Bob and Chez Show

The Bob & Chez Show Presented By 2/11/16

Bob and Chez
Written by Bob and Chez

RELM_buttonWhite Privilege: The Oregon Standoff is Over; Cliven Bundy and Other Militiamen Arrested; The Brainwashing of My Dad; The Intersection of the Far Left and Far Right; Activist Bernie Supporters Planning to Disrupt the Dem Convention; Superdelegates; The Underpants Gnome Business Model; Bernie Criticizes Obama's Leadership; and much more. Brought to you by Bubble Genius, the Amazon Link and The Bowen Law Group.



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  • cddb

    Can you guys explain why you think Republicans will be more likely to let Hillary get her agenda through, as opposed to Bernie?

    We’re facing unprecedented Republican intransigence, we know about Obama derangement syndrome, and we know Republicans hate Hillary more than life itself. With those things considered, I honestly can’t understand why anyone thinks Hillary has a BETTER chance of getting her agenda through?? Can Bob and Chez explain this thought process?

  • “put the system on trial”?
    “(because they’re upset about super delegates) … been going on for like 30 years – how does that work”?

    That’s a big part of the problem, guys. “The System” is what a lotta people are turning against. They (me included) don’t wanna be triangulated again. We don’t wanna be sucked into that “3rd way” crap again. Etc etc etc.

    It’s a real good idea to maintain a healthy distrust of power.

    How “the establishment” deals with Americans’ inherent distrust of “the establishment” is kinda what got this whole joint started in the first place. You seem to be arguing that the Democratic Party establishment is OK because it’s the establishment.

    What I hear Bernie saying is that he represents Democrats better than whatever it is the NeoLiberals (like Hillary Clinton) have turned the Democratic Party into over the last 30 years, so even as an Independent, he’s more of a Democrat than the Democrats, and he’s got fuck-tons of people agreeing with him. That’s called “customer feedback” – you dismiss it at your peril.

    That said: As always – I’m with Bernie until or unless it comes time to go with Hillary. The only thing worse than either Bernie or Hillary is any of those jagoffs on the GOP side.

    • Scopedog

      Mike, here is the problem–a lot of people on Bernie’s side are howling how Hillary is “the Establishment” and pounding that point home….but they’ve missed one very, very obvious point.

      “The Establishment” hates Hillary. And it’s been going on 20+ years now. As for the “third way” and “triangulation”…well, that’s pretty much in the dustbin of history, at least since 2000 (because we sure as s**t didn’t have it with Bush II) and Obama hasn’t done that at all.

      And why the fuss now? Why not when Bush II was in the White House? Yes, I’m aware of the anti-war movement against the invasion and occupation of Iraq (I took part in a march myself), but the fact is that Obama has made things better for this country–and he never promised us a rose garden.

      Oh, and Bernie doesn’t have a “f**k-ton” of people agreeing with him. And if Hillary is a “Neo-liberal”–BTW, what the hell does that even mean today?–then so’s Obama, since I’ve heard that charge leveled at him.

      BTW, I’m not saying this to slam Senator Sanders. He’s a good man, but I’m more about pragmatic change–which is what has been going on for the past seven years under Obama. And I’m disgusted by Sanders taking on Cornell West as a surrogate, since West has been spewing out the most vile–and yep, one can call it racist–claptrap against Obama since 2009.

      But with all of what I mentioned before….if Bernie is the nominee, he is getting my vote. Both he and Hillary will still be miles–no, f**k it, light years–ahead of the GOP have on deck. I just wish that more Sanders supporters would send more broadsides at the GOP’s way, because, let’s be blunt–Hillary is NOT a Republican. She is nothing like them.

      (And for that matter, Obama isn’t a Republican either. I know you never mentioned that, and I’m not trying to put words in your mouth. It’s just that I’ve heard that bulls**t accusation coming from the Left too many damned times and I’m sick and tired of it.)

      • Victor the Crab


      • Several things to unpack here.
        The “establishment” I was mainly referring to is the Dem Party establishment, not the wingnut loonies on the right (shit – those knuckleheads hated Eisenhower – of course they hate Hillary). Hillary is nothing if not the establishment candidate.

        The “triangulation” and “3rd way” I’m talking about is what Bill Clinton was doing in the 90s. “Using conservative methods to further a liberal agenda”. Some of which was pretty decent and moved things along, but much of which turned out pretty bad (at least not as well as cheerily intended at the time).

        Neo-Liberal: Still left of dead center, but basically a John Lindsay (or Poppy Bush, pre-Reagan) republican. Reasonable – pro-choice, pro-social safety net etc, but a little too anxious about being called “soft” on crime or military; and above all, never ever wanting to be called anti-business. So they tend to over-compensate (voting for the Iraq war comes to mind on that one) and they end up getting too cozy with big money, and “market-based solutions” like privatization of schools, etc.

        Hillary may be the better candidate for the general election, and if she’s the nominee, I’ll vote for her. In the meantime, support for Bernie is what pulls the whole system closer to the middle of the road where it belongs. Checks and Balances, baby.

      • cddb

        Yes, Obama and Hillary have both pursued neo-liberal policies. If you’re unclear what that means, looking into it further may help shed light on why many progressives feel so passionately about Bernie’s positions! 🙂

        Also: “the establishment” does not “hate Hillary”. Republicans hate Hillary; the Democratic establishment endorses Hillary.

  • katanahamon

    That’s, that’s it. I’ve had it with the Bernie supporters. Just tell me. How big is bernie’s unicorn? Does Bernie’s unicorn have a gold horn, or natural bone? Does Bernie’s unicorn have speckles, or a solid white coat? Is it related to Donald Trump’s unicorn? I need to know so I can recognize which one of them it is flying in to Washington shooting rainbows out of their butt to magically enchant the “system” and get all these terrific things done!

  • katanahamon

    Also, listeners and commenters here should go over to Salon..major “Bernie is being screwed” article..Or articles…needing some perspective commentary. Can’t wait for the next show guys, now we’ve heard the debate…good luck!

    • Victor the Crab

      I can’t imagine what it’s like over at Kos.

      • Scopedog

        All I can say about that is, “Abandon hope, all ye who enter here”.

  • katanahamon

    Chez, if you listen to around 35:11, you have a Dan Bidondi confuse-speak moment…made me smile!

  • Wayne Villeneuve

    Stop calling it Fox “news”. Call it False News or Fox Views or GOP TV because it is NOT anything vaguely resembling news.

  • Honored by the shout-out guys!

    • Scopedog

      You earned it, Matt. That was a great piece you wrote, no question about it.

  • Badgerite

    Anyone who claims that winning New Hampshire ( New Hampshire has 4 electoral votes ) validates the idea
    of a “revolution” in the making is not paddling with both oars. If Bernie Sanders actually thinks that way ( and by that way I mean not realistic but engaging in grandiose assessments of events ) he is not someone I would want to be president. His attacking Obama just makes that more so. Even Senator Leahy is not supporting him and you can see why. Anyone can and many candidates do “support” positions that resonate. The trick is actually getting those things done in our system. We are not a dictatorship. We deal in consensus. This, of course, is why Bernie Sanders has to attack Obama. To claim that he could build a consensus where Obama could not. That is a bunch of hooey, of course. The problem about “getting more people involved in the system” ( his magical thinking solution to consensus building) is that people have lives to live and don’t find policy issues that interesting unless they can relate that to their lives. The enthusiasm of the young will fade as life happens. Bernie Sanders can count on no more support later than he has now and I’m guessing way less over time. And then he has to deal with the people who do make policy issues their lives. The Leahys, etc. And McConnells. And the Paul Ryans. etc. And they are not about to care about some kids “action alerts”.

    • Scopedog

      I read an article from a Sanders supporter claiming that Obama more or
      less just hopped on the train as it reached the station on that one.

      Jesus Christ….and yet they feel that saying crap like this will make Obama supporters “feel the Bern” and come over to their side?

      • Badgerite

        Seriously. If you take away those three appointees to the Court and imagine Romney appointees, Doma is still the law of the land. DADT as well and there is no marriage equality ruling even though all of the lower District Courts and Appeals Court and a majority of the public thinks there should be. Obama actually was a fierce advocate. He just played his cards for win rather than for glory.
        When Sanders disses him as a way to diss Clinton he absolutely loses me.
        And I was already skeptical because I don’t think ideologue have their priorities straight no matter where they fall on the political spectrum.
        I think Obama has done an exceptionally good job during exceedingly difficult time. He managed to pull the economy and the country back from the brink while the GOP threw garbage at him. It is offensive as shit to have that garbage being thrown at him from the left as well.

        • Scopedog

          And I was already skeptical because I don’t think ideologue have their
          priorities straight no matter where they fall on the political spectrum.

          Yep. It’s a hard lesson that history has taught us time and time again, but we still forget it…

    • captkurt

      Exactly. New Hampshire is no microcosm of the entire US. When I hear cries of “After New Hampshire, Hillary is done for!”, I cannot help remembering an anti-vax article I read a while back, wherein the writer claimed the results of a study done in New Hampshire provided an alternative to what health officials in California were saying about an outbreak there. Because, of course, there are no significant differences between California and New Hampshire.

  • muselet

    The detail that makes the end of the Freeloader Militia’s Battle of the Gift Shop even more derpy is that Sean Anderson had an American flag in his hand as he surrendered. The federal government isn’t legitimate, the states are sovereign, but by gawd! they lurve the good ol’ Yew Ess Ay! Who ties these people’s shoelaces for them?

    Based on his behavior, David Fry may very well be mentally ill. As much as it pains me to do so, I have to give kudos to Michele Fiore, the batshit-crazy representative from Nevada, who talked Fry down.

    As for Cliven Bundy, very few things have made me smile as much as hearing that he’d been arrested.

    My dad, rest his soul, was a Democrat, but was pretty much center-Right when I was growing up. The older he got, the more he leaned Left—I think the Rs’ despicable treatment of Barack Obama was the last straw—and once he decided to try that internet thing I kept going on about, and found Talking Points Memo and Bob Cesca’s Goddamn Awesome Blog! Go! (as I keep saying, that’s still how I have it bookmarked) and BBC News and Kevin Drum and other reality-based sites, he ended up center-Left-verging-on-Left. Honestly, I don’t think Fox News Channel would have had much of an effect on him because he didn’t watch TV much—the network news followed by Jeopardy! was about it for him—but beyond that, he had a pretty effective bullshit detector. It also helped that he didn’t have cable.

    I thought Matt Osborne’s analysis (“On Our Inevitable Disappointment With Bernie Sanders“) was brilliant. Unsurprisingly, Bernie Sanders fans showed up in droves—well, one drove, anyway—to moan about it.

    Bob, every four years, whichever D is behind has whinged about superdelegates. That’s not at all a new phenomenon. Frankly, the superdelegate system really does make for a messy, not entirely (little-d) democratic process, but the Democratic Party believes, quite rightly, that it has a stake in the outcome of that process.

    Do the folks behind USUncut understand what happened in Seattle in 1999 or Chicago in 1968 or Baltimore in 2015? In case they don’t and are reading this, what happened was the revolutionaries got their arses kicked and their heads busted. They might as well put out an ACTION ALERT (oy gevalt) saying they planned to get thrashed and arrested, then ignored.

    “Fill in those blanks.” I’m right there with you, Bob.

    There are times I think Bernie Sanders does not occupy the same reality as the rest of us. When he complains about how Barack Obama hasn’t unified the nation is one of those times (this is another).


  • MrDHalen

    Wow, I have not been following the podcast lately, but I was disappointed to hear from Bob & Chez that level “Don’t Rock The Boat” attitude towards our current political environment. I am a Bernie supporter. Been a President Obama support, President Clinton supporter and a Secretary Clinton supporter. They are all my fellow Democrats, and I will vote for whoever the Democratic nominee is this November.

    I will say this. Everyone on here commenting that ALL Bernie supporters are looking for unicorns, Berniebots, a millennial, naive about politics or our system of government, don’t know how to count delegates, are Emoprogs, or white. You are wrong, because I am none of those things you feel the need to call me. Bernie can’t deliver his platform word-for-word. No president can, because that’s not how are system works. If all my fellow Democrats have given up hope of getting control of money in our political system and have moved to the “that’s just how it is”, then we are truly in trouble.

    • muselet

      I agree, it’s not fair to dismiss a political candidate because of his/her supporters.

      However, Bernie Sanders has been notably vague on how he’s going to accomplish all the things he wants to do. Free college, universal healthcare, breaking up the big banks, reining in the influence of money in elections? Great ideas. How does Sanders propose to achieve his goals?

      Therein lies the problem. Sanders has never really explained the how, and his noisier followers insist that doesn’t matter.

      I have a decade or so on both Bob and Chez, and I’ll cheerfully compare my Lefty cred with pretty much anyone’s, but I had the idealism beaten out of me years ago. How? is the most important question I think a candidate—and his/her surrogates—can be asked, and if the answer relies on wishful thinking or a fundamental change in human behavior, well, that candidate can safely be ignored, even—or even especially—if his/her positions align with mine.

      I can’t speak for either Bob or Chez. They can defend themselves just fine without me. Yes, I think they can be a bit too hard on Sanders supporters, and yes, I think they try a bit too hard to be hard-nosed about the realities of politics (and their take on Millennials is condescending and too getoffmylawn! for my tastes). But they aren’t the problem.

      The Rs are the problem.

      And infighting among Lefties/progressives/liberals/Democrats only helps the Rs.


      • MrDHalen

        I have been following these guys for years as well and my comment was meant to have them raise their game BACK above where it is now as far as Bernie supporters go. The same goes for some of the commentators on this site. I have engaged thoughtfully with many of them over the years. I know they are better than this. Many of us found this site to be a safe place to discuss the 2008 election when Obama was said to be all “Hope & Change” and no substance and Clinton was the “Logical” pick for us. I guess some people can change into what they found distasteful over the course of 8 years. I will not trash the Clinton supporters, because I respect those who have come to the conclusion that she is our best option. We’re Democrats! Most of us if we’re even bothering to follow the election right now, have put some thought into our choice.

        In short, I have been on this site for a lot of years. Anyone else who has as well, raise your game and don’t cheapen your opinions with name calling.

        As for Sanders explaining how we would get his platform enacted, the answer is people. WE have to make it happen. If Democrats are honest with themselves. Over the last 40 years, we’ve been winning the social battles and losing the financial ones. The number of rich people who own more than half the country continues to get smaller. We keep seeing our elected officials go to Washington as members of the middle-class only to come out a few years later as multi-millionaires. That’s on both sides of the isle. Bernie can’t change that by himself. No president could, but he is bringing it the focus and attention it needs. People said we could not elect a black President at that time and Obama said “Yes We Can”. People say we can’t confront money in our politics/governance at this time and Sanders says “Yes We Can”.

        • muselet

          I don’t disagree.

          I’m less annoyed than Bob and Chez by the True Believers among Bernie Sanders supporters, because every campaign attracts those. I get the feeling their irritation is largely because the noisier Sanders supporters are Millennials and a Millennial once kicked their dogs or something (and they seem to forget they too were once callow youngsters with unrealistic expectations of politics).

          It’s okay—even expected—for a candidate who’s promoting incremental change to be vague on the details. A candidate like Bernie Sanders, who is campaigning as a transformational—even revolutionary—candidate, can’t get away with hand-waving; he has to do more than declare that something can be done to convince people who aren’t already convinced. Again, what Sanders has said makes all kinds of sense, but he doesn’t say how he’ll achieve his goals and that makes me wonder if even he knows (the next President will almost certainly be facing an R-controlled Congress which will be adamantly opposed to any D proposal).

          If Sanders is the D nominee, I’ll support him. Ditto Hillary Clinton. I daresay that’s true of every regular on this site, even the ones who are being rude (and yeah, they should tone it down). The alternative is one of the guys from the clown car, and nobody wants that.


          • MrDHalen

            I can see why Bob and Chez are annoyed with the True Believers, because they tend to annoy anyone who is not one of them. I imagine they get a lot more of it than I do since they are public figures. This is happening with both camps, but young people spouting off in your face when you know how little they actually know can be more than annoying. I get where the guys are coming from, but just hope they can be a little more accepting of us non True Believers/Millennials who are Bernie supporters.

            I give Sanders and Clinton a pass on telling exactly how they will implement their platforms, because presidents don’t really get to decide that. Congress is going to write our laws and Sanders or Clinton will execute or enforce them. If they were in Congress proposing bills, I would then expect a lot more details. President Obama wasn’t on the campaign stump laying out how ACA works, but he brought “Healthcare Needs to Change” to the forefront. I like Bernie because he is bringing “Money” and the problems it causing to the forefront. He is starting the conversation way out in left field and the incremental change that comes this time around will be far better than starting the conversation right next to where we currently are. Clinton will face the same R-controlled Congress as Bernie would. It is really frustrating to hear her say I am going to do incremental changes by starting the conversation from right here. To make it simple, if Bernie says he wants 10 and gets 5, we got 5. If Clinton says she want 3 and gets 1, I’m going to do better with Bernie.

            If Clinton is our nominee, I’ll be completely fine with it. I won’t expect much to change over the next 4 years though. We may shore up or gain some seats on the supreme court, but I don’t see much else changing. 2020 is going to be vital for the Democrats, because it is vital we clean up the congressional maps from the 2010 catastrophe. There is a populace movement growing in this country, because people are running out of options. One side is going to tap into it and I hope it is ours. If Clinton wins and does nothing to really address income in this country, she could be out in 4 years and we could have a crazy right-wing populace president in her place.

    • Christopher Brannon

      This. Pretty much all of it. This was as unpleasant a podcast to listen to as anything I’ve heard since I stopped hate listening to right wing radio. I have heard every podcast since Bob and Chez number 1 and read Bob’s stuff long before that, but I don’t think I can do it anymore. Somebody wake me when this stupid primary is over.

      • MrDHalen

        Bob and Chez are good guys and I can understand their frustration with people who become to tribal and rude with their desire to convert people to their beliefs. I don’t have a problem with calling out people like that, but I don’t like broad brush painting entire groups of people.

        I will continue to follow these guys, because they make me laugh, think, and comfort in knowing I am not alone in much of what I see in the world. So hang in there or come back after the primary.

      • cddb

        I agree. They recently turned some corner into full-on Bernie attack mode. According to Chez, those militia standoff people are “just like 90% of Bernie supporters.”. Wow. Yeah, like a majority of New Hampshire Democrats. And half of Iowa. Classy guys!

    • “Bernie can’t deliver his platform word-for-word. No president can, because that’s not how are system works.”

      Chez referenced my 4,000-word article on this very point in the podcast. Disappointment is a normal part of any presidency because all presidents fail to deliver 100% of what they promise, and furthermore all presidents are elected by voters who project more on their candidacy than any president could possibly deliver. I’m glad to see that you agree with me on this fundamental point, because the comments on the post are full of rabid Sanders partisans accusing me of defeatism, secret Republican leanings, and worse when all I’ve done is lay out the roadmap showing where disappointments lie ahead. To what degree they will hurt him, the Democratic Party, or America are questions I leave open. As I say in the first sentence, “This is not an endorsement of Hillary Clinton.”

      Just as I took pains to not use an overly-broad brush then, I won’t do that here, either. You’re obviously a reasonable person who’s made a rational choice to support a candidate, and I won’t say you’re wrong. In fact, I encourage you to support Bernie 100%, give him your time and money and energy, and work hard to elect your candidate. Please do! And here’s the thing: nobody is saying you shouldn’t do that. We’re *skeptical* of Sanders, but that’s not the same thing as opposing him, or you.

      • MrDHalen

        I’m skeptical of Sanders as well. I’m skeptical of Clinton and any politician. If Sanders makes Clinton a better general candidate, then we all win. If Clinton makes Sanders a better general candidate, same thing! That is what we hope for in a primary.

        • The primary is improving *both* candidates, and that is indeed a good thing.

  • katanahamon

    Right on, guys! Hillary should come out and say “you know, I’d love to promise you free college, free health care, etc etc, but, I’d like to make things clear. Promising the moon to gain your vote is disingenuous..and, accusing me of not being “left” enough is simply not reflective of the fact that I too would relish free college, free health care and all the things a great society should have, but these things take planning, courage, time and above all, COOPERATION AND COMPROMISE. I have to promise things I think I can reasonably deliver, and keep higher goals in mind. If Bernie thinks he’s going to deliver these things, especially given the fact that his plan seems based on wishful thinking, then his campaign is being deliberately misleading in what he can deliver.”

  • Villemar

    I think I’ve honed it down even further. The first isn’t just Vote for Bernie…it’s a hashtag.

    1. #FeelTheBern
    2. ???????
    3. Progressitopia!

  • ProudLiberalAlways

    I totally agree with Victor on all points. Maybe we’re all brainwashed, too! s! The biggest thing about Bernie for me is he was a legislator for the entirety of Pres. Obama’s terms—–he must have amnesia! And even though the rethuglicons massive obstructionism was consequential, Pres. Obama got a TON of good things accomplished. I can promise you, Bernie will be no more successful than that. Oh, and everything he (Bernie)says he WILL do, he CAN’T do. Not without some institutional changes happening, first.

  • Victor the Crab

    One of your better podcasts you guys. I don’t know if this means we’re all starting to think alike (which is scaring me out thinking it!), but I always use the Underpants Gnome Business Model when I think about how Bernie Sanders’ supporters believe he and they can achieve their governmental utopia.

    And as far as Sanders is concerned, I’ve tried not to attack him whenever his supporters go Chris Crocker on YouTube when someone like Chez writes columns about his actual chances. But after shitting all over President Obama, fuck that guy! Forget how he’s basically doing the Republicans’ dirty work, Sanders is accusing one of the more liberal presidents America’s had in awhile for not being liberal enough for his liking, and that he can do a far better job of making his liberal goals a reality as president, all while acting clueless as to how difficult it was for Obama to get his legislation through in the first place, like Obamacare. Good luck getting any Democratic delegates, regular and super, on your side after that, Bernie. You’ll be toast come early next month.

    • drspittle

      Agreed, Victor.

  • I love how the Berniebots have already written their own “stabbed-in-the-back” myth.

    • muselet

      The dolchstoßlegende (or its equivalent) does seem to be irresistible.


      • It’s worth noting that the “stab in the back” was in some ways a product of the endless German propaganda that constantly assured the people they were on the cusp of victory. The war was going great until it suddenly wasn’t, and the shock effect was still unexplained when Hindenburg used that phrase, which Karl Helfferich had written. Nowadays we’d say it was perfect for a bumper sticker — an easy little slogan that explained everything, even though it actually explained nothing.

        Furthermore, the “stab in the back” was related to the doctrine held by all combatants that willpower alone could overcome material deficits. Germany was particularly captured by this notion, as there was so much the country did not have that it desperately needed (oil, cotton, food, etc). Meanwhile, the United States turned over its immense industrial capacity to give the Entente allies everything they needed to prosecute the war.

        Why is this relevant to our discussion? Because willpower alone will not defeat delegate math. Enthusiasm, or the lack thereof, will only get a candidate so far. And when things don’t work out according to the hopes and dreams of the most dedicated partisans, they always fall back on conspiracy theories. Always. It never fails.

        • Scopedog

          And when things don’t work out according to the hopes and dreams of the
          most dedicated partisans, they always fall back on conspiracy theories.

          Yep. It always happens. A sad but very true element of the human condition.