Fifty years ago, yesterday, I voted for the first time. Ever since then I’ve celebrated and today is no different. What is different is I’m not just say ”Go Vote”. Today I’m saying ”Go Vote like the Nation depends on it.”
This time I’m truly worried for the Nation this time. The ’election deniers’, the ultra extremist MAGA who promise that if elected that Republicans will never loose another election have succeeded in scaring me.
So let me say this. Any candidate, for any office, who says the following does not deserve your vote.
The 2020 election was stollen.
I will not except the results where I do not win
That 1/6/21 was NOT an attempted Insurrection.
It is up to everyone who believes in the American Way to totally and completely shutdown this kind of talk and behavior. So please, if you do reject this kind of thought and behavior and have not yet voted, Go Vote!
With the eminent start of early voting I think it is a good day to think about both the election of 2022 and 2024. Let me give some of the reasons I feel it is quite possible for the GOP not to win control of the Senate.
First and foremost Senate election are statewide so gerrymandering districts has no effect and that means primaries don’t decide who will win in the general election. You have to have a candidate who can attract voters out side of the parties base. This is hard to do with the control of the local party apparatus in the control of Trump/MAGA/Q supporters.
The next thing is to look at how much time and interest is being generated about the very local elections. MAGA/Trump/Q blessed candidates are running for a lot of local offices, especially offices that control/run elections. This has been taken notice of and a remarkable amount of effort is going into these local elections. It should be noted that these early, local elections often have very small turnout, in the low 20% all too often. An while that means they are decided by a very small vote it also means that it doesn’t take very many new voters to change the election. That means a relatively small number of none MAGA/TRUMP/GOP voters can make a big difference.
An this bearings me to the next point. The GOP is shrinking. The number of registered GOP voters is getting small. In many cases in actual numbers and not just a percentage. An don’t think the GOP leadership hasn’t taken notice of this. It just maybe one of the reasons the state GOP parties have been doing so much to limit who can and/or will vote. If they thought that the parties appeal was growing and the party was gaining voters they would be much more likely to make voting easier. Another problem facing the GOP is the number of registered Republicans who are totally disenchanted with the way the party is going. There is no easy way to measure this number, especially because of the retaliations inflicted on those that go public. But they are there and their number just maybe significant.
So the key is going to be the candidates. All the non-Republicans have to do is nominate candidates that accentuate the difference between the MAGA/Trump/Q Republican candidates and themselves.
Now lets look at the House Races. Not nearly as easy to define or categorize. Gerrymandering can and does have a significant effect on house elections. But here is the problem facing the GOP in all most all of the House elections. Just because you are a “registered” republican doesn’t mean you will vote for any Republican. In some districts, even gerrymandered districts, a few people will not vote by party affiliation. Also if the Republican candidate is a devout MAGA Republican they will have a harder time attracting independent voters much less Democratic voters.
The worst thing to happen in ‘sure win’ republican districts is for the non-base republicans to ‘stay home’ and for the independent and democratic voters to come out in force. An the state Republican parties, where they are in control of the state, seem to be bound and determined to do what ever they can to upset the non-MAGA base of the Republican Party.
So that’s all for now. Something to watch in the coming months.
NOTE: This was mostly written before the Russian invasion of the Ukraine.
With 56 days till Election Day I thought it would be good to share some positive thoughts. That is why I have Alfred E. Newman on this post. It is also why I’m going to talk about the 2016 election and not the 2020 election in this post. I think we need to remind ourselves just where we are coming from.
First off I want to remind everyone out there that Donald Trump did not win in 2016, Hillary Clinton lost. And in looking back on that she lost should not be much of a surprise to anyone. But that is the problem. Most of the scholars and pundits of Political Science (or just plan Politics) are pretty much at a loss on why or how Donald Trump won. The problem is that they are asking the wrong question. What they need to ask is how did Hillary Clinton lose?
It is not all that hard to understand when looked at in the correct way. We need to remember that Clinton was and still is, one of the most divisive people in our body politic. Almost no one doesn’t have an opinion about her. Starting there, let’s take a look at the campaign of 2016 as if it was a long long foot race.
At the start of the race, Hillary gets off to a good start as all of the Republican contenders keep getting in each other’s way. Until, lo and behold, the one contender everyone thought of as a joke ends up the only one still in the race with all of the others falling down in the dust. And now the fun starts as the clown knows how to keep all the attention on him.
So, now almost no one sees and even few comment on all of the interference that was thrown in Hillary’s way. It’s like no one cares that people in the stands are throwing things onto the track that the leaders have to deal with, which slows her down and lets the challenger creep up. Here I’m talking about the slow drip drip from WikiLeaks and the Russians. Then the way some of the officials acted, by letting the challenger get extra boost by acting totally unfairly in the debates. Several times in all the debates Trump acted in such a way that in any other debate setting he would have been called out. But not in the Presidential Debates of 2016. I’m particularly thinking of the time(s) Trump left his podium to walk around the stage. In any other debate the moderator would have interrupted and directed him to return to his place. Think of this as disruptive as a runner cutting across lanes on the track.
Finally we have the most telling blow. The absolutely wrong action of the FBI in the final weeks of the election and the problem with “Hillary’s e-mails”. Think of this as a track official stepping out onto the track, in the runner’s lane just as the runner is going into their final kick, to warn the spectators not to step out on the track. Then the final point, calling the race for the Trump winner runner because he breaks the tape even though Hillary’s foot crossed the finish line first. When looked at it this way, it is no wonder she lost.
In fact I’m going to go out on a limb here and predict in 20 or 30 years the scholars will be all talking with amazement that Hillary Clinton came so close to winning with everything stacked against her. And that brings me to the positive point I want to leave you with. This is 2020, not 2016. We know what happened back then and we, the American Electorate, are on the lookout for all the dirty tricks that were played and who played them.
We are fortunate that WikiLeaks is no more. Even if we have Q-Anon we know it for what it is. And yes, the Russians are playing the same game as before, but again, we know what to look for. Even the attempt to paint Joe Biden with a broad brush of scandals backfired. It got Donald Trump in the history books as only the third president to be impeached and showed up the Republicans in the Senate to be the spineless lickspittles they are.
So the Impeachment and Trial of Donald John Trump, President of the Unites States of America is over. So what can we expect now?
I am not going to talk about all the bad/dark things we can expect from Pres. Trump, MAGA or the GOP. This is already being discussed by others to ad nauseam. I’m going to talk about what we can do to counter act these actions.
The first thing is to stay positive. While MAGA and Pres. Trump has won this round the game is still on. The second thing is to not only VOTE yourself but to get out the vote of others. Unlike all of the elections I’ve been involved in since 1968 I’m going to say the vote to get out is the anti-Trump, anti-MAGA and anti-GOP. Get out the vote not only in the general election in November but also in your sate primary. Each and Every Vote is critical.
Why I’m saying this is not the usual election rhetoric. This election is the most important I’ve seen since 1968. Democrats need to put forward not only a candidate that represents out ideals but also can lead the way in a great anti-Trump/MAGA/GOP wave. The GOP needs to be shown the error of their ways in not only nominating and then electing this Orange KoolAid but their total lack of ethics and morals in rolling over for him.
What can we need to counter?
There are three thing we, as individual voters need to look out for and can actually be effective apposing.
Alt-Facts: When ever we come upon “Alt-Facts” (aka out right lies”) we need to call them out with actual facts. Don’t forget to cite your sources, this is critical. Yes, I know the MAGA will not be effected but MAGA is not even a majority in the GOP. Who we are doing this for is for the mass of ‘independents’.
Dirty Tricks: This should go without saying but I think it needs to be said. The GOP has been the past masters of Dirty Trick for the last 75 years and they now have a Leader who ‘Openly’ see nothing wrong with them. So it is up to every Voter who truly believes in open and fair elections to call out every instance of a Dirty Trick. It doesn’t mater Right, Left, or center, it is up to us to say we will not stand for Dirty Trick in our elections.
Keep the Faith: America is strong. She has been thru times as tough as this before and come out the other side better for the struggle. MAGA wants you to give up. It wants you to believe that it is too powerful, too Omnipresent, too omnipotent to fail. This is just another lie they tell us to keep us down.
So fear not! All is not lost, not yet. Each and everyone of us who love this country can do our little bit. First and foremost, don’t give into despair for that is exactly what Pres. Trump, MAGA and the GOP want. Next fight back, but fight back smart. As my Dad used to tell me “if you get back up after being knocked down. You have lost the fight.” We lost this round and they think they have us on the ropes. Now is the time to show MAGA and all the Trumpian bullies just what we are made of.
So Can We Do?
As I am a computer ‘geek’ I will start with the problem of the Internet and Social Media. Let’s not wait for the Government nor the big corps to address this problem. I’m calling on all the Techno-Geeks out there to attack the problem our not being able to accurately identify who is actually posting what. Let’s get apps out there that can quickly and clearly identify the ‘true’ point of origin of any posting on Facebook, or Twitter, or eMail.
I am calling on them to create apps that will allow users to identify ‘Deepfakes’ and all the other ways we were manipulated in 2016. We need apps that will prevent the kind of ‘Dirty Trick’ pulled in Iowa this past week. Let’s create apps that will help us counter all the voter suppression tactics so beloved by the GOP this past decade. Need I go on?
Some may say that this is an impossible task. Well, you be surprised on how many “impossible” things I’ve seen done with computers since 1969. So, to all the Techno-Geeks out there I say “Trump and MAGA say it is impossible for anyone to stop their miss information campaign.” I say “Are you going to take that lying down? Are you going to let people who have no idea what is meant by a ‘Sever’ tell you what you can do or not do?”
Knowing that Donald J. Trump is a well known and notorious cheat at the game of golf can help us understand just what can happen once he is not convicted by the Senate. As I have said in an earlier post here golf is one of the easiest, if not the easiest, game to cheat at. I shan’t go into the details here. Here I will address one of the questions I have been hearing, time after time, in the Senate Trial. Even if Pres. Trump did everything he is accused of why shouldn’t we leave it up to the voters in November?
The simple answer is that it is a total certainty that he will CHEAT. He will cheat where he has to and he will cheat where he doesn’t have to. This is what people who cheat at golf do. Why do they do this? I can really answer as I’m not a psychologist but I do have one or two ideas. First and foremost it is just an exercise in power. They are saying “See, I can do it and you can’t. See how powerless you are? You won’t even try to keep me from cheating. Your my bitch.” Another reason is I think they don’t know how to not cheat. It is so ingrained in their character they default to cheating.
I closing don’t get depressed. It is not inevitable that Pres. Trump is going to win re-election come November. Even though we know he is going to be cheating. We have 50 state governments who actually run the election. An even though many of them are run in Toto by the Republicans not all, I dare say even a majority, are so corrupt that they will be willing to go along with his cheating schemes to win the election. Also Trump and his MAGA maybe a majority of the elected GOP they are not a majority of the electorate. An one way to keep the cheating from mattering is to get out the largest vote, in both numbers and percentage of the electorate, ever seen in the history of the Republic.
These are the words that started one of the most famous Agiprop works of mankind, Thomas Paine’s The American Crisis. It was written in the darkest hour of our, the American War for Independence. In December 1776 everything seemed to be going the British way. Boston and New York lost to the British Army and the American army defeated at Harlem Hights and almost totally captured just before escaping across the Hudson River to the wilds of New Jersey (yes, New Jersey had wilds in 1776).
While I know it doesn’t’ sound positive, as promised in my last two postings (the Nightmare twins) I will now write a positive piece this week. Unlike 1776, the United States of America is not in danger of being destroyed. No mater what happens in the 13+ months there will still be a country called the United States of America and it will, most likely, still be the same territory as it is now. What crisis faces us is it will not be the land that I have loved and fought for the past 54 years. We still might have the same written constitution but it will be greatly changed. It just might become just words written on a page, nice to look at but no one takes seriously.
The summer patriot and the sunshine voter may shrink from the call of there country; but he that comes out to the call of our nation and stands with the Constitution and all it stands for will be worthy of the praise of all, man, woman, and child. We now face a open and blatant move by those forces that have never accepted the dream that is the USA. Yes, they mouth the words and wrap themselves in the flag but we know them by their deeds.
They tell us they are Legion and that we are weak and can not win the day. They say that even if we do win the election they will rise up and ‘take the Country back’ with fire and furry. An we have heard this all before, time an again. An it is just like three plus years ago when HE started talking about MAGA (Make America Great Again). It was all advertising gobbledygook signifying nothing. We are now at a time to face the Spam Artist, the Snake Oil Salesmen, the Flim-Flam men and the pyramid scheme artist that we know who and what they are selling. They are trying to frighten us with how great and powerful they are and how weak and helpless we are. They want us to be so scared that we don’t vote.
So they tote out all the old tried and true symbols, like the burning cross on the hill top before Election Day. But now is the time to show just what true love of Country and Our Constitution means. Just like back in the 60’s we need to organize and stand up and say “No, I maybe afraid but I will not be prevented from my right. You will not prevail.” Just because I prefer to be polite that doesn’t mean I don’t no that what MAGA stands for is ”despicable”. I say load a clear that anyone who supports MAGA is Despicable, because they are promoting that which is Despicable. I don’t judge you by your words, I judge you by your actions and the actions of those who you support. If the action is Deplorable, then they are Deplorable. If those you support are Deplorable, then you, by your own willful actions of associations are deplorable.
As Thomas Paine called out in 1776, I call upon all who do not wish to be counted as a Sunshine Patriot to stand up! You don’t need to do much, but it will be hard. An as for some of the most patriotic acts it is quite simple to state but hard to do. Don’t listen to the AltNews flackery. When you read something check up on the source. If you don’t know how, ask for some help (yes I know it is hard to ask for help but you could be surprised by how willing people can be.). My recommendation is don’t accept anything from a self proclaimed think tank. That is more likely as not more option than hard fact. See if you can find the same reported facts from multiple sources across the political spectrum. Then make up your own mind. The one thing the MAGA flack machine fears is the ‘informed’ voter. So get informed and go out and vote. Vote in the primary, if your state has one, or go to your local Caucus, but go. Stand-up and be counted.
Now is the time for all good men & women to come to the aid of their Country!
I have now watched (alright listened) to two of the scheduled Democratic Presidential Candidates debates. Unlike most, if not all, of the talking heads I will not be talking about who won/lost or about the “horse race”. Since 1964, yes that long ago (55 years now), I’ve been more interested in the subject mater (issues) discussed. I want to hear what the candidates are interested in campaigning on.
I really don’t think modern political campaign debates are really debates. This I blame my mother ‘ED’ Daniel a true aficionado of rhetoric and debate. From 1972 till she suffered brain damage in the 2000’s she and I would look upon Presidential election years as a fun time to vivisect candidates on their debate capabilities. I used to tease her that she selected who she would vote for by how well they spoke and debated. She would just laugh and smile. What I wouldn’t give to have her input on these last two debates.
That said, back to the issues brought forward so far. I think there are really only three that have any staying power. I say three, but their is really only two with one have two parts. In no order of preference other than my thought process here goes:
Issue One A: Health Care
From these debates it is clear that what we are going to be doing about healthcare in this country is going to be a major issue in the coming election. 99% of the population has some major concerns about getting and paying for healthcare. Those that have some kind of insurance worry about will they keep it and will it cover what ever happens. Ever since the baby boom Americans have grown up thinking they will get the health care they will need, mostly. It was only the poorest amongst us who had to worry, and they had charity, right?
Who reading this remembers the time before the law(s) making in mandatory for ER’s to accept anyone who shows up? I remember reading the horror story’s in the afternoon paper about dying people being turn away from Hospitals because they could produce an insurance card. It did happen back in the day.
We hear about people who get their insurance thru their union, but less than 10% of the non governmental work force are now union members. Or you get it thru your job, but that means you have to stay steadily employed, not so easy in this new job market. An what about the ever growing group smiling known as ‘Independent Contractors’? I was one, not because I wanted to be but because it was the only way I could find work. An this wasn’t some unskilled labor, I was a programmer aka software engineer. (See Bellow) even if you can keep the contacts coming in so you work steady you still have to buy your insurance. (Also even tho you may get anything from 150%-200% of what a w2 employee gets paid you can have to pay over 100% more in taxes) you still need to buy your own private insurance. If your over 40 this can get very hard.
Issue One B: Healthcare
This is where the rubber meets the road for most of the Democrats, what do we do about it. This is where we all have to be very careful with our words. It is easy to say Medicare for all. But just what does that mean? So far I have found more than two distinct meanings for the slogan and I fear there will be more. In fact I will go out on a limb here and say that “Medicare for All” means exactly what the hearer wants it to mean. More on this later.
Other candidates want to ‘fix’ Obama care. But so far they have all been kind of lite on details. What we do know is that the GOP has no idea how fix Obama care, they tried last congress with came up a cropper.
Issue Two: Who is best to Defeat Donald Trump?
For me this is really a non-issue. The answer is as simple as almost any of them or none of them can. It is that simple. No one really has any clear idea of why Donald Trump ended up being President. Hillary Clinton should have won, she didn’t. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again “It will take at least 50 years before the Historians and Political Scientists will figure it out”. So get over it an go on. The only thing for sure is the Democrats need to get a fighter. It can be a down in “the mud, the blood, and their beer” fighter like Truman. Or it can be an elegant ‘Mohamed Ali‘ dancer like JFK or something totally new. Just someone who knows they are in for the fight of their life with someone who cheats a golf! So it is ‘no holes bard’ and “Winning isn’t the everything, it is the only thing.” Fight.
I have no patience with the people who are worried about the Democrats tearing themselves apart. The Democrats need a fighter who ‘knows’ they are in for the fight of the century.