Tom Toles explains the Democratic race in four panels.
I've seen purists and True Believers in both camps, and I am trying very hard to believe they are at the extreme edge and that the bulk of both Bernie and Hillary supporters will hold their noses and vote if their chosen candidate doesn't get the nod.
It seems incredible to me that Democrats would make such a folk hero out of Ruth Bader Ginsburg but then throw a sour-grapes hissy fit, abstain from the general election and allow her replacement to be chosen by whoever emerges from the GOP clown car.
Which ties into the most distressing recent twist in this thing: Thurgood Marshall, the first African-American to sit on the Supreme Court, was appointed by Lyndon Johnson after a stunning, magisterial career as the legal spearpoint of the Civil Rights Movement (including lead counsel on Brown vs The Board of Education), as a federal appeals court judge, and even as an architect of the constitutions of Ghana and Tanzania.
When he retired from the bench, he was replaced by George H.W. Bush with Clarence Thomas, whose qualifications were that he was a Negro with a law degree, and whose actual politics were memorably caricatured on the cover of Emerge Magazine.
It's not as simple as Democrat/Republican: Sandra Day O'Connor, the first woman on the Court, was nominated by Ronald Reagan, and, when she retired, the laughable estrogenized-candidate to replace her, Harriet Miers, while named by George W. Bush (R), was championed by Harry Reid (D).
In that case, both liberals and conservatives were appalled -- including Henry Payne, not noted as a leftist -- and Miers withdrew her name before the farce went any further.
But now the Clinton campaign, if only through surrogates, is rolling out the same political philosophy, with both Gloria Steinem and Madeline Albright demanding that the Woman Candidate must be supported, Steinem insulting young women who prefer Sanders by suggesting they're just trying to meet guys (she has since semi-splained that she didn't mean what she meant), and Albright saying they'll go to hell for voting their consciences and not their genitals.
As I said last week, I doubt the "Bernie Bros" that Clinton's supporters are complaining about exist beyond the numerically insignificant loud-mouthed trolls in any crowd, but Sanders has made his feelings about them clear:
Now young women who support him have been called boy-crazy and cursed to Hell by icons of feminism speaking in favor of Hillary Clinton (and whom I doubt were equally devoted to putting gender above policies when Sarah Palin was running for vice-president).
It's your move, Madame Secretary. Because if you want not just the nomination, but the presidency, you're going to need the support of progressives and liberals who are currently supporting Bernie.
Look, don't take my word for it: After tomorrow's primary here in New Hampshire, I assume you'll be headed for the Carolinas.
Ask the folks down there whether the real goal is to make it to the Big Game or to come home with the Trophy.
Juxtaposition of the Day
Winter in New England has been surprisingly mild, I said, knocking on wood given the month-and-a-half left of it, but I still got a chuckle out of this pair.
A harsh fact about those nice double-hung, weather-proof windows is that they won't pay for themselves, even when fuel prices are high. (And, by the way, to those who locked in a price for fuel oil this fall: Sucks to be you. Oh, you knew that.)
If you have to replace your windows anyway, certainly get the good ones. And if your conscience demands that you save energy at any cost, go for it.
But don't install them to cut your utility bills, because neither you nor they will last long enough for that to pay off. Sweaters are a much better investment.
As for Wiley's take, I'll grant you that your $25,000 Prius, at 54 mpg highway/50 mpg city, should earn back its price over my $16,000 Fit with its 34/41 mpg. Assuming OPEC or somebody regains control of things.
And you don't name it "Brad."
Still, you have to be able to get in and out of your driveway.
Wiley reminded me not of sidewalks but of my driveway in Maine and the best neighbor ever. I'd come home at night on a snowy day, only to find that, while the plows had been through, there was no snowbank across the driveway up to the farmhouse I rented.
Then one day I caught him: The logger across the street had brought his front end loader down to scoop out his own drive and then just popped over and got mine, too.
If his name hadn't been on his mailbox, I wouldn't have known it, and my name wasn't on my mailbox. But we were neighbors.
Sometimes winter isn't so cold after all.
An encouraging trend beyond healthy sales
One of the authors at the CCIRA Conference in Denver was Nathan Hale, who has a popular series of history-based graphic novels for kids. At the end of one day, we got to talking and ended up grabbing dinner together, but that "got to talking" part didn't happen without a little effort and patience on my part.
I wanted to get some time with him, but he had people lined up, if not in massive numbers, consistently enough that I had to let the man do his job.
What was encouraging was not seeing the number of people buying books and having them signed -- he chuckled and admitted he's no Lincoln Peirce or Jeff Kinney -- but that they were adults and that they weren't just adults but teachers and that they were not just teachers but reading teachers and literacy coaches.
And what I found most encouraging of all was that, when I was presenting, I said something about graphic novels and memoirs and the enthusiasm they generate in young readers.
For years, teachers have met that with "at least they're reading something," but the response I got at this break-out session was much less condescending.
We've turned a corner on this: Educators are genuinely embracing graphic novels and memoirs as legitimate literature.