America The World is Fucked
09 November 2016
In a stunning upset, Republican Donald Trump has won the Presidential election. Just thought I'd throw that out there in case you've been hiding somewhere since yesterday morning. I almost wish someone would find evidence that Russian hackers got into the electronic voting system and handed Trump the election. That would be easier for me to swallow than to think that enough of my fellow Americans voted for this bigoted despot to make him President.
The Electoral College
While Democrat Hillary Clinton won the popular vote, Donald Trump managed to get the necessary Electoral College votes to secure the office of President of the United States. So, what this amounts to is that Hillary Clinton won the election, and the Electoral College appointed Donald Trump to office. Keep in mind that the same thing happened in 2000, when Al Gore won the popular vote and lost the Electoral College, making George Bush President.
The Electoral College was a passably good idea when it was introduced over two hundred years ago, when the population was spread out over large areas and it took days to get to a polling place to cast your vote and make your mark (my way of pointing out that most of the voters were uneducated at that time). With our vastly superior connectivity, electronic voting, early voting, mail-in ballots, and near-instantaneous vote counting nationwide the Electoral College is a dinosaur whose time has passed. We are able to count the popular vote nationwide within mere hours after the last polls close and determine who has won with very little margin of error (extremely close races — like those which would warrant an automatic recount — notwithstanding). We don't need a whole different group of people deciding who becomes President when we have the ability to more accurately assess the wishes of the American voters.
Hillary Blew It
The closeness of the popular vote was clearly a deciding factor in the outcome of this election. The fact that Clinton got huge majorities in solidly blue states means little as she lost by handfuls in all-or-nothing states that ended up going to Trump (that's another issue with the Electoral College — lose the popular vote by 1000 votes out of millions cast and all of the Electoral votes for that state go to your opponent — except in Maine and Nebraska). Clinton and her campaign should have worked harder to eke out all the votes they could. This election shouldn't have even been close, not with Trump as her opponent.
The first point to be made here is the whole email fiasco. She made a stupid decision years ago and Trump and the Republicans (and, perhaps, even FBI Director Comey) managed to parlay that mistake into a huge issue which added to her perception as being untrustworthy and not suitable for office. Despite the FBI deciding that no charges are warranted (twice) and that there is no evidence of any intentional wrong-doing on Clinton's part (after two investigations) there were still Trump supporters holding up "Hillary for Prison" signs. The FBI found that there were no classified documents compromised as a result of Clinton using a personal email server, yet the Republicans kept stating publicly that she put our nation's security at risk. And Trump supporters ate it up and spat it back out to sway any undecided voters who didn't hear the truth or were unable to fully understand what it meant. Remember, the one demographic that the Republican party can pretty much rely on is uneducated white males.
Secondly, the Russian-backed hacking of the DNC's emails showing conclusively that there was a conspiracy to ensure that Hillary Clinton beat Bernie Sanders for the Democratic nomination. There have been many arguments made that Sanders could have beaten Trump in the General Election. The polls certainly showed it during the primaries. Of course, those are the same polls that showed Clinton beating Trump in the General Election. Rather than Sanders supporters simply moving their support to Clinton, this debacle alienated many of them from the Democratic Party. Add to this the Third Party spoilers Gary Johnson (Libertarian) and Jill Stein (Green Party) giving former Sanders supporters someone to vote for other than the two major party candidates and you have a recipe for handing an unearned election result to Trump.
Obamacare became a hot last-minute issue as major premium hikes were announced just days before the election. One more ACA promise made by Obama that ended up being broken. This likely turned many still-undecided voters towards Trump. The blame for this lies at the feet of Obama for pushing the ACA through as is (and making promises about it that were broken) and Clinton for not acknowledging it's drawbacks and instead supporting it completely.
The American Voter Is An Idiot
I read an article back in August that explained why Trump had already won. The article appeared on The Huffington Post and was written by Michael Rosenblum. In it he points out that The History Channel went from airing WWII documentaries to showing Pawn Stars and Swamp People, The Discovery Channel started showing Naked and Afraid, and The Learning Channel started showing My 600-lb Life.
Where we used to enjoy shows like Planet Earth we now watch Honey Boo-Boo, Toddlers in Tiaras, Teen Mom, and Ancient Aliens. At least The Science Channel still shows How The Universe Works, next to NASA's Unexplained Files. And Fox — who also broadcasts Fox News, the only "news" corporation I know of that has actually gone to court to protect their right to tell lies and pass them off as the news — showed the new Cosmos on their affiliate channels, very surprising.
One can argue all day long about how the American voter is tired of the "Establishment" and wants someone from outside typical party politics. Or how Trump's bigoted, misogynistic, racist, hate-filled, handicapped-mocking personality is what the people really want. But it all really boils down to one thing: the American public is fucking stupid and this is why Trump won the election. (Some may argue with me that because Clinton won the popular vote, the American voting public as a whole isn't stupid. That's a valid point, but it's stupid enough to allow the Electoral College to appoint Trump. Clinton should have run away with the election. Never — to a thinking mind — has there been a clearer choice for President, of two bad choices, that is.)
Trump Is A Fucking Moron
Think about it. Why else would the American people elect a bigot, a misogynist, a racist, a science-denier? Or I should just say, "Believe me!"
Trump on Mexicans: "They're bringing in drugs, they're bringing crime, they're rapists." "For many years, Mexico's leaders have been taking advantage of the United States by using illegal immigration to export crime and poverty in their own country." This guy actually said he'd make Mexico pay for a 2000-mile long wall between our countries.
On a woman's right to choose: "Public funding of abortion providers is an insult to people of conscience at the least and an affront to good governance at best." Abortion-related services account for only 3% of Planned Parenthood's total services. The federal portion of Planned Parenthood funding is provided by Medicaid and Title X. Title X prohibits federal funds from being used for abortion-related services, so none of that money is funding abortions. The 1977 Hyde Amendment restricts the federal portion of Medicaid — much of which is state money, anyway, not federal — to only fund abortions in which the life of the mother is at risk, or in cases of rape or incest.
On foreign relations: "Don't tell me it doesn't work — torture works.... Waterboarding is fine, but it's not nearly tough enough, okay?"
On taxes: "I try and pay as little tax as possible, because I hate what they do with my tax money. I hate the way they spend our money". And then: "I know people making a tremendous amount of money and paying virtually no taxes, and I think it's unfair." During a debate, when Clinton pointed out that Trump may not have paid any federal taxes for several years, Trump replied, "That makes me smart."
On climate change: "Snowing in Texas and Louisiana, record setting freezing temperatures throughout the country and beyond. Global warming is an expensive hoax!" "I don't believe in climate change." This, while his golf resort in Ireland applies for a special permit to build a seawall to protect the resort from sea level rise due to climate change.
Regarding the use of nuclear weapons: "The fact is that we need unpredictability."
On energy: "We're going to bring the coal industry back 100 percent." And: "When you mention natural gas, we're behind it 100 percent." One of the biggest factors in the decline of coal is the increase in cheaper and more plentiful natural gas as an alternative. This is a bigger factor than EPA regulations.
On women in the military: "26,000 unreported sexual assaults in the military — only 238 convictions. What did these geniuses expect when they put men & women together?"
And So Is Pence
On a woman's right to choose: "I long for the day that Roe v Wade is sent to the ash heap of history."
On women in the military: "Moral of the story: women in military, bad idea."
On climate change: "I think the science is very mixed on the subject of global warming." "Global warming is a myth...There, I said it. Just like the 'new Ice Age' scare of the 1970s, the environmental movement has found a new chant for their latest 'Chicken Little' attempt to raise taxes and grow centralized governmental power. The chant is 'the sky is warming! the sky is warming!'"
On evolution: "I embrace the view that God created the heavens and the Earth and the seas and all that's in them."
On cigarettes: "Despite the hysteria from the political class and the media, smoking doesn't kill." Let me emphasize this one for you:
Mike Pence said, "...smoking doesn't kill."
On Planned Parenthood: "As long as they aspire to do that [provide abortions], I'll be after them." "I think the American people have begun to learn that the largest abortion provider in the country is also the largest recipient of federal funding under Title X and they want to see that come to an end." See above regarding Title X funding being used for abortions. Hint: None of the Title X funding goes towards abortions.
On condoms: "Frankly, condoms are a very, very poor protection against sexually transmitted diseases."
On LGBTQs: "Congress should oppose any effort to recognize homosexuals as a 'discreet and insular minority' entitled to the protection of anti-discrimination laws similar to those extended to women and ethnic minorities." He also once said that gay couples will cause "societal collapse." And remember his "religious liberty" law passed in Indiana which allows businesses to discriminate against LGBTQs?
On Gay Conversion Therapy: "Congress should support the reauthorization of the Ryan White Care Act only after completion of an audit to ensure that federal dollars were no longer being given to organizations that celebrate and encourage the types of behaviors that facilitate the spreading of the HIV virus. Resources should be directed toward those institutions which provide assistance to those seeking to change their sexual behavior."
On party politics: "Republicans, from George Washington to George W Bush just have better ideas." Wait, let's just look at the first part of that statement, where this fucking imbecile calls George Washington a Republican. Washington, who not only didn't belong to a political party, but warned against them.
On fighting HIV in Africa: "The timeless values of abstinence and marital faithfulness before condom distribution are the cure for what ails the families of Africa. It is important that we not just send them money, but we must send them values that work."
He didn't say it about his running mate, Donald Trump, but he should have: "This isn't the old days where you can just say stuff and people will believe it."
The Bottom Line
My biggest fear for a Trump Presidency is climate change and the damage Trump can do. Yes, he's an idiot who is going to royally fuck this country, but if we keep pumping out CO2 like there's no tomorrow, there may not be a tomorrow. For us and for the entire planet.