Moving On

Well, Donald Trump got almost as many votes as Hillary Clinton (some people’s votes don’t count as much as others), and now he’s going to be our next president. I’m going to have to take the same advice I would have given Trump’s supporters had the election gone the other way: “Suck it up, buttercup.”

In the interest of healing a fractured nation, and focussing my resolve, I will no longer (publicly) insult Trump. I will certainly criticize flaws in his policies (should he ever articulate any policies), and I will comment on all current and new criminal investigations brought against him. But no more (public) name-calling.

The same goes for his followers. Some of them will realize, as time passes, that their jobs are NOT coming back — in fact they’re vanishing faster than ever — and the community college system they could have used to move to a new career is withering and dying. They will realize that even more people are being grievously hurt by drinking their own tap water, and that pollution from fracking is killing their children. They will notice that terrorism didn’t just vanish.

Some of the people who voted for Trump yesterday will realize that they’ve been hoodwinked, and perhaps make another decision in four years. Others will continue to blame whatever scapegoat they are handed next and respond with the logic “If Trump’s not getting it done, what we need is more Trump.”

There’s not much I can do about that latter group, but name-calling won’t help. All I can do is be civil, provide a contrast to the shouting coming out of their noise-boxes, stand up for the truth, watch out for my neighbors, and hope that after four years the thieves leave with all they can carry but don’t actually light the house on fire.

Whoops. This is going to be really difficult.


3 thoughts on “Moving On

  1. Silent grief might be an appropriate response. President-elect Trump will enjoy the luxury of House of Representatives and Senate majorities. The Supreme Court will again be a nine-member court, with majority support for the political decisions of the new administration, thus effectively blocking any minority party or lower court dissent.

    Personally, I will grieve for the 30 million Americans who will be stripped of health coverage with repeal of the Affordable Care Act, with the absolute certainty that no alternative will be forth-coming. I will grieve for the additional millions who will lose coverage due to reinstatement of “pre-existing conditions” insurance denials and other similar non-payment practices of the health insurance industry.

    States will be free to extend comprehensive voter suppression laws. Minority protections will disappear. Unrestricted political funding and lobbying will become a permanent privilege of mega-corporations and the super-rich.

    That’s just for starters. We’re entering a new era that will impact this nation for the next several generations. It cannot end well.

  2. You can accept the results, and maybe even should — even if they’re illegitimate — in the interest of “peaceful transition of power” (a la Gore ’00). However, if you believe that there was malfeasance, and there was, you should NOT just accept that the next election should be run the same way. Some things that could be fixed, any of which could have swung the election:
    – Illegal disenfranchisement, such as Crosscheck, or the gerrymandering which is struck down in court, but after the election (see N. Carolina, which is bathing in a cesspool of non-democratic action right now)
    – Legal disenfranchisement, such as making voting painful (long lines) or impossible (broken old machines) for certain classes of citizens
    – Changing state laws to sane ones, such as checking and counting provisional ballots in close elections instead of throwing them in the trash, or (see Michigan), striking down laws that prevent the tally of votes in a recount which were originally excluded due to broken machines, or if the machine tally doesn’t match the hand count to the vote (which would be one of the obvious reasons to have a recount in the first place).
    – To do most of that, you’ll need to make Secretary of State at the state level a non-partisan position (or board) … I’m looking at you, FL, KS and OH
    – Reinstating the Voting Rights Act, because it’s clear that some states need that.
    – Find a way to prevent “neutral” players like the FBI director from violating the “silent period” 90 days before the election. One option might be actually punishing the man for violating election law, rather than paying him off later.
    – Find ways to prevent hostile actors (like Russia) from influencing the elections, either through direct hacks or through influence (how is this remotely OK with anyone)
    – Find ways to prevent domestic groups from disseminating false information (i.e. enforce libel laws on i-media, like you would on “real” media)
    – Not presume the exit polls — which are our standard for evaluating the legitimacy of foreign elections — are wrong, and discover where the discrepancy is between how people say they voted and how their votes were counted. If you have met a “shy Trump supporter” in your life, you can skip this step.

    OTOH, you should just expect the next election to be run the same way, since it’s in the vested interests interests. I think without a VRA in place, you can expect what’s happening in N. Carolina to be played out on the big stage, with dire results for what you might call Democracy.

    • There’s a lot here, and I agree with most of it. I think were it not for a systemic effort to make it more difficult for minorities to vote, this election could easily have gone the other way. My nephew’s vote was not counted, along with thousands of other early ballots that voted against the woman in charge of counting votes.

      And gerrymandering is without a doubt a threat to democracy.

      The technology exists to solve almost all the voting problems, and it’s ridiculously simple. Blockchain-based voting systems — whether or not they enabled online voting or still maintained the idea of a “polling place” — would make confirmation easy while preserving anonymity. At least until quantum computing breaks blockchains.

      Funny that after the CIA essentially sold out Hillary Clinton; suddenly they’re wishing there was a rational human being heading for the White House. If they had Benghazi to do over again…

      Libel law is just too damn slow for the Internet. ALL law is too damn slow. In the wild west, law was remote, and was easily subverted. The law finally caught up. Let’s hope that the law can speed up enough to be relevant on the Internet.

Leave a Reply to Jerry Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *