Omaha World-Herald’s Third-Way Nonsense

The Omaha World-HeraldFrom Charlie Pierce I learned that The Omaha World-Herald broke with an 84 year run by endorsing the Democrat, Hillary Clinton Is Prudent Pick for President. But the endorsement is lukewarm at best. And it doesn’t make a lot of sense, to be honest.

The endorsement talks about how people don’t trust Clinton. There’s the email scandal and Benghazi! and (inexplicably) her support for single-payer healthcare. And then they lay on the good ol’ third-way line. “If Secretary Clinton is elected, Americans will need her to be a uniting president, working from the center, and not advancing an agenda that will further alienate moderates and conservatives.” I despair for our nation!

That’s where they leave the endorsement. But how exactly is Clinton moving to the center going to help? One reason people don’t trust her is that they think she talks populist to the people, but when alone with the banks, she’s her real plutocratic self. So if Clinton governs the way The Omaha World-Herald wants her to, it will prove that the people saying she’s duplicitous were right.

Omaha World-Herald Does Care About Trust

The truth is that the editors at The Omaha World-Herald are endorsing Clinton but they want the world to know that they expect her to be a Republican.

And that just shows that this conservative newspaper isn’t at all concerned about Clinton being trustworthy. They know that Clinton is as trustworthy or more than any other politician. This is just a way for them to call for Clinton to do what all the conservatives and third’way pseudo-moderates call on Democrats to do: move right!

Of course, I’m very used to this kind of nonsense. What most bugs me is this idea that somehow Clinton could be a “uniting president.” Obama tried very hard (and for far too long) to be a uniting president. And all that happened was that the Republicans rejected it. If Obama moved to the right one step, they moved to the right two. And the new, more extreme, conservative position was duly disseminated to the Republican base.

We Democrats have spent the last 35 years trying to find common ground with the Republicans. And all that has happened is that the country has gotten more and more conservative. Wages have stagnated, even while corporate profits have steadily increased. More people than ever are jailed, most effectively having their lives ruined. Aid to the poor has been savagely cut.

Just More Third-Way Nonsense

Yet Hillary Clinton is supposed to work “from the center.” And who exactly is this supposed to make happy anyway? The one remaining moderate Republican who is on life-support in an unnamed hospital in the great Omaha area? Certainly the Trump base (AKA: the Republican base) isn’t interested in some kind of third-way, corporate-friendly policy. Unless she starts calling Mexicans rapists, I don’t see her winning over this group.

Right now, FiveThirtyEight estimates that she will beat Donald Trump and Gary Johnson combined. And remember: Johnson is taking as many votes from Clinton as he is from Trump. So where exactly does The Omaha World-Herald get this idea that the onus is on her to reach out to conservatives? Nowhere.

The truth is that the editors at The Omaha World-Herald are endorsing Clinton but they want the world to know that they expect her to be a Republican. Anything else will be her fault. Damn all the liberals who support her. The Omaha World-Herald’ editors must be mollified! It’s too embarrassing to support the nominee who is a perfect reflection of the party they’ve supported these last 84 years. But you can expect more editorials over the next few years where they complain about how Clinton has failed because she didn’t united the country. And what they will mean by that is: didn’t do what they wanted.

Odd Words: Bumboat

BumboatWe reach the end of the B words on page 34 of The New York Times Everyday Reader’s Dictionary of Misunderstood, Misused, and Mispronounced Words: Revised Edition. And I’ve picked a simple enough word: bumboat.

Other Words for Sale on My Bumboat

Page 34 featured two related words that are no doubt of use to readers of The New York Times: Bundestag and the Bundesrat. They are the legislative houses of the German government. From what I know (And I’m certain one or more of you all will correct me if I’m wrong!) the Bundestag is more like our House of Representatives and the Bundesrat is more like our Senate. But the Bundesrat is more like the Senate before the Seventeenth Amendment. That is to say: its members are not directly elected by the people but rather appointed by the state governments.

Disgusting Biology

One word I didn’t know may surprise you: bung. It is “a plug or stopper for the hole in a wooden barrel.” I certainly knew the coarse word “bunghole,” which I assume is derived from it. It is a marvel that for a great many people, the anus never loses the fascination that it held when they were children. I, of course, find almost everything about the human body disgusting. Really: observe yourself while you’re eating some time. You’ll quickly conclude that eating should be done in private and with great shame.

Thirty white horses on a red hill
First they champ,
Then they stamp,
Then they stand still.

But enough of such talk. Let us move to bumboat!

Bum·boat  noun  \bəm’-bōt\

1. a small boat used to ferry provisions to ships lying in harbor.

Date: late 17th century.

Origin: apparently from the Dutch word bomschuit, which some sources say means “small fishing boat.” However, I can’t find that word defined anywhere. The Dutch word schuit means “boat.” So I suspect that bomschuit is slang or jargon.

Example: Now it seemed the bumboat was returning to her best customer. —Hal Weidner (Heart of War: A Descent into Darkness)