WOLVERINES

1. It’s Wednesday, March 9, 2016.

2. There might have been Beatles without George Martin, but we probably wouldn’t have heard of them. He fostered the creativity that made their work art that’s appreciated 50 years later. And he’s a reminder that great work is a collaboration and rarely solitary. His passing is sad.

3. I was wondering if President Obama would attend Nancy Reagan’s funeral. But he’s not – he’ll keep a commitment made to speak at the South by Southwest Conference in Austin.

It’s not as if this hasn’t happened before. Obama didn’t attend Betty Ford’s funeral, George W. Bush didn’t attend Lady Bird Johnson’s and Bill Clinton didn’t attend Pat Nixon’s. But Clinton did attend Jackie Kennedy’s funeral.

Nancy Reagan won’t be dishonored by Democratic administrations. Michelle Obama and Hillary Clinton will be there. Not sure if Rosalynn Carter will, but she’s in her 90s and might find it hard to travel.

I’m sure Fox News and its friends will get into a lather about this. Maybe that will be this week’s mouth-foaming for these dopes.

4. Michigan is an angry state.

Think about it. Few states have as angry a nickname as the Wolverine State.

It’s always been angry. The first Michigander to emerge on the national scene, Lewis Cass, was a general and an implementer of Andrew Jackson’s Native-American relocation program. He had an STFU attitude on slavery, advocating to let states decide what the hell they wanted.

It’s the home state of Michael Moore and Ted Nugent. Polar political opposites. Same hostile vibe.

That’s what we got last night in the primaries.

On the Republican side, of course Donald Trump won. It’s Michigan. Angry Republicans who sit on a crappy road to work or see their taxes rise because the business base has cleared out are going to think that a guy who comes off as angry as they are will help solve their problems.

On the Democratic side, of course Bernie Sanders won. It’s Michigan. Angry Democrats who’ve watched their jobs go overseas or whose water has been poisoned are going to think that a guy who comes off as angry as they are will help solve their problems.

Trump’s victory was pretty close to what was expected. Sanders’ was a shock. Hillary Clinton was up by 20 points in some polls, and the normally dead-on fivethirtyeight.com site gave her a better than 99% chance of winning.

And yet, she lost. Because it’s just really hard – even in a nation as angry as this one – to fathom how pissed off people in Michigan can get.

That anger is a big problem for the Democrats. A Republican might be able to win the White House without Michigan. It’s much harder for a Democrat. If Clinton is the nominee – and despite last night, she’s still well on track – she absolutely has to find a way to tap into that anger. That her husband’s fingerprints are on trade deals Michiganders blame for their problems doesn’t help.

If it’s Clinton vs. Trump, she has to hit hard on the fact that his businesses benefit from shipping jobs overseas and hiring foreign workers. Relentlessly hard. She has to commit major resources  – if Sanders unites with her at the convention, Michigan is a good place for him to campaign. For God’s sake, don’t send Bill.

I spent three months of my life in Michigan on an internship in college. For my fellow elitists on the East Coast, understand that it’s a beautiful state – once you get past the rusting infrastructure –  and its people are smart and thoughtful.

And angry. Like a wolverine.

Standard

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s