Can Republicans Win Without Rigging Elections?


It’s a valid question:

Can Republicans Win Without Rigging Elections?

For the second time in my life as a voter, the popular vote has been overridden by the electoral college in the Presidential election.
The electoral college seems to exist only in order to skew elections in favor of rural, hence less educated, voters. 

However, it’s not just the Presidential race..
In nearly all 50 states, Republicans have gerrymandered counties to such an extreme that the popular vote in local races is overridden more often than not; this means that Democrats gain a majority of voters, but Republicans win thanks to their arcane and obtuse gerrymandering..

So, again, the question becomes a fair one:

Can Republicans Win Without Rigging Elections?

It’s worth noting that, for months Mr Trump decried the fact that the election was rigged; little did he realize that the election was indeed rigged, in his favor… Mr Trump is the loser here, technically.

Deny, Deny, Deny – The Right-Wing Mantra


Listening to a story on Texans denying the overwhelming evidence that fracking may cause earthquakes, it occurred to me that it makes sense that Republicans would believe fake news so much more readily than anyone else…

Think about it: they’ve been denying so much truth for so long, that it becomes exceedingly easy for them to believe things that have been entirely conjured from thin air.
Evolution: no such thing! Just read the bible (in the original English, of course)
Paleontology: no such thing – if dinosaurs existed at all, they existed alongside man!
Geology: not true! – the Earth was created 4000 years ago!
Slavery: slaves were so happy! They loved their servitude!
The Holocaust: never happened; Jews invented it to […?]!
9/11: The Jews, again!
Global warming: a Chinese hoax / Al Gore get-rich-quick-scheme!
Obama: a dictator Muslim, of course!
Sandy Hook, and all other school shootings: made up by Hillary’s get-allguns agenda!
Trump: a kind, successful business man, benevolent, selfless, champion of Democracy, of course!

You may laugh — or, more appropriately, vomit a little — but i know for a fact that most Trump supporters believe 95% of the above insane claims..

In this light, how can we deny the power of the right-wing propaganda and misinformation found in their widely circulated fake news outlets (including Fox News, which invented fake news).

Republicans have been denying reality for so long, can they ever re-connect to it?

A Party in Disarray (hint: not the one you think) – Republican Values


It is fascinating to see nearly all Republicans in Congress unabashedly laud Mr Trump’s victory, and its effect on the Republican party. Until now, Republicans have tried, and by and large succeeded, to block nearly all of President Obama’s projects, arguing that Democratic projects go against the conservative ‘small government’ ethos of the Republican party.

Paradoxically, Mr Trump has run on a platform that is nearly antithetical to all that Republicans have claimed as their fundamental ‘conservative’ principles: promises of major infrastructure spending; government intervention in artificially restoring entire industries such as coal; he is even now arguing in favor of keeping the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare).

So why is it that Republicans are so quick to embrace Trump’s victory, if they are so opposed to so many of his policies?

It is now increasingly clear that Republicans are willing to overlook Mr Trump’s significantly antithetical views because of two things: his inclination to put business first, despite his campaign rhetoric to the contrary; and his reliance on hatred as a tool to bring white people together.

Mr Trump’s behavior since the election leaves no doubt that the is placing a great emphasis on corporate welfare, providing immense tax cuts for large corporations, and leaving the people to deal with the inevitable immense debt increase this will cause. 
The argument that these huge corporate tax cuts will ‘pay for themselves’ has been demonstrated to be a myth.
Mr Trump’s commitment to this business first approach can also bee seen in his recent dealings with his own businesses. Rather than distancing himself from his businesses, he is poised to bring an unprecedented level corruption to the White House. Indeed, while he is not even yet in office, he has been applying pressure to forward his personal financial interests at home and abroad.

Finally, few Republicans seem to acknowledge that Mr Trump is revealing the Republican party’s reliance on hate.
Most of his cabinet appointments have ties with white supremacist groups, which sends a clear message: the Republican party is now explicitly hateful; bigotry, misogyny, xenophobia, homophobia, and all the other forms of hate are now to be outwardly embraced by Republicans…
The long-maintained, yet thinly veiled, pretense that Republican opposition to the Obama Presidency can now be dropped; it was always about race. It is now obvious that Republicans were never that serious about their ideas of ‘small government’…

So, while the Democratic Party has a serious messaging problem with its inability to get its message to the woking and middle classes, the Republican party has a much more fundamental problem: its identity is swiftly being shown as the party of white hate. It sounds to me like the party in disarray is not the one people think…

Democrats, who’s that? (A Gentle Reminder)


It is now undeniable that the Democratic party is shattered and powerless: all branches of the federal government, as well as most state governments, have overwhelming Republican majorities and soon the US Supreme Court will be irreparably reactionary for generations to come.

Sub-par primary and secondary education, combined with powerful reactionary propaganda campaigns, are the two major factors that enabled the crushing defeat of all that is good and fair in the United States.
Anti-progressive propaganda has been mentioned here and here before, and i’ll probably come back to it soon. However, we must note that the disastrous state of public education, due to the Reagan-inspired Republican agenda of increasingly deep budget cuts, has produced a generation of under-educated people who turn to the easy, sensationalistic answers offered by the extreme right (remember Trump’s comment: ‘we love the poorly educated‘).

So, let’s set the record straight: what does it mean to be a Democrat, and what does the Democratic Party stand for?

Democratic presidents won both World Wars (W. Wilson and Franklin Delano Roosevelt), got America out of the two worst economic disasters of the 20th and 21st Centuries (F.D.R. and B. Obama), B. Clinton presided over the largest growth in the US economy since F.D.R, and Lyndon B. Johnson ushered in a new age of Civil Rights.

Today’s Democratic Party is largely founded on the ideals and model set by Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Lyndon B. Johnson.
That is to say, the Democratic Party prioritizes the needs of the working class (including middle class and skilled professionals).
Economically, by supporting organized labor, so that workers get the best possible deal when dealing with management; by supporting efforts to impose living wages; by placing an emphasis on growth, innovation, development, rather than unequal distribution of revenues in large corporations.
Socially, by ensuring that all US Citizens get the same opportunities, respect, and rights. This means focusing on equal educational opportunities, fair housing, and fair treatment under the law.
Democrats also believe that the government needs to regulate markets to ensure their fairness and stability; the same goes with public utilities such as power, water, and healthcare.

The problem is that the Democratic Party is simply terrible at communicating its agenda.

It is completely aberrant that the working class would trust Republicans to improve their chances in today’s and tomorrow’s economies when Republicans have so consistently devastated the rights of the working class!

Economically, Republicans have sought to annihilate organized labor; increase the share of profits that go to CEOs and shareholders at the expense of wages, growth, investment, and research.
The central Republican idea that tax cuts for the rich bring jobs is a proven fallacy! Tax cuts for the rich do the opposite: they increase hoarding of wealth, they reduce investment, they reduce growth, they reduce research (but don’t just take my word for it).
Also central to Republican dogma is the fallacious notion of corporate efficiency. 
Socially, Republicans have been crippling the power and influence of the Federal Government in order to roll back Civil Rights laws and reinstate racial, sexual, and social discrimination practices. This is done to guarantee the availability of cheap labor: as long as you keep a large enough amount of people in poverty, you can get them do do just about any job for dramatically unfair wages, and in dramatically unfair conditions!

On that note, how can anyone in the working class believe, for example, that Mr Trump would do anything for them?!
His track record, which i’ve examined before, demonstrates that he will only ever seek to enrich himself, and do so at the expense of the working class in particular, and all others in general. But i digress…

Finally, Republicans have been, since the Reagan era, on a deregulation bender that has provoked 3 massive recessions, and wild economic instability. Thanks to Republican efforts at deregulation, healthcare, electricity, water, power have reached unprecedented dizzying high costs. The stock market has been given over to speculators, which prompted large corporations to cease to invest, to grow, to do research, opting instead for the short-term optics of massive cuts.

It is simply a fact that Republicans have always been, and will always be, looking out for the interests of the owners of the means of production.
It is also a fact that only the Democratic Party has consistently sought to improve the quality of life of the working, middle class, and skilled professionals.
Finally, it is an absolute fact that the agenda of the Republicans is fundamentally and ‘big league’ opposed to the needs of the working or middle class.

Roger Ailes’ Ultimate Triumph: The Downfall Of America and Post-Truth Politics


Roger Ailes, the creator and former leader of Fox News, more than anyone else, should be ‘credited’ for the Mr Trump’s victory.

Indeed, Ailes has been a master at creating a ‘news’ narrative (whether based on fact or fiction), and sticking to it no matter how little evidence supports that narrative, or even how much evidence there is to discredit it. 
The mere fact of sticking to a largely fictitious yet very sensationalistic story made it so that proper fact-based news organizations could not ignore the claims made by Fox News, and felt the need to examine those claims to show what, if anything, was based on fact, and what was not.
This turned proper fact-based news organizations into mere echo chambers for Fox News.
Indeed, it turns out that it didn’t matter what, for example, the New York Times, had to say about this or that outlandish claim by Fox News, as long as they said anything! 

Liberals are focusing their attention on Steve Bannon, the former head of Breitbart News, the ‘alt-right’ extremist propaganda organization.
However, Mr Bannon merely reproduced Mr Ailes’ playbook, with one minor alteration: drop any pretense of ‘fair and balanced’ or journalistic integrity, and dedicate their resources fully to entirely fabricated propaganda.
As i have mentioned in a previous post, the rise of social media, particularly with Facebook’s irresponsible approach to ‘news’, has made it so that Bannon and Ailes’ fabricated propaganda found massive audiences much less concerned with fact than with a good yarn.

If liberal ideas are ever to find their way to the common man again, and it is very doubtful (see upcoming post), it will first be necessary for proper fact-based news organizations and social media organizations to stop lending credence to the increasingly fantastical stories coming from right-wing propaganda outlets.
Note that i am, of course, not proposing a ban on right-wing thought; i am merely saying that it is time cut the cancer of post-truth politics at the root.

Fantasies of hate and fear…


While it seems that the people who voted for Trump did so out of racism, misogyny, xenophobia, and good-old-fashioned raw hatred, that is only a part of the story.

They voted out of fear.

The right-wing (now alt-right) decision makers at media outlets such as Fox News, Breitbart News, etc.., along with the Republican party, have been whipping people into frenzied fear ever since 9/11, and it has just paid off in a major way.
This last election, and the complete takeover of all branches the US government by the ultra-right-wing is the direct end result of years of relentless fearmongering through any means necessary, including bold-faced lying.

How did we get here?

The answer is clear, though very complex. Indeed, though the means are obvious, the motives are less so.

The means, of course, are the aforementioned ‘alternative’ right-wing ‘news’ outlets (at least they portend to be), which have resorted to outright lying, fabricating stories, and repeatedly insisting, sometimes for years, that these fabrications are true.

Take, for example, the myth that several cities within the Continental US have been taken over by immigrant and/or refugee Muslims and are now ruled extra-judiciously under sharia law
While this story may seem absurd to any educated person (back to that later), it is most certainly not; see this piece by This American Life.
These ‘alternative media’ appeal to people who have not benefited from a quality education (remember when Trump said: ‘we love the uneducated’, that’s what he meant). Sadly, the US has may people who are kept in poverty and ignorance thanks to unrelenting Republican cuts to education budgets, and imposition of ridiculous anti-scientific religious propaganda from their earliest ages.
It is no surprise, then, that people who have been told their whole life that science does not actually offer any valid answers, that those considered by academia to be experts actually have no idea what they are talking about, that truth, in effect, is a mere point of view, would turn to outlets that offer wackadoo fabrications as solid truth.

What’s worse is that right-wing extremists and the ‘alt-right’, have used web sites and social media extraordinarily effectively. Sadly, ‘traditional’ news outlets have largely failed to have a clear vision, or any real success, on any digital media (aside maybe from NPR and its proliferation of high-quality podcasts).
The problem is that the rational exposition of facts is far less attractive to the uneducated than wild and scary fantasies. What’s more, social media sites like facebook allow people to remain in these ‘bubbles of fantasy’ that they share with like-minded people, and are never confronted with reality or rational thought.

Of course, there is motive. I don’t want to be seen as saying that i believe that all the influential Republicans and right-wing media moguls like Roger Ailes got together at the creation of Fox News and laid some sort of plan…
It’s more of a collection of converging self-interests; clearly, the Republican party, at least since its opposition to FDR, has been looking out exclusively for the interests of the ultra-wealthy. All while attempting to convince ‘regular people’ (or the middle class, if you prefer) that they really do try to defend ‘the little guy’. Note that i will discuss this contradiction in another post.

Once we get people to think rationally about politics (which is in their own self-interest), we’ll be able to move forward. However, in this current environment to fearmongering, i have trouble seeing how it’ll ever happen…

Democracy to dictatorship, for dummies


How do you turn the world-leading democracy into a hate-obsessed dictatorship?
Vote Republican, of course!


If you want the more complete manual to destroy your democracy, here you go:

1 – Create a fake news media channel that portends to be ‘Fair and Balanced’, but promotes only: the most egregious lies; wild and unsubstantiated conspiracy theories; massive hatred, bigotry, and racism. Oh, and when real fact-oriented media outlets point out your lies, just say ‘i’m not lying, they’re lying’ – simply repeat as needed.

2 – Get your entire party to undermine the very democracy they pretend to defend by consistently and virulently opposing any progress, passing no laws, shutting down government, etc..

3 – Get the same people listed in 1 and 2 to then bemoan the fact that the system no longer works: no laws are passed and the government keeps shutting down.. Then tell people they need to give more power to those who’ve been making sure that nothing works, so that they can ‘tear it all down’.

4 – Infiltrate and corrupt the highest law enforcement entities so that they can launch baseless investigations timed perfectly to cast doubt on your opponents’ credibility. Do it over and over and over again, never mind the fact that nothing ever turns up because one is always guilty until proven innocent in the court of public opinion. In fact, why not simply break the law and open a completely false investigation as people are voting!

5 – Get a nonsense-spouting idiotic failed businessman to run for the highest office based on pure hatred, racism, misogyny and xenophobia (make sure he’s still rich and entitled from his massive inheritance, though). Make sure he offers no real or concrete solutions, so that people imagine and project upon him their own desires. Also make sure that he lies so much about so many things that even the most dogged truth-seeking media simply cease to call attention to his lies.

6 – Enjoy the Republican way of life..