The horizon is not so far as we can see, but as far as we can imagine

Open Thread

Feel free to use the comments to discuss topics unrelated to recent posts.

Note: Getting tired of the election, though of course there’ll be a piece on what a Biden admin portends, but note that AP and Fox have both called the election for Biden.


The Deep Green and the Shore


Week-end Wrap – Political Economy – November 8, 2020


  1. Willy

    I sometimes think that Trump seems so desperate because he’s in serious legal and financial trouble. Other times I think he’s severely addicted to the power, all the worshipful attention, and being able to fire lots of people. He’s obviously not trying to save America, because there would’ve been some evidence of that by now.

  2. Very little has fundamentally changed. This is the beginnings of a blogpost maybe tomorrow though most likely mid-week. About the time the Democratic “Leadership” Central Committee (DLCC) was bowling over the primary process and slipping him in the side door, declaring him (((The Candidate))) – something they could have as easily done four years ago but did not. (oh, wait!) – Status Quo Joe was telling a room full of Wall Street donors that “Nothing Would Fundamentally Change.” Very little has changed.

    It appears Trump has been voted out (roughly) 50/40/10% – fifty (50) percent against Trump, forty (40) percent for and ten (10) percent masterbating. However, while it may yet happen in January and if it does it is marginal at best there has been no gain the Senate, and indeed what appears to be a loss of Dem seats, though not their majority, in the House. This is not a mandate, this is not change.

    We’re facing four (4) more years of the same bullshit we’ve put up with for the last twelve (12), if not twenty-five (25).

    We have to stop doing what we’re doing. It isn’t working.

  3. KT Chong

    Actually, the real reason for why Trump seems so desperate is because he knows Twitter is gonna ban him when he leaves the White House. 😂

    The Independent: Trump could be banned from Twitter after he leaves office, company’s rules indicate, Nov. 5, 2020:

  4. Plague Species

    Wow, I’m gobsmacked, even these slimy lawyers, redundant I know because ALL lawyers are slimy, have some scruples hidden deep in their moral basement if they even have a moral basement.

    Twitter on Thursday permanently suspended the account of Bannon’s podcast, “War Room: Pandemic,” after his comments about Fauci and Wray on that show, when he was discussing a hypothetical second term for Trump. Fauci is the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

    The episode was removed by YouTube as well for violating that video platform’s policies.

    On his podcast, Bannon had said, “Second term kicks off with firing Wray, firing Fauci.”

    “Now I actually want to go a step farther, but I realize the president is a kind-hearted man and a good man,” Bannon said.

    “I’d actually like to go back to the old times of Tudor England, I’d put the heads on pikes, right, I’d put them at the two corners of the White House as a warning to federal bureaucrats. You either get with the program or you’re gone – time to stop playing games.”

    What a weirdo. What kind of person calls for people to be beheaded and their heads put on pikes? That’s psychotic. 😜

  5. hahaamericaisover

    Trump was not worse than any recent president. Nothing will change, the economy will get far worse under Biden, and a real fascist will rise. Luckily I have a permanent visa in another country and will be laughing my ass off from abroad while you fruity liberals keep electing the LOTE to bail out your sinking ship with Bidens and Harrises and Buttigiegs and you\’ll deserve every moment of pain.

  6. Tom Fitton and Sidney Powell talking about the election shenanigans, on Lou Dobbs’ show:

    John Solomon has also gotten involved in the election fraud issue, in a serious way. He was interviewed on Sean Hannity’s show a day or two ago. I think he said that he’s focusing on interviewing people in a Wisconsin county, which supposedly voted at a 90% clip. has what they call “Epic Voter Fraud Compilation: All Election Theft Caught On Tape In One Place” that’s 1:42 long. Only watched a few minutes of it.

  7. Dan Lynch

    This news from Irandid not get much attention:

    Tehran Prosecutor General Ali Alqasi-Mehr named Trump as the key individual at the top of the list, saying his pursuit will continue even after his tenure as U.S. president. “The arrogant should await a vengeance at the level of the great name of Soleimani,”

    Iran would not be foolish enough to drone a sitting president because that would spark WWIII. But after Trump leaves office, he might be fair game. Iran certainly has the technology to drone Trump while he’s golfing at Mar-a-lago, and the drone could fly away, never to be seen again, so attribution would be difficult. It’s not that I would shed any tears for Trump, but if he were droned that would certainly send a strong message to America. Karma.

  8. From “The media are running a coup against President Trump. Is the GOP in on it?” at, we read:

    I was scrolling through likely 2024 presidential candidate Nikki Haley’s Twitter feed last night. Not once did she express support for President Trump as he endured round after round of social media censorship while fighting back the media’s attempt to declare him the loser in this year’s race.

    Instead, Haley was busy posting dozens of smiling photos of herself with various Congressional candidates. Not a peep about how the media was scuttling the president’s re-election bid.


    If Trump survives into a 2nd term, he’ll have a much better idea of who his friends are.

  9. Hugh

    From wikipedia, “John F. Solomon is an American journalist, conspiracy theorist, media executive, and a conservative political commentator. He was an editorialist and executive vice president of digital video for The Hill and as of October 2019, is a contributor to Fox News. He was formerly an executive and editor-in-chief at The Washington Times.”

    Yes, let’s listen to the conspiracy theorists. They know the truth.

    Trump’s endless loss (it is his last big chance for it all to be about him) has stolen all the oxygen out of the room, but other big losers in all this who we could be discussing are Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer, and Tom Perez. These are the people who instead of pushing hard for increasing/creating Democratic Congressional majorities just assumed it, mailed it in, and blew it.

  10. KT Chong

    33% of Germans supported and voted for the Nazi Party in the 1933 German election. The majority of Germans did not support Nazism. Yet, the 33.3% was enough for Nazi to seize power and become the government.

    At any time, up to about 1/3 of any given population are just… NOT good people: they are the deplorables, the despicables, the neo-fascists, the neo-Nazi. They are just bad, evil, rotten people deep down inside. We cannot change their nature. We certainly cannot exterminate them. The best we can do is to marginalize them to keep them in check and from power.

    Americans do not want to accept it because Americans believe they are “special”, but that 1/3 general rule applies to America as well.

    What to do with that 1/3 of the population who are just not good people deep down inside, how do we keep them in check? That is the challenge that is facing America, (or just the world in general.) That is just the ugly truth of humanity.

    Just remember: because of that 1/3 of Germans who supported Nazi, after the war ALL Germans were held accountable—for being apathetic, for not standing up and stopping Nazi as they saw it rise. All Germans were blamed for and paid heavy prices for the sins and crimes of that 33%.

    The lesson here for Americans who just saw 70 mils of their own countrymen actively, deliberately, knowingly support and voted for a neo-fascist: in the end, ALL Americans will be held accountable if they do not rein in that 1/3. “I did not support the fascist” or “I have nothing to do with it” will not be an acceptable excuse.

  11. Hugh

    Bannon is a straightforward fascist. He was Trump’s guru. Trump has supported and defended racists and white nationalists. Yet despite surrounding himself with fascists, it does not get said often enough that Trump does so because he is a fascist. This is another thing Trumpers have to own. They love themselves a fascist.

  12. Thomas Golladay

    At this point, only a full vote audit, under observation, can prevent a full civil war. The Republican Base is already bitchslapping more GOP officials into line and if nothing else, Matt Gaetz and Lindsey Grahm can object to certifying the results and force a 12th Amendment remedy.

    Perception is everything now. And perception is that the vote got rigged and both sides are trying to steal the result.

  13. Zachary Smith

    Last week I was clearing out a storage building when I found an old but never-used butane lighter. (“distributed by Cricket, a division of Wilkinson Sword, Inc>) I could find nothing regarding this item on the internet, so here is a picture I made of it.

    Notice how “The Right To Light!” is a take-off on the “right to life” slogan. In the one case, some “religious” types try to bully society into adopting the rules and regulations of their own flat-headed sects, and in the other heroic Americans demand the “Right” to inflict second-hand smoke anywhere they damned well please.

    Delayed cancer is one thing, but immediate illness and possibly death from Covid because these same heroes insist on their “Right” to go anywhere without masks during a pandemic is quite another.

    Local Hoosiers drive around in their Rolling Coal “rice burners” – pickups modified to emit enormous clouds of black smoke which can temporarily block the view of the highway. They remove the mufflers from their vehicles to make themselves obnoxious – It’s Their Right!

    If they don’t want to wear protective helmets while on their motorcycles, they’re demonstrating Freedom.

    The great philosopher Ann Coulter has taken the concept to a new level:

    “God gave us the earth. We have dominion over the plants, the animals, the trees. God said, ‘Earth is yours. Take it. Rape it. It’s yours.’”—Hannity & Colmes, 6/20/01

    Unfortunately these Freedoms for Morons have been encouraged by individuals and groups with very deep pockets.

    (rant over)

  14. Ten Bears

    Don’t let the door hit you on the ass, ha, your kind’s not welcome here. You will no doubt forfeit any accumulated assets you have here – unemployment benefits, social security, medicare? Citizenship? I hear Ufuckafuckistan is cheap though Dubai has a hot job market.

    Thomas, the vote is already under “full audit”, under scrutiny, by observers from both sides. You’re blowin’ sunshine but it ain’t goin’ anywhere. Unless of course you mean a full United Nations audit. Somehow I don’t think you do. But by all mean though, please. Bring. It. On.

    What was it were hearing from the reich-wing trolls twenty years ago? Upon the appointment by an ideologically stacked panel of non-elected activist partisan vigilanties of the scion of old-school, blu-blooded, Hitler financing, FDR coup attempt Robber Baron money lacking intellect, of limited education and no practical experience to the highest office of the land?

    Oh yeah, I remember – “You lost. Get over it.”

    Not like any of us “won” anything.

  15. @Thomas Golladay


    what matters is the unified reality presented by the media

    That still matters, a lot, and I can’t get over the fact that even highly intelligent relatives have apparently swallowed the “reality” presented by CNN and MSNBC.

    Much of Fox is OK with the “official” math, apparently. However, Sean Hannity, Laura Ingraham, Mark Levin, and top rated cablehost guy Tucker Carlson seem quite willing to call out the fraud. I expect they will quickly fold if Trump folds, and start up with “we can never let this happen, again” (but, of course, do absolutely nothing to help organize even the conservative side of the public to do so).

    Trump doesn’t have much of a moral center, so I’d be absolutely unsurprised if he folded. However … he has a history of using legal proceedings to accomplish business ends. (Generally not honorably, but I don’t know a lot about his history. I’m more confident that a LOT was dishonorable.) It’s not a huge leap to accomplish a political end – one that may free him from worries from prosecution by rabid, ruthless Democrats. There’s also what, to my lying eyes, appears to be a bond of affection between Trump and his adoring fans.

    Besides some of the Fox luminaries, there is alternative media. Bannon’s twitter feed may have been obliterated; but I signed up for parler, so can still follow him just as easily. Banned youtube videos can just as easily be shown on vimeo, or hosted directly (though with less or even no hope of advertising revenue.)

    I’m not inclined to watch any more of Tim unless you can give me a reason or two why it’d be worth my while. He got something fundamentally wrong. That’s as dopey as blaming Trump for ALL 200,000+ covid deaths, in the US.

    I agree with you that getting “a full vote audit, under observation”, would be a step in the right direction. But, can that resurrect Trump-likely ballots that were destroyed? No, of course not.

    I think the fairest thing to do, in terms of the voters, is a red0 of the entire election, with scrupulous counting, chain of custody, etc. Short of that, doing that for just mutually agreed (D & R) states. Probably, both are impractical, if you want to swear in a President in January. That means the process with state-selected electors.

  16. Hugh

    About 11:30, Pennsylvania and the election called for Biden.

  17. Plague Species

    Luckily I have a permanent visa in another country….

    Israel? Russia? North Korea? The Philippines? Saudi Arabia? Do tell.

  18. Plague Species

    About 11:30, Pennsylvania and the election called for Biden.

    Yee Haw!! Hallelujah!! “Ding dong, the witch is dead, the witch is dead, the witch is dead…..” If only it was. The witch isn’t dead until the orange fat man bleeds out entirely.

    President Biden. Sounds a sight better than McDonald Trump. I refused these past four years to call McDonald president because in my estimation he never was president despite his claims to the contrary.

  19. Chicago Clubs

    >At any time, up to about 1/3 of any given population are just… NOT good people

    Depending on what your definition of “good person” is, I think it’s actually a lot higher. Maybe a third is what I would consider actively evil, but perhaps half or even more or just moral weathervanes who have never developed a principle of their own in their lives and end up believing in whatever the people around them do (and boy oh boy does the media help). However they feel perfectly fine being extremely self-righteous about these views they’ve had spoonfed to them.

  20. Hugh

    “That’s as dopey as blaming Trump for ALL 200,000+ covid deaths, in the US.”

    Yes, it’s not like the fascist Trump was President or anything.

    Fixed it for you: The fairest thing is for the election to be redone until Trump wins.

  21. bruce wilder

    What is it with the ranting!??

    What is that about? Addicted to your Two Minutes of Hate (a la 1984)?

    Saying, “Trump is a fascist!” means something? “1/3 of any given population are just… NOT good people: they are the deplorables, the despicables, the neo-fascists, the neo-Nazi. They are just bad, evil, rotten people deep down inside.” Really?

    Because more people voted for Trump the second time, after the evidence was in, when the “alternative” was a ham sandwich?

    Voter participation rose in a pandemic/depression with no good choice at the top of the ballot. That rise in participation is a surprise to me. That the result of the Presidential vote was so close in so many states — a diverse collection as far as I can see — is also curious. How did the two-party system manage such an equal division in so many places while offering two corrupt morons paired with the likes of Harris and Pence?

    I hear yelling out the window just now. Biden finally declared the winner!

  22. Tony Wikrent

    So, one corporatist rapist with severely pronounced authoritarian tendencies will be replaced by another corporatist rapist with less pronounced authoritarian tendencies. I doubt Biden will last four years, given the multiple political and economic shit-storms now being unleashed, so we’ll have President Harris is due course. At least, she’s not a rapist. Improvement! Yay!

    In the meantime, there is a very insightful and provocative article up at Dissent, by Jedediah Britton-Purdy, a professor at Columbia University Law School since 2019 (previously, he taught at Duke Law School 15 years., and regular contributor to Jacobin, Dissent, and on the editorial board of The American Prospect.

    “A Possible Majority: A political history of the present moment. ”

    “[I]t is essential to orient radical politics toward a possible majority, and that if we are not doing that, in this country, we are doing something other than politics….

    “The past decade has brought the greatest revival of left energies in half a century, if not longer. The past year has also seen the rout of the left in the Democratic presidential primaries, ensuring a near-term future of dissent and supplication more than ruling. This situation makes the choices of the next years particularly important. Will they point toward accepting a marginal, gadfly role, with power in a few city governments (which are, sadly, mostly not very powerful themselves) and a visionary flank of legislators who rarely control key votes? Or will they continue to press toward the goal, not just of the Bernie Sanders campaign itself, but of the activists and energies that gathered around it: to build a majority that can wield power?

    “….Pursuing majorities is especially frustrating in the United States because antidemocratic features of the political system make a political majority sharply different from a demographic or even electoral majority. The Electoral College, the Senate, gerrymandering, and disenfranchisement all stanch majorities, while the Supreme Court can thwart them even when they become effective. I’ve argued elsewhere that a democratic agenda in the United States should include constitutional reform and full enfranchisement for everyone who makes their lives here. But in any version, to get there, we have to go through the institutions we have…..

    ….Sanders’s campaign began as a classic protest run, with hardly a thought of upending Clinton’s richly bolstered expectation of the nomination. The movement that gathered around him would not have taken the form it did without his candidacy, but in many ways it took Sanders as its occasion, rather than his conjuring it. The underappreciated leading indicator in 2016 was that Sanders, a politically marginal maverick from a small state, was among the most-followed politicians on social media. His clarity and forcefulness on economic inequality and political oligarchy made him a gathering point for a new climate of opinion that was emerging from mutual affirmations of radicalism…. 

    The left will need, too, to work out relations—not necessarily one relationship—between its internationalist disposition and the fight for national majorities that is, and is likely to remain for our lifetimes, the main arena of constructive politics. Those majorities, and their states, are the actual agents of any fundamental transformation. No such agents exist for a democratic, egalitarian politics on an international scale. A left politics that rejects national sentiment as such, or refuses on principle the idea that a state should often put its own people’s welfare first, will cut itself off from the workings of politics. There are perfectly respectable reasons to advocate a more radical internationalism, but such advocacy tends to be a retreat from politics here and now, back toward the more testimonial moralism of “truth to power.” “

  23. Dan

    Off to brunch…

  24. Plague Species

    Will President Biden put an end to Medicare and Social Security as we know it and knew it now that he has the perfect Congress for it? I wouldn’t be surprised. They will justify it as part of a huge Pandemic Response Stimulus Bill that is yet another giveaway to the wealthy elite with a few immediate crumbs for the unwashed at the expense of Medicare and Social Security. President Biden will “put it all on the table.”

    “When I argued that we should freeze federal spending, I meant Social Security as well,” he told the Senate in 1995. “I meant Medicare and Medicaid. I meant veterans’ benefits. I meant every single solitary thing in the government. And I not only tried it once, I tried it twice, I tried it a third time, and I tried it a fourth time.” (A freeze would have reduced the amount that would be paid out, cutting the program’s benefit.)

    I’m sure AOC and Bernie will hold his feet to the fire and would never support privatizing Social Security and Medicare so the Pandemic Stimulus Bill can get passed with overwhelming bipartisan support.

  25. bruce wilder

    “Harris bursts through another barrier, becoming the first female, first Black and first South Asian vice president-elect.”


  26. Trump just said

    I will not rest until the American people have the honest vote count they deserve, and democracy demands.

    (if I got my dictation right.) Apparently, this came out during Giuliani’s announcement of an election lawsuit, currently still going on. He’s got 90 witnesses.

  27. Trinity

    Speaking of psychos: every narcissist I’ve even known (thankfully few) live in a fake but well constructed, alternate reality in which they are extremely attractive, extremely smart, make the best-possible decisions always, never make any mistakes whatsoever, will directly control what can and cannot be said and what emotions can and cannot be expressed, and will attack, undermine, drive away, or destroy anyone or anything that threatens that alternate reality.

    A narcissist’s children do not “enable” him (or her). Some of his children accept his alternate reality as the actual reality (these are the ones who speak out) and may be narcissists themselves. A few others will pretend, in order to “go along to get along”, but know differently and keep their mouths shut when it matters. And there are definitely one or two who have become outcasts (the ones you never hear about unless they write a book). This minority understand exactly what is going on, refuse to accept the constructed reality, and are only invited to family gatherings to provide target practice and entertainment value.

    As far as why people vote for a narcissist? My experience from decades in a rural county in Virginia is that the decision to be a “conservative” voter has a very high social dimension. The decision who to vote for is also like racism, unfortunately passed down from parent to child, and these choices are further informed by the family’s social groups. Your choices define the groups in which you are accepted. So it’s possible to think of some Trump voters in terms of wanting to belong to the “correct” social group (and/or also being accepted within one’s family).

    In other words, there are social dimensions to political choice. I cannot remember who said it, but sometimes people are invested in the group, not the ideas of the group. They are heavily invested in believing/accepting the ideas of the group in order to remain within the group. Even if there is overwhelming evidence that those ideas are actual lies (in whole or in part).

    For people to believe something as true, in the face of overwhelming evidence against, suggests they have a very large investment in believing the lie. And for some, the lie becomes the truth, because the alternative means a tremendous or unacceptable social loss. And as income inequality continues to grow, social groups and family groups become even more important for mere survival.

    I’m not excusing or maligning anyone here, I’m just saying. But please note the similarities between “normal” families and the inheritance of “acceptable” ideas, and the dynamics of narcissism. And cults. And how narcissists, whose only needs are for continual attention and continual approbation, use our human need for belonging against us. And how social groups and their ideas come to represent the interests of all the individuals in the group, whether they actually do or not. And that depending on a social group for survival may mean that your actual interests are never represented.

    As income inequality continues to grow, politics also becomes increasingly irrelevant because there are only a few who can buy or direct policy. In terms of maintaining your standard of living, that depends more on your social group than which side you want to vote for. You vote with your social group to retain membership in the group and survive.

    AFAIK, there is no fix for narcissists. The narcissist’s need for attention and approbation does not end with his presidency. He’s had a taste of it at the international level, and he will literally do anything to keep it. Narcissists like him are created within toxic family environments, and are endemic to toxic cultures, where they are lauded and given positions of power so that the cycle continues ad infinitum. Politics, captured as it is by the monied (narcissist) class, is never is going to fix this fundamental problem of western (and other) cultures.

    At the national level, the interests of the little people are now shown to be evenly divided between two “options” that are also two slightly different but completely fake realities. What does this mean? Does it even (ultimately) matter which fake reality wins?

    My only wish is that the knowledge of how narcissists are created, and the damage they do at all scales will be carried into the future. This is the only way that the future will look any different.

    And the only way to have a true democracy is where the welfare of all people is supported without respect to any ideology. As the Northern Europeans are proving, the best model may be a combination of socialism and capitalism, where each is constrained from becoming the dominant ideology. This might also prevent people being, in some cases, forced to vote against their own best interests in order to just survive.

  28. Willy

    I doubt that any amount of “intellectual” will persuade very much these days. The Lincoln Project tried and failed to persuade much amongst their own conservative brethren. Steve Schmidt of Ahnold and McCain fame persuaded very few of them. Former GOP chair Michael Steele persuaded very few of them.

    Their own beloved heroes from just a few years ago, with names like Powell, Negroponte, Bolton, Kristol, Romney, Flake, Kasich, Schwarzenegger, Frum, Goldberg, Fiorina… persuaded very few of them.

    So this must mean that Trumpists are now fighting against the failed DC elites? That they’re all now working class populists fighting against endless wars, the system, the swamp, The Man?

    Did anybody hear any flag waving, bible banging, horn honking Trumpists speak of doing anything for the troops, the hardworking poor, the wall, a free media, democracy, or anything that might actually improve the overall health of the nation?

    The Left may have to accept that a significant percentage of the population, hell, of any population, is batshit crazy stupid and will quite happily follow each other off cliffs. So do we just ignore them as stupid assholes?

  29. Hugh

    Trump’s defeat allows for a reckoning. We have seen for four years the Trumpers’ over-the-top defenses and justifications of Trump’s fascism, racism, endless nasty moronic lies, crookedness, and his very real responsibility for and murderous botch of the coronavirus. That Trump lost the election hasn’t slowed them down a bit. They don’t rail against the anti-democratic nature of the electoral college. They’re pissed that Trump wasn’t able to milk it like he did in 2016. They believe that Trump can not lose. So if he does, there must be some nefarious conspiracy behind it.

    I’m done with Trumpers wanting it both ways, supporting a fascist without owning their own fascism. Acting like Trump being a fascist is controversial is disingenuous. He’s been rubbing our faces in it daily for years.

  30. Willy

    As for narcissists themselves:

    A key characteristic of Dark Triad types is having such low agreeableness that they enjoy “ruining”. Ruining is a very common theme amongst all of the ones I’ve known, or who’ve spoken honestly about their own needs. With no ability to feel empathy or guilt, but all of the ability to feel emotions that come from exercising power and control, they describe the feeling that comes from ruining something or someone as delicious.

    Another key characteristic is that they view normals as stupid. Not immoral or different or right or left or wrong, since those concepts feel like nothing to them. Instead, if anybody is easily manipulated, or martyrs themselves for some cause, or follows some tribe even if it’s one the narcissist created, they’re stupid. There is no right or wrong with them. Only selfishness, social skill, and stupidity.

    Dark Triad types learn from us normals, how to advance themselves within our society. And they don’t always do so consciously. We in effect, train most of them how they should behave. We should be in control, being that they’re only 1-3% of the general population at the furthest extreme of the temperamental spectrum.

    Controlling them becomes difficult because they’re capable of any behavior to get whatever they want, and this behavior is so far outside the realm of normal behavior that it’s hard for the average normal to comprehend. In small tribal societies I’d imagine they’re quickly spotted and banished. But in very large ones they gain ‘credibility’ because of their ‘success’ and power. Plus it’s so much easier for them to hide, in plain sight.

  31. bruce wilder

    The subjective turn of the screw — analyzing politics as individual psychopathology and assessing officials and candidates and pundits as celebrity “personalities” or carefully constructed theatrical personas — defeats the politics of politics, the politics of governance by means of institution-building and rule-making and power born of social organization and ideological commitment. It does this by design, I think.

    I suppose it is natural to look back “at what was lost” for models of what could be. I do not want to argue over nostalgia. That is not my point. So I am resisting my own impulse to use the mirror of the past for constrasts with which to sketch the shadows of the present. (Is that a mixed metaphor or a single, complex metaphor? Speculate among yourselves.)

    There are consequences for “othering” those who choose a different horn of ambivalence from yourself, for your own psychological and intellectual health. That the great majority of ordinary people including those who comment here do not possess a deep understanding of what troubles the U.S.A. or what political policies have any potential as transformative remedies is a fact. It leaves us flailing about as individual personalities in the face of deep, collective, institutional problems that require social organization to address.

    We do need social processes to collectively think through problems, so that we can cooperate in the rule-making and institution building needed. We are not permitted the space to do that. It would not result in general agreement on anything if we did; real politics is mostly agreeing to disagree, while getting on with it, for a variety of different reasons.

    It is a deep mistake that dark forces are encouraging you to make if you choose in a nominal democracy to dismiss those who share in your ignorance for coming to a different stupid, uninformed, under-rationalized opinion than the one you repeat.

    I do not know if there is any hope in the politics of the U.S. Certainly, there is very little integrity in the political media or among elected officials and that is a serious problem for spectators like ourselves, here to root for someone or something. That is not a reason to make it worse, with unreflective echoes of their polluted discourse.

  32. Zachary Smith

    From the UK Independent:

    “What Trump might do now he’s lost the election”

    Sections = ‘Sabotaging’ the transition, Destroying records, Self-dealing, and Pardons.

    I fear the Orange POTUS will be doing a lot more than that.

  33. Ten Bears

    Okay, it couldn’t wait for Sunday …

    Nothing has fundamentally changed.

  34. Willy

    bruce, the only way to release somebody from a cult, is to offer them more than their cult does, usually love, fellowship and economic alliances.

    Got any realistic ideas?

  35. Plague Species

    A preview of Biden’s speech tonight. They haven’t even woken him up from his nap yet to tell him he’s the 46th president of the United States.

    Nathaniel Nathaniel Nathaniel

    There will be no healing. You can not appease and assuage fascists. They will be gunning for Biden the next four years if he lives that long, both literally and figuratively. Either those propping Biden up put the fascists down, including and especially Trump, or the fascists put them down in four years. They are not miraculously going away now that Biden is POTUS. They are instead emboldened even more.

  36. nihil obstet

    I run into too much cognitive dissonance when I try to think about how evil and stupid most people are and why it is worthwhile being anything but a narcissist. Luckily, I’m a sufficiently normal person that the question doesn’t come up too much — that is, I strongly disagree with the idea that I m so evil and stupid that I need a minority set of rulers to make decisions for me, just like most of the other members of my species. That’s called authoritarianism, and characterizes the right wing.

    Let’s work more at figuring out what is going on in most people’s choices, the ones who don’t have the time and interest to spend hours ranting on the internet. Most people are convinced that they are doing right. I assume most of the commenters here are convinced that they are right and those who disagree are stupid and/or evil. Can we explain what’s good without constant recourse to abusive language, especially language of sexual violent aggression? What are you trying to do with that?

    This election was about crating the minds of an increasingly restive population into politics as sporting event. Let’s not throw the restiveness away by continuing to focus our own minds on how right and smart we are.

    Democracy is difficult and rarely gives anyone exactly what she wants. But it’s still better than authoritarianism.

  37. different clue

    @Bruce Wilder,

    Let me truthen up that Kamala Harris newsblatt a little.

    ” Goldman-Sachs feminist Harris burst through another Tiffany Glass Ceiling barrier, becoming the first female Oligarch, the first Black Oligarch and the first South Asian Oligarch to become Vice-President Oligarch Elect.”

    Truly a Woke Rainbowligarch.

    Pink KKK Catfood Democrats everywhere squeal in delight.

    And Wall Street Criminals and Criminal-Wannabes smile a secret smile of secret assurance of secret protection for all their crimes and all the new crimes they plan to commit.

    The Kamalabeast did very well for itself by granting Steve Mnuchin immunity and impunity for his criminal foreclosure fraud crime wave back in California.

  38. Zachary Smith

    Want to know about a really lousy proposal? It’s that Biden Pardons Trump.

    Let Trump try pardoning himself. Or risk having Pence do it. Biden, NO!

    Sad to say, I can definitely imagine Mr. “hands across the aisle” doing something like this.

  39. Zachary Smith

    Something I found when I put the words “Trump” and “loser” into a search window:

    Normally, a president with a thriving economy builds up a reservoir of public approval and support — but Trump never did. His unappeasable need for affirmation, adoration and attention inhibited him from adding to his base of ardent supporters; it also led to the constant churn and uncertainty of his White House, as he dismissed those in the administration willing to push back and promoted the yes-men who were content to “let Trump be Trump.” His abiding conviction in the utility of division and chaos led to a whirl of staff turnover and a cascade of head-spinning feuds and inflammatory tweets that unnerved and exhausted a larger and larger share of the population as well as a share of his Washington allies. And his obsession with blind positivity, with image over reality, with the flouting of fact — his congenital unwillingness to share any credit or take any blame, his practically pathological commitment to putting up a tough front — all of it prevented him from demonstrating sufficient empathy to acknowledge the sweeping pain of the coronavirus pandemic that overshadowed his final year in office. In the end, the problem for Trump was “his Richter scale narcissism,” in the words of biographer Tim O’Brien. “If the only person you care about is yourself,” he said, “you can’t do things for other people.”

    If Biden pardons the b*****d, he’ll likely spin it into another Victory Parade. “Even The Democrats Recognized My Greatness!”

  40. different clue

    @Zachary Smith,

    ” Biden pardons Trump” seems entirely likely. It would be the “Obama” thing to do. And after all, Harris pardoned Mnuchin in all but name back in California. So why not?

  41. Zachary Smith

    And after all, Harris pardoned Mnuchin in all but name back in California. So why not?

    I’d forgotten about that one. Oh, and have I mentioned I don’t care for Harris, either? I’d expect you’re right, but I don’t have to like it.

  42. Hugh

    A deal for Biden to pardon Trump would be tantamount to bribery and would be illegal. Trump being Trump would probably try to pardon himself. But between here and January Trump, the Trump White House, and his cronies are going to spend a lot of their time working out ways to avoid their legal jeopardy. Much of it won’t work. The Democrats could destroy a lot of these people by investigating them, forcing them to testify, hitting them with perjury charges, and bankrupting them by running up their legal bills. Also as Trump is going to learn, a federal pardon does not apply to state charges. I personally would like to see Bill Barr disbarred, but that’s just me.

  43. bruce wilder

    NPR has another report on the CDC testing fail back in the first quarter of the year.

  44. Howard

    Voter suppression has been a way bigger factor in elections than voting fraud for the past 20 years. Nobody talks about it, because the Rs benefit from voter suppression in the general elections and the Ds benefit from it in the primaries.

    Part of the reason for how much the polls overestimated Biden’s margin is that some voters who answered polls were subsequently either turned away at the polls or had their provisional ballots discarded after they voted, and these suppressed voters skewed D.

    Do a search for Greg Palast on Youtube.

  45. Thomas Golladay

    A reminder that the Media doesn’t call elections. State Legislatures do when they certify the vote.

    Increasingly more evidence of voter fraud. 12th Amendment Scenario increasingly likely. A vote audit has been ordered in Pennsylvania by its Senate.

    If Trump had been Nixon, he would have conceded graciously despite the clear fraud. Ironically. for all his flaws, Trump is doing more to uphold election integrity than any other President.

    In the end, the Republican Base will get its way, because they actually fight for it and hold their elected officials’ feet to the fire.

    Regardless, the US Government has been completely de-legitimized. In the long run, probably for the best if it leads to the breaking of the two party system.

  46. bruce wilder

    How would you define “voting fraud”?

    If you mean “electoral fraud” — a term covering a broad range of illegal or immoral conduct, by officials and partisans — then voter suppression might be considered a tactic of electoral fraud. Or, voter suppression might be distinguished from the many means of electoral fraud for reasons of analytic convenience.

    If you mean voter fraud — voting under a false pretence — that is, indeed, a very rare event for the simple reason that it would be a ridiculously expensive way to cheat to win an election in comparison to other means. “Voter fraud” was used by Republicans as disinformation to motivate mandating voter identification as a means of voter suppression.

    The controversies over electoral fraud in the U.S. illustrate the grave difficulties imposed by the politics of stupid. Efforts at reform have been perverted by people’s general disinterest, apathy and unwillingness to hold any official accountable for the systems they put in place. Does any one go to jail for 3-hour lines at a polling place? Someone should. For spending millions on a touchscreen system that cannot be audited? Someone should.

    I do not think either Party takes the integrity of elections seriously. What gets talked about is mostly nonsense.

  47. bruce wilder

    The idea that the outcome of the 1960 Presidential election turned on the result in Illinois is false.

  48. Hugh

    Nixon would have needed to flip both Illinois and Texas to win in 1960. Nixon lost Texas by 46,000 votes. That was too big a margin to be explained away by voter fraud. He lost Illinois by 9,000. And while there was Democratic fraud in Chicago, there was also Republican chicanery downstate. As the wiki on the 1960 election notes, “Moreover, Nixon never led in Illinois, and Kennedy’s lead merely shrank as election night went on.”

  49. Howard

    Voter suppression is an array of tactics for denying the ability to vote to groups of voters. Some of the tactics used over the past two decades:
    1) Interstate cross-check, wherein states share lists of registered voters and kick off people whose personal data matches in two or more states. Although supposedly all data must match, in practice voters with different middle initials, SSNs, and birthdates have been supposedly matched and purged from the voter lists.
    2) Voter caging, which involves sending postcards to people and throwing them off the rolls if they don’t reply.
    3) Misidentification of voters as felons.
    4) Making it physically difficult for people to vote by, for instance, providing few polling stations in poor urban areas and many more in wealthier suburban areas.

    There are a number of other techniques, which you can find in Greg Palast’s online youtube videos or books. These techniques can be tailored to target particular demographics that tend to vote a particular way, thus assuring proportionally fewer votes for some candidates. Nationwide, perhaps 7 million or more voters were affected by voter suppression in 2020.

    Election fraud refers to officials who alter votes or otherwise tamper with results. The Breitbart article referenced above is about this. Since Trump is still in office, then William Barr should bring criminal proceedings against any officials for whom there is credible evidence of such behavior. I doubt they will. When you read the Breitbart article, you find that it has to do with a procedure for resolving unsupplied witness addresses on mail-in votes. Perhaps the procedure is not right, maybe even incompetent, but it doesn’t appear to be evidence of election fraud.

    Voter fraud refers to individuals illegally voting. It is vanishingly rare. In 2017 Trump formed a group to investigate voter fraud. The group was headed by Chris Kobach, the mastermind of interstate cross-check (see voter suppression technique #1 above), and they disbanded having found no evidence of widespread voter fraud.

  50. BlizzardOfOzzz

    I beg your pardon friends, being sick of the election you will just have to humor us for a month or so with recounts, lawsuits and other constitutionally prescribed recourses. If it’s all in order, then you have nothing to lose, and actually something to gain if Joe Biden can be officially certified the most popular candidate (by far!) in US history. What a mandate! You should welcome it.

  51. bruce wilder

    All is not in order.

    In another thread, Ian pointed out that Trump and his unholy minions worked hard to set up an election they were nearly certain to lose as an election they could challenge and dispute, and in the dispute, prevail.

    There is no use in pretending that there is any legitimacy left in this process.

  52. Anonymous

    People that supported Trump are stupid and brainwashed.
    They got TPP shitcanned, they got Nafta renegotiated with a higher wage threshold set, and they got immigration somewhat curtailed.
    Spare me with the racist bullshit, immigration into capitalist countries serves one purpose, and the racist bullshit is a smokescreen that only the ‘educated’ are stupid enough to fall for.
    Biden is a world-class shitbag the people who voted for him are even more stupid and brainwashed than the ‘dumbfucks’ who voted for Trump.

  53. different clue


    If Biden gives Trump a Ford-Pardons-Nixon type of pardon for anything and everything in the whole wide universe that Trump did, did not do, or maybe may or may not have done or not done, it won’t be for “bribery” reasons.

    It will be for “Obama” reasons. It will be for “bipartisanship” and “healing the nation” and “bring us together” and “look forward, not back”.

  54. different clue


    If Biden gets certified by all the relevant governmental and political authorities as having been really truly elected, he will not be the most popular candidate in US history. He will have won by a whisker, not by a wave.

    I will feel some measure of relief at a Biden rebuilding of Administrative State governance-capacity. I will feel some relief at seeing the Republicans’ pure pro-polluter permissiveness rolled back. I will feel a little safer when the black hat bussiness perpetrators are once again somewhat restrained from filling the air with cancer gas, filling the water with cancer juice, and covering the food supply with cancer gravy.

    But my deep sense of abiding bitterness will be restored and resharpened all over again when Biden “pulls an Obama” by conspiring with McConnell to make the Trump Tax Cuts permanent, when Biden revives the Obama Catfood Commission to destroy Social Security, when Biden returns to the stealth anti-Postal Service conspiracy designed to destroy the Postal Service slowly enough that no one notices . . . which was the point of the 2008 law to force the USPS to prefund 75 years worth of postal retiree pension expenses, when Biden restores American policy in the Former Soviet Space to the firm backing of Bandera Nazis in West Ukraine, etc. etc. etc.

  55. Willy

    In another thread, Ian pointed out that Trump and his unholy minions worked hard to set up an election they were nearly certain to lose as an election they could challenge and dispute, and in the dispute, prevail.

    So they were able to precisely engineer losing in a nail biter?

    (The punchline is that I linked into here the very first time, to a blog owner I’d never heard of, from a psychology blog which dealt with sociopathy. But that’s between just us.)

  56. someofparts

    Linking intelligence with decency doesn’t line up with my own experience. It’s not that intelligence is absent from decency of course, it is just incidental to it I think.

  57. Willy

    Time for a thought experiment? So we have these people, obviously quite impassioned about both their lord and savior Jesus and Donald Trump (not sure which is which) who recently spent some serious quality time praying for a Trump victory:

    The experiment is this. Would doing the same to them, praying in tongues, help them see that Trump isn’t gonna be able to be their lord or savior for at least for another 4 years?

    Or maybe somebody smarter than I could ever be, would advise me on the art of gently persuading these folks to be just a little more open minded about living in a Trumpless world.

    With luck the smarter other might successfully disprove my little theory which says that people that far gone, need to be shoved straight into the abyss of batshit nuttery as an example for our unsoiled youth.

  58. Ten Bears

    Having grown up thoroughly steeped in Revelatory Pentecostal Christianity, having rolled on the floor frothing at the mouth quite young, once I outgrew (ran away from home at twelve) it I never really gave it much thought; for over fifty years never afforded it a measure or credibility, never took it quite seriously … until these people began turning away from their god and bowing down, worshiping, a false prophet. Perhaps even the antichrist himself. Just as it was written.

    Need to come up with a better measure of stupidity than Darwin Awards.

    There’s only one cure for stupid. It is what it is.

  59. Ché Pasa

    Welp. It ain’t over till it’s over, and we’re a long way from that.

    The delay in “calling” the election for Biden was interesting, since Arizona and Nevada had realistically already put him over the electoral college top. But no, they (whoever they are) had to wait for Pennsylvania because it’s Biden’s birth state. OK, this was arranged. This was the plan.

    Orange Man Bad is throwing another set of tantrums, but mostly they’re ignored in the elation over Biden’s win. Narrative rules: There’s nobody in the White House to follow his orders, everyone’s sick or gone. He’s alone with his phone, tweeting madly about this and that, screaming at clouds, shaking his stick at all and sundry who come near. Five layers of fences and walls around the White House keep the rabble at bay. Of course it could just as easily turn into his prison if he refuses to GO.

    For his part, Biden and all who matter are saying “nothing fundamental has changed; nor will it.” AOC makes noises about leaving politics. The left is crushed again. Nothing will change. Nothing can change. World without end, amen.

    Lawsuits might not lead to anything but more chaos, not decisions to give the presidency back to Orange Man Bad. Chaos that continues far into the future.

    The end of this soap opera isn’t even close to nigh.

  60. Ché Pasa

    Welp. It ain’t over till it’s over, and we’re a long way from that.

    The delay in “calling” the election for Biden was interesting, since Arizona and Nevada had realistically already put him over the electoral college top. But no, they (whoever they are) had to wait for Pennsylvania because it’s Biden’s birth state. OK, this was arranged. This was the plan.

    Orange Man Bad is throwing another set of tantrums, but mostly they’re ignored in the elation over Biden’s win. Narrative rules: There’s nobody in the White House to follow his orders, everyone’s sick or gone. He’s alone with his phone, tweeting madly about this and that, screaming at clouds, shaking his stick at all and sundry who come near. Five layers of fences and walls around the White House keep the rabble at bay. Of course it could just as easily turn into his prison if he refuses to GO.

    For his part, Biden and all who matter are saying “nothing fundamental has changed; nor will it.” AOC makes noises about leaving politics. The left is crushed again. Nothing will change. Nothing can change. World without end, amen.

    Lawsuits might not lead to anything but more chaos, not decisions to give the presidency back to Orange Man Bad. Chaos that continues far into the future.

    The end of this soap opera isn’t even close to nigh.

  61. Ché Pasa

    Welp. It ain’t over till it’s over, and we’re a long way from that.

    The delay in “calling” the election for Biden was interesting, since Arizona and Nevada had realistically already put him over the electoral college top. But no, they (whoever they are) had to wait for Pennsylvania because it’s Biden’s birth state. OK, this was arranged. This was the plan.

    Orange Man Bad is throwing another set of tantrums, but mostly they’re ignored in the elation over Biden’s win. Narrative rules: There’s nobody in the White House to follow his orders, everyone’s sick or gone. He’s alone with his phone, tweeting madly about this and that, screaming at clouds, shaking his stick at all and sundry who come near. Five layers of fences and walls around the White House keep the rabble at bay. Of course it could just as easily turn into his prison if he refuses to GO.

    For his part, Biden and all who matter are saying “nothing fundamental has changed; nor will it.” AOC makes noises about leaving politics. The left is crushed again. Nothing will change. Nothing can change. World without end, amen.

    Lawsuits might not lead to anything but more chaos, not decisions to give the presidency back to Orange Man Bad. Chaos that continues far into the future.

    The end of this soap opera isn’t even close to nigh.

  62. Stirling S Newberry

    Right now there are all sorts of frames popping up. Most of them are seriously funny. “It was Joe!” is an example: No, sorry it was Trump. Trump can pull a coup! No, sorry the military has to back him and it doesn’t. He will stall in the courts! Doesn’t Nixon v. Kennedy teach you anything? No, the justices will want to keep the powder dry for really unsound legal decisions.

    This doesn’t mean I am particularly happy – these are two failed members of a failed economic theory with a fail political theory who are going to run the most powerful military state – What could go right?

    Get you head back in real space: the are things that can be done – like swiping the Senate – and things that can not be done – Trump remaining. He’s too much of an embarrassment, too many people whose jobs will be lost. Bending an election, sure, breaking a theory, not so much. Polling can be warped but, at this time under these circumstances, it won’t be tossed – it is too useful.

  63. morrisbermanFTW

    My prediction. America is doomed and they deserve it.

  64. Plague Species

    The Establishment is partying likes it’s 1999, quite literally. Thing is, it’s not 1999. It’s 2020 and a very different time. Biden’s bipartisanship days are long gone. The contemporary Republican Party is not the Republican Party of yore and for that matter the Democratic Party is no longer what it once was. It’s a whole new game. The fascism isn’t going away without serious intervention. Asking everyone to hold hands and forgive and forget is not that intervention. Absent an effective intervention, fascism is emboldened and grows the next four years and when it takes power in 2024, it will not relinquish it again until America is no more. Get out now while you can. The earthquake that was Donald Trump created a Tsunami that is still at sea. The water has receded from the shoreline and people are lulled into a false sense of security and are walking around where the water once was as the massive wave of fascism races to shore.

  65. Plague Species

    In fact, now that we’ve gotten a taste of how things are going to go, just as I surmised and expected in fact, I hope Trump manages to win this process and hold on to the presidency and does indeed lock the Bidens and the Clintons and the Obamas up. The audacity of celebrating Kamala as the first “black” vice president. Like Obama, she was not raised “black”. She never “lived” that experience. But the racist Dems, every bit as racist as their onerous Republican counterparts, want you to believe Kamala is “black” because of the color of her skin. Sorry, as**oles, I don’t judge people by the color of their skin, I judge them by their actions. Harris and Biden are responsible for locking up more people of color, especially “blacks”, than any racist Republican could dream of, and they were able to do it because they are racists in Dem clothing. Their campaign slogan should have been, “We’ll Lock Them Up Again” versus “Make America Great Again”. They’ll lock up people of color in droves again while pardoning Trump and his enablers and appeasing and emboldening the festering fascist rot in America. F*ck ’em. Celebrating while people are dropping like flies from this disease is despicable and the celebrations are further spreading COVFEFE-45 more rampantly considering many aren’t wearing masks and are ignoring social distancing.

  66. Hugh

    different clue, re bribery, 18 U.S. Code 221 begs to differ:


    (1) directly or indirectly, corruptly gives, offers or promises anything of value to any public official or person who has been selected to be a public official, or offers or promises any public official or any person who has been selected to be a public official to give anything of value to any other person or entity, with intent—

    (A) to influence any official act; or
    (B) influence such public official or person who has been selected to be a public official to commit or aid in committing, or collude in, or allow, any fraud, or make opportunity for the commission of any fraud, on the United States; or
    (C) to induce such public official or such person who has been selected to be a public official to do or omit to do any act in violation of the lawful duty of such official or person

    shall be fined under this title or imprisoned for not more than two years, or both.

    The code goes on to make plain that anyone involved in such a deal, offering or receiving, has violated the law.

  67. bruce wilder

    @Willy So they were able to precisely engineer losing in a nail biter?

    Do I detect a note of sarcasm?


    I am thinking, Heil Kamala might soon be our mantra. The irony that those adamantly insisting that they were fighting fascism were bringing us fascism will be lost quickly enough.

    @different clue

    Yes. I would demur a bit on the “Administrative State governance-capacity” thing. I agree that the damage done by Trump is serious, just as the damage done by Bush Jr was serious. The problem is that the MBA/credentialled-privilege culture is both at the core of the Democratic Party now and it is also a pervasive disease in the cultures of private and public bureaucratic institutions. The Democrats represent an entitled minority that thinks they are the annoited “majority” and will resist mightily being held to account for performance or even just rational matching of means to ends. These are the people whose idea of a deep reform of health insurance/medical care was a website, a website they took four years to build and then did not work and in the end, just added to the complexity and magnified costs.

    The financialization of the economy is one aspect of a complex emergence of a class of people invested in working the levers of a bureaucracy that is subtly undermining the whole society and economy. That beast, which cannot be made to serve the people or accept accountability for performance, is driving the body politic toward authoritarianism with a combination of its own selfish demands, its smug self-confidence and insular ignorance, its neoliberal denial that any alternatives can be conceived, its manifest failures, and its infamous “resistance”.

    (Sorry for the rant: did not feel it coming on when I started writing a reply)


    One might almost think Democratic idpol was designed to purpose to
    1.) discourage a revival of nationalism as a platform for populist governance
    2.) create a set of upper-class “opinions” that only the elite college-educated would understand the jargon of, and which would nurtue contempt for the hoi polloi by professional-class elites and distrust of academic and professional-class elites by everyone outside those upper-class clubs
    3.) prevent restrictions on immigration

    Funny though that so few in mainstream Media questioned the attempts to revive the Cold War with Russiagate. Apparently, the cosmopolitans were unconcerned about the risks of antagonizing Russia or creating failed states across the Middle East.

    (It is a day for ranting I guess. People celebrating the election of the 78-year old author of much of what is wrong with this country on a platform of restoring a status quo ante of serial catastrophe sets me on edge.)

  68. Ché Pasa

    Proto-fascism is endemic to the USA. Baked in. Anyone who assumes the mantle can institute and operate a fascistic government. It’s happened repeatedly, and really nothing stands in the way of it. The very organization of government itself in this country enables it, and we’ll find if we really pay attention that many governments around the world that have tried to copy he US example very easily fall into the cult of personality/crypto-fascist cesspit.

    Trump is a particularly ugly example, but would we say the same about FDR? If you’re a malefactor of great wealth, absolutely you would. Not because he was using some fascist models, tho. Far from it. They were fine with that. They weren’t fine with being charged for the costs of reviving the US economy and assisting the neediest. Ever since, they’ve been trying to shuck off the burden, and they’ve nearly succeeded.

    Don’t want fascism to rule? Change the system.

  69. Willy

    The system is that we can either pray that speaking in tongues will fend off the plague, or we can buy what the kindly appearing used car artist has to sell.

    I think there’s more than that available today.

    Morning Joe just tried to convince me that America is a centrist nation. As if those who speak in tongues aren’t trying to free America from Biden marxism, and most voters polled want to quit being bullied by a handful of kleptocrats. MSNBC is spending 0% of its airtime on discussing why we got Trump, or how mass divisiveness happen. Fox is hardly different.

    Sorry, but the ‘saner’ others who’ve chosen the side of learned helplessness have also gone round the bend. Once Trump has been driven away in the little white van and the anti-democratic fires from flag wavers cursing in tongues have been extinguished, Biden has an excuse and it’ll be McConnell and his senate henchmen hostaging unity on behalf of the kleptocrats. Or whatever shit. Can’t let it happen.

    Learn how to explain to crazy people what they’re dealing with? I haven’t heard any practical advice.
    I don’t like democratic elites. They are greedy and blind, blind to the lives of those they deem lesser than themselves… But republican elites, I hate more. What do you need?

  70. bruce wilder

    Change “the system”, Ché Pasa ?

    Isn’t that kind of implicit in instituting “fascism”?

    “The system” is always changing, except in your telling, where nothing ever changes.

  71. Willy

    It’s more like change the culture. Crazy people have far too much say these days. But maybe they’re just acting out, doing what comes naturally when the master class sucks at being good masters. I’ve offered that when the crazy people poop out the crazy shit that we rub their noses in it, but they’re telling me that this is wrong. The crazies will only come to fear the hand. But I’m having bad luck sitting them down and gently explaining things to them.

  72. different clue


    Do you have any evidence that Trump ever offered Biden “something of value” in return for getting a pardon from a President Biden, if there is one?

    Do you have any evidence that Biden has requested from Trump anything of value in return for giving Trump a pardon?

    If you have any evidence of either of those two possibilities, please share it with us here. I , for one, will certainly read it.

  73. Ché Pasa


    Proto-fascism is inherent in the system we have. You don’t “change the system” by instituting fascism. It’s already there, sometimes dormant, sometimes active, but never absent.

    “The System” I keep railing about is based on the deeply flawed, anachronistic and elitist Constitution we’re taught to revere and swear fealty to (if employed by the government), as it has been elaborated over the centuries.

    Until that changes to thwart it, we will always be on the cusp of fascist rule, or we will be ruled directly in fascist terms.

    The Constitution is the source of the problem and the prohibition on correcting it.

  74. NL

    Ché Pasa PERMALINK
    –many governments around the world that have tried to copy he US example very easily fall into the cult of personality/crypto-fascist cesspit.–

    So, you believe that the demos/people are fascist? Hitler had supporters, but he was not elected. He was appointed by Hindenburg on the behest of large industrialists. Little doubt, Hitler followed Hindenburg’s wishes and eliminated the multiparty system (including Communists) and literally murdered the Rohm wing of his own party, the wing that advocated for social reforms. In this way, the German oligarchy used Hitler to suppress the populace and prevent any reforms challenging their domination. In the process, of course, they destroyed the country for generations and unleashed the bloodiest war ever.

    Ten years ago I would mouth the same that people are too fickle and stupid and would elect Hitler. But I changed my mind since then. Seems to me now that the oligarchy has to consider itself benevolent and treat the masses with suspicion, hence it is the masses that elected Hitler and not the oligarchs who appointed him. If one looks at the Ancient Greek history, it is always the oligarchies that unleashed terror and murder on the citizenry (as well as invited foreign powers to support them). Some interpret Draco’s laws as a ban on murder by the so-called well-born, i.e., oligarchs, of one another and other citizens. Representative ‘democracy’ has a dark core of mistrust and outright hatred of the people it is supposedly impowers. If anyone can seriously challenge this interpretation of Hitler’s rise, please do so, I would like to hear it.

  75. Hugh

    different clue, my point is that Biden would not offer Trump a pardon because that would be a thing of value illegitimately proffered or accepted. And that’s bribery.

    Not real sure how resisting fascists equates to fascism. That’s just too big a stretch. What’s next? that criticizing Trumpers is a sin?

  76. Hugh

    I agree with Ché Pasa about the Constitution. We are taught to treat it as sacred, not study it. The Framers wrote a document to divide power among themselves, keep it out of the hands of the people, and defend slavery.

  77. different clue


    Well, Obama and Holder gave Immunity and Impunity to many criminals against humanity in the Bush Administration, as well as many financial criminals at the top inside center of the financial industrial complex. They can claim that they oh-so-technically never actually offered pardons, and therefor never black-letter violated laws against bribery or whatever. They merely found their own clever way to stealth undercover offer the very same thing in all-but-name.

    Biden is not as smart as Obama-Holder. It wouldn’t surprise me a bit if Biden just GAVE Trump a pardon because it would be the ” Obama -said-look-forward-not-backward” thing to do. Without even considering any aspect of “offering things of value” at all.

  78. Zachary Smith

    Nobody asked me, but the way I see it negotiations are going on this very moment. Stories abound about all the damage Trump can do before he leaves office. That’s genuine leverage! Then there is all the positive yak-yak about Biden pardoning Trump. IMO this is both a warning to and preparation of the Dem “base” for the event, and a signal the Biden people are open to a deal. Trump is going to demand a LOT, and I truly fear he will get whatever he wants to leave office without a giant ruckus and even more sabotage of the government.

    Hell, they may rehabilitate Trump at a far faster rate than they have George “codpiece commander” Bush.

  79. different clue

    @Zachary Smith,

    Once the elites have determined that they have Trump safely ” in his box” ( remember that phrase being used for Saddam Hussein?), then they will re-habilitate him and his movement as fast as possible.

    They will use it to keep scaring the Petty-PMC-eoisie into desperate ongoing loyalty to the Pink KKK Catfood Democrat Party and its rich owners, donors and patrons. ” Be afraid. Be very afraid. The Boogie TrumpMan is out there somewhere in the dark . . . out there in Rural America . . . . ready to unleash floods of Coaly Rollers in their pickup trucks upon your green leafy Woke neighborhoods. And only we can save you.”

    So the Pink KKK Catfood Sh*tobamacrats will rehabilitate Trump and the Trumpist movement on general “credible boogieman maintainance” principles.

  80. NL

    I want to add a bit to my post above – straight quotes from Wiki.

    “The party [Nazi] was created to draw workers away from communism and into völkisch nationalism.”

    “In July 1919 he [Hitler] was appointed Verbindungsmann (intelligence agent) of an Aufklärungskommando (reconnaissance unit) of the Reichswehr, assigned to influence other soldiers and to infiltrate the German Workers’ Party (DAP). … On the orders of his army superiors, Hitler applied to join the party”

    So, Hitler was not an organic movement but an ‘influence operation’ gone horribly wrong.

  81. Hugh

    The likelihood is that there is going to be divided government, Congressional stalemate, and nothing is going to get done.

    Biden is not going to pardon Trump. There is simply zero reason for it, or evidence of it. Trump and his cronies are fully capable of doing what they need to do to defend themselves as best they can. Trump has also shown daily for four years that he can’t be trusted, And a Biden pardon of Trump would tear a weakened Democratic party apart.

    If for whatever reason Biden didn’t want to pursue Trump and company, all he would have to do is not pursue them. No pardon necessary.

  82. different clue

    . . . “If for whatever reason Biden didn’t want to pursue Trump and company, all he would have to do is not pursue them. No pardon necessary. ” . . .

    Well, yes. That’s the HolderBama model. No muss, no fuss. No pardon, no problem. Just passive-collusive default immunity and impunity. ” Look forward not back, bring us together, bind up the nation’s wounds, you know . . . . the THING!”

  83. Leigh Dundas ~ Conference Call w/Trump Campaign ~ Update @

    She reports on some of the statistical calculations performed by groups of data scientist types.

    Wisconsin voter turnout of ~90% has .00000189 chance of having occurred. (1 / 52 million)

    Apparently, the data fudgers are already at work covering their tracks. See “90% voter turnout in Wisconsin explained as seven Milwaukee districts report higher than 100%”

    Also, not to be overlooked as the cockroaches scatter, is:

    Dr.SHIVA Ayyadurai, MIT PhD. Inventor of Email
    Just filed NEW lawsuit exposing conspiracy between MA Sec. State William Galvin AND National Assoc. of State Election Directors @NASEDorg to conceal destruction of #BallotImages in violation of Federal Law. Below is lawsuit & hearing transcript. Enjoy!

  84. Hugh

    Trump’s narcissism would not allow him to trust to Biden’s mercy.

  85. different clue

    All this talk of Trump using the threat of destroying governmental functions and even physical property to extort a pardon out of Biden reminds me of what I read about the closing days of Nazi Germany on the Western Front.

    When Paris was about to fall to the Allies, Hitler ordered the German General in charge of Paris to destroy Paris entirely in all its aspects. Make the rubble bounce, I suppose. And make the bouncing rubble glow. And make the bouncy glowing rubble bounce some more.

    That German General declined Hitler’s orders and turned Paris over to the Allies entirely intact.

    So if Trump orders some Teams of Navy Frogmen to dynamite and burn down the Smithsonian Museums, they may well decline to follow those orders.

    It also brought to mind images of old black and white movies.

    ” Okay, Joe. Hand over that pardon. And no funny business, or the government gets it, see?”

    And good old Joe would hand it right over, in the black and white movie I am imagining.

  86. Ché Pasa


    So, you believe that the demos/people are fascist?

    Not at all. But they are easily led toward fascism and can be ruled by fascists under the right circumstances. The US constitution and governmental systems make it easier, not harder, for fascists to acquire power and to rule.

    Part of it is our tendency to near-deification of the US president. Cults of personality have surrounded president after president since George Washington. The position itself is inherently that of an elected (or on occasion, appointed) monarch who can, under our system, assume dictatorial power and won’t necessarily be required to relinquish it. “Emergency” after all…

    The People can be convinced — at least for a while — that fascism is Freedom, too, and will go along with it, even if they didn’t vote for it. But the System isn’t up for a vote.

  87. different clue


    If we had strictly analog elections ( analog marks in analog ink on analog legal paper ballots handcounted by analog hand by human counters using their own Mark 1 analog eyeballs, ” ballot image destruction” would not even be a thing.

    We need to scrape all the digital cooties out of our ballot-casting/ ballot-counting system. Make it analog and do it by hand.

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