s strategy.

  8. Doug Ross

    Looks like the Smith campaign shot itself in the foot last week… trying to get the nomination of three other parties (including Libertarian) in order to grab all those votes as well on election day. Except they didn’t realize that if any of those three groups rejected Smith, his name would be removed from the ballot for all parties, including the Democratic Party! A last minute reversal probably saved the campaign from the biggest mistake in SC election history (yes, worse than Alvin Greene). There was no way the Libertarians would nominate Smith – he offers NOTHING that matches the basic principles of the party.

    This was either an act of desperation knowing that a 10 point disadvantage is likely insurmountable or else maybe a huge mistake by a new campaign manager who came in from Indiana and didn’t know the law. Either way, it doesn’t look good.

    Meanwhile, the daily campaign has been silent except for small group meetings or just personal family photos. I’m wondering if Smith REALLY wants to campaign in the way that he would need to in order to overcome a huge gap that already is built in.

  9. bud

    It was a cringe worthy experience watching Smith try to explain the fusion candidate debacle. Hopefully no one is paying attention to the race yet.

    I’ve been paying close attention to the RealClear ratings for the various races around the country. South Carolina’s governor’s race remains “safe” for the Republican (McMaster). So far no polls to support that other than an old poll showing a +20 point approval for Henry. In contrast, the intensely covered GA race has the two major party candidates locked in a tight race and is currently rated as a toss-up. The difference? The Democrats elected Stacey Abrams, a dynamic, appealing candidate who is giving voters an option for voters to voter FOR. Sadly, Smith, for all his likability, leaves most of us Democrats planning to head for the polls to vote AGAINST Henry McMaster. It’s still 3 months til the election. But I’m afraid it’s already too late.

    1. Doug Ross

      He could have at least tried for the Libertarian nomination by offering a few crumbs that Democrats would support: gay marriage, a path to legalizing marijuana, etc. Now he just comes off as looking for scraps on the floor from the other parties.

      I’d really love to know who’s idea it was to pursue that option in the first place…

  10. Doug Ross

    Unfortunately, it appears the Smith campaign is going to make the election about Trump. I was hoping for something more. Using the loss of 126 jobs in Fairfield County as campaign material is pretty weak – especially when you look into the facts about the company that is closing. They were given gift wrapped tax incentives a couple years ago to move into Fairfield County during an election cycle. They promised 500 jobs (where have we heard that before? Oh yeah, with the Richland County Penny Tax ripoff)… and delivered 130. They are suggesting a 4% tariff is the reason they have to shut down — which doesn’t make sense if a company was managed properly. Sounds more like a good excuse came along at the right time.

    Anyway, what could or would James Smith have done as Governor to save those jobs? And why isn’t he doing anything as a legislator to help NOW? Jobs come and go. Smith should be focused on the entire state, not a small group of people who he can use to fit his narrative.

    Clock keeps ticking…

  11. Doug Ross

    Hello? Hello? Testing 1.2.3… Is this thing on?

    Anyone have any comments on the governor’s race with 30 days to go?

  12. Dave Crockett

    It will be interesting if/when Brad returns and gives us an assessment of politics from inside the tent. I miss our little gang.


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