Angry voters (84% to 13% in favor of the GOP), the economy, and a reaction against the party in power all played a part in the disaster of 2010. But the most important lesson to be learned is that you cannot despise and snub huge segments of the American fabric such as the white working class and expect better results. Indeed, the New York Times recently noted that the losses would have been greater in 2010 save for tactical moves by Obama Dimocrats. That is no way to govern – with tactical schemes to claw together electoral margins of victory.
“According to the National Conference on State Legislatures, Republicans gained about 125 seats in state senates and 550 seats in state houses — 675 seats in total. That gives them more seats than they’ve won in any year since 1928.
Republicans snatched control of about 20 legislative houses from Democrats — and by margins that hardly any political insiders expected. Republicans needed five seats for a majority in the Pennsylvania House and won 15; they needed four seats in the Ohio House and got 13; they needed 13 in the Michigan House and got 20; they needed two in the Wisconsin Senate and four in the Wisconsin House, and gained four and 14; they needed five in the North Carolina Senate and nine in the North Carolina House and gained 11 and 15.
All those gains are hugely significant in redistricting. When the 2010 Census results are announced next month, the 435 House seats will be reapportioned to the states, and state officials will draw new district lines in each state. [snip]
Republicans look to have a bigger advantage in this redistricting cycle than they’ve ever had before. It appears that in the states that will have more than five districts (you can make only limited partisan difference in smaller states), Republicans will control redistricting in 13 states with a total of 165 House districts and Democrats will have control in only four states with a total of 40 districts. You can add Minnesota (seven or eight districts) to the first list if the final count gives Republicans the governorship and New York (27 or 28 districts) to the second list if the final count gives Democrats the state Senate.”
We discussed this Barone analysis before. It bears repeating because it is so significant to our coming discussions on what must be realized and what must be done to stave off endless defeats.
I love Cloris Leachman. She's hilarious in "Young Frankenstein." That's one my folks had on videotape and I grew up on. I saw that thing a million times, I'm sure. And I also watched the Nick at Night reruns of "The Mary Tyler Moore Show." So I was able to love her as Phyllis -- a role that may be her greatest achievement. Phyllis was just so funny. One example, she brings back slides of her trip to the Swiss Alps and Mary's looking at them and says something like, "It's breath taking" and Phyllis responds, "It's those Swiss hairdressers." She always thought every compliment was about her. And who can forget when she's Mary's "assistant" and she ends up working for Ted. And Lou is furious as Ted makes demands for 'this writer everyone's talking about, Truman Capoat.' And Phyliss corrects him that it's "E" (meaning "Capote" -- long "e" at the end of the last name) and Ted says something like, 'Yes, Truman E. Capoat.' She was great as Beverly on "Facts Of Life" and I loved her on "Malcolm In The Middle." She's hilarious on Fox's new "Raising Hope." (I loved it when she went trick or treating.)
But I think my all time favorite Cloris performance is "High Anxiety."
I never had that movie on anything. I always had to wait for it to come on TV to watch it.
And you meet someone and they know High Anxiety -- a Mel Brooks directed comedy -- and it's like you know them, it's like there's a connection.
Sometimes, I'll quote the movie, sometimes I'll quote her from the movie. One time, I was saying, "Drapes," the way she says it in "High Anxiety." No one caught it and I was just being silly when C.I. shot back, "The rate of recovery in the classroom . . ." which is another line Cloris has in "High Anxiety."
We can pretty much quote the entire movie back to one another.
And I finally bought the movie yesterday.
You were my excuse for that.
I'm not joking.
When I was buying DVDs, the only way to get it at my local stores was to buy the Mel Brooks boxed set and while I love a good Mel Brooks film, I don't usually spend over $100 on DVDs in one pop.
So I was doing some of my Christmas shopping on Amazon last night and I thought I'd check to see about "High Anxiety." It's available. For download. I thought, "I never rent online. I should rent so that I can write about what that's like." But the rental cost was $2.99 while the purchase price was $5.99.
Well for three more dollars, I can own it.
So that's what I did.
The technical aspects first.
I played the movie and watched it twice last night. When I tried to download it last night, it wouldn't. I could stream but I couldn't download.
I was afraid to turn the laptop off but finally thought, "Okay, I paid three dollars extra to rent it instead of purchasing it." But then it turns out that it's still there and I did download it today.
So those are the technicals.
Mel Brooks plays the lead in this film -- as well as directing. He's a doctor at a mental institution. He's the head of the institution. The new one. The last one died. Murdered. So Cloris plays Nurse Diesel and she's paired up with Harvey Korman. They plot against Mel Brooks. He goes to San Francisco at one point to deliver a speech and there he encounters Madeline Kahn who is very funny in the movie -- so is Mel Brooks and so is Harvey Korman -- but the film belongs to Cloris Leachman.
She's just wonderful as the evil Nurse Diesel who will not allow you to have your dinner fruit cup if you are even less than a minute late. Nurse Diesel has a little mustache and cone shaped breasts (like Madonna in the 90s).
I love "High Anxiety." It's a comedy and a homage to Alfred Hitchcock and a great deal more.
Going out with C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"