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Has U.S. Democracy Been Trumped? Bernie Sanders wants to know who owns America?

#17081 User is offline   johnu 

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Posted 2020-November-24, 04:37

View PostWinstonm, on 2020-November-23, 18:26, said:

Normal here is racist for about 45% of the population. Not overt racism. White privilege is the order of the day. Few wear hoods or armbands. There is a reason the Republican party developed the "southern strategy", and why it has been so successful. That crap about guns, socialism, and taxes is simply code for "don't let them have what is rightfully ours".

Exactly!

They (Republican voters) need their guns to defend themselves against the black and brown hordes that have think have invaded the country. It makes no difference that those most likely victims of 2nd amendment guns are the owners and the family and friends of the owners.

They are against socialism because they don't want "their" tax dollars going to the black and brown hordes that they think have invaded the country. It makes no difference that white people are the biggest recipients of social programs.

They are against taxes because taxes fund "socialism" and we know why they are against socialism.
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#17082 User is offline   johnu 

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Posted 2020-November-24, 05:22

Rachel Maddow Rings The Alarm On How Trump’s ‘Setting The Place On Fire’ As He Leaves

This is along the lines of the Manchurian President ordering the post office to destroy hundreds of mail sorting machines and implement mail slowdown policies to obstruct mail in ballots. In the case, it directly affects national security.

Quote

As one example, Maddow noted how the Trump White House had earlier in the day officially withdrawn the United States from the Open Skies Treaty which allows 34 nations to conduct observation flights over each other’s territories.

And, the anchor explained, President-elect Joe Biden’s incoming administration will find it tough to rejoin the treaty — because the Trump administration has reportedly ordered for the specialized aircraft the U.S. uses in its flights to be destroyed.


If the 2 highly specialized observation planes are destroyed, it could take literally years for new ones to be built and outfitted with necessary surveillance gear before they are ready to fly over Russia and other non friendly countries. This actually sounds like something Putin ordered
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#17083 User is offline   kenberg 

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Posted 2020-November-24, 07:53

After four years of chaos, almost anything is better. For example, I was not even aware of The Open Skies Treaty. It sounds like a good idea, sabotaging it in his last days in office is one more of the almost uncountable number of irresponsible choices that seem to come so naturally to our current resident. But I imagine we will cope. Trump's actions are petulant. More to cope with.

Biden's plan is to get highly competent people into positions where they have relevant experience to bring to current problems. What an idea! Gee, how did he ever come up with such an extraordinary plan? I can hope that I do not in fact have to know any arguments for and against The Open Skies Treaty, rather I can trust that some sane, intelligent, sensible people are dealing with it. I am not praising my own ignorance, simply acknowledging that there are many things that I know little or nothing about, and I look forward to such issues being managed by people who do know something. And, in particular, not managed by Donald Trump.
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#17084 User is offline   cherdano 

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Posted 2020-November-24, 09:06

View Postshyams, on 2020-November-23, 08:17, said:

By the way, this particular betting market is still open AND is paying 4% on Biden. Given that the market is not likely to last beyond 15 Dec (and it could easily end much earlier), in effect one is being paid an annualised retutn of 40%-80% "risk-free" --- the only risk is the vagaries of the American political system.

You can still get 2% for Biden to win the popular vote...
The easiest way to count losers is to line up the people who talk about loser count, and count them. -Kieran Dyke
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#17085 User is online   Winstonm 

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Posted 2020-November-24, 09:56

View Postkenberg, on 2020-November-24, 07:53, said:

After four years of chaos, almost anything is better. For example, I was not even aware of The Open Skies Treaty. It sounds like a good idea, sabotaging it in his last days in office is one more of the almost uncountable number of irresponsible choices that seem to come so naturally to our current resident. But I imagine we will cope. Trump's actions are petulant. More to cope with.

Biden's plan is to get highly competent people into positions where they have relevant experience to bring to current problems. What an idea! Gee, how did he ever come up with such an extraordinary plan? I can hope that I do not in fact have to know any arguments for and against The Open Skies Treaty, rather I can trust that some sane, intelligent, sensible people are dealing with it. I am not praising my own ignorance, simply acknowledging that there are many things that I know little or nothing about, and I look forward to such issues being managed by people who do know something. And, in particular, not managed by Donald Trump.


The question I already have is: How do we prevent another Trump-like presidency?

I believe it was Jennifer Rubin who the other day wrote an opinion piece that to me made much sense. The piece described the Republican party as having been cleaved in half. The suggestion was that the moderate half and the Democrats in Congress band together to force though legislation while portraying the Trumpian half as ineffective.

We need two parties. We don't need obstructionist, power-mad, Trump-loving Republicans. I hope the idea takes hold to work together and I really don't care which party takes credit. We will all win if the radicalized, Taliban-right is vanquished.
"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter.
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#17086 User is offline   hrothgar 

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Posted 2020-November-24, 11:18

View PostWinstonm, on 2020-November-24, 09:56, said:


I believe it was Jennifer Rubin who the other day wrote an opinion piece that to me made much sense. The piece described the Republican party as having been cleaved in half. The suggestion was that the moderate half and the Democrats in Congress band together to force though legislation while portraying the Trumpian half as ineffective.



I think that Rubin is making some fundamental mistakes about Republican primary voters
Alderaan delenda est
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#17087 User is online   Winstonm 

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Posted 2020-November-24, 13:23

View Posthrothgar, on 2020-November-24, 11:18, said:

I think that Rubin is making some fundamental mistakes about Republican primary voters




This is probably accurate for the House but is it for the Senate? The true nut-cases - Gaetz, Jordan, Nunes - are concentrated in the House where gerrymandered districts can get primary whack-jobs from a whack-job challenger if the incumbent whack-job fails to whack and job enough to satisfy the whack-job voters in the all-whack-job district.

The Senators follow along to a degree but only to the degree of whacking.

However, as long as the House is Democratic and the Senate is not too far out of bounds - let's say Dem win one of two in Georgia, then it only takes 1 Republican Senator to side with the Dems. Hopefully, if 3 or 4 do so early on, it might create a tsunami of unrest against the others.

I still believe the whack-jobs are the minority - even in their own party. They just get all, and I mean ALL, of the publicity. Shame on media, for that.

PS: Rubin's mistake was probably in math. It is more likely to be 10% than 50%.
"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter.
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#17088 User is online   Winstonm 

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Posted 2020-November-24, 13:34

I only hope these misfits learn that their actions have real life consequences, and I applaud the Representative from N.J.

Quote

Rep. Bill Pascrell Jr. (D-N.J.) filed complaints Friday in five states against Giuliani and 22 other lawyers working with the Trump campaign, calling for them to be stripped of their law licenses for filing "frivolous" lawsuits and allegedly engaging in "conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit, or misrepresentation."


Here are some of the real world consequences: from the WaPo:




Quote

These are challenging times for foreigners whose job it is to interpret American politics for people in other countries.....

....Trump’s accusations distinguish this election from the previous eight the OSCE has observed, said Kari Henriksen, a member of Norway’s parliament who headed the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly’s group of observers.

“People have big expectations of the U.S. as a good, functional democracy,” she said. “Therefore, it is astonishing that we experience this kind of mistrust from a president when the U.S. is the leading country in the world regarding democracy. That is one of the issues that makes this very, very special.”




"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter.
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#17089 User is offline   johnu 

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Posted 2020-November-24, 14:06

View PostWinstonm, on 2020-November-24, 13:23, said:

This is probably accurate for the House but is it for the Senate? The true nut-cases - Gaetz, Jordan, Nunes - are concentrated in the House where gerrymandered districts can get primary whack-jobs from a whack-job challenger if the incumbent whack-job fails to whack and job enough to satisfy the whack-job voters in the all-whack-job district.

Well, there are about 4X the number of representatives compared to senators, so there are going to be a lot more nut jobs in the House. That being said, there are Cotton, Cruz, Ernst, Graham, Imhofe, R Johnson, Kennedy, Lee, Loeffler, McConnell, Paul, Perdue, Roberts, Rubio, Scott in the Senate that are dedicated Trump Stooges and just as wacky as those in the House. TBH, I could have listed every single Republican senator in the whack-job category, with the exception of Romney.
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#17090 User is online   Winstonm 

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Posted 2020-November-24, 14:26

View Postjohnu, on 2020-November-24, 14:06, said:

Well, there are about 4X the number of representatives compared to senators, so there are going to be a lot more nut jobs in the House. That being said, there are Cotton, Cruz, Ernst, Graham, Imhofe, R Johnson, Kennedy, Lee, Loeffler, McConnell, Paul, Perdue, Roberts, Rubio, Scott in the Senate that are dedicated Trump Stooges and just as wacky as those in the House. TBH, I could have listed every single Republican senator in the whack-job category, with the exception of Romney.


For those without access to the Washington Post, here is an excerpt from the Jennifer Rubin editorial being discussed:



Quote

If pro-democracy Republicans want to recover their party, they should consider primary challenges to pro-Trump authoritarians, independent runs for state and federal office, and even formation of a new party or movement. They can use their leverage in state legislatures and in Congress and refuse to automatically caucus with Republicans. Romney, Collins, Murkowski, Toomey and Sasse, for example, hold the balance of power in a narrowly divided Senate. They could insist on up-or-down votes on Cabinet appointees, a stimulus bill, a funding bill for vaccinations and legislation on executive branch reforms (e.g., a legal requirement for presidential candidates to release taxes or penalties for Cabinet officials who refuse to comply with subpoenas). If they are bold, they might seek to patch up the holes in the voting system Trump exposed. They should consider severe penalties for attempts to influence voting officials to change results and for state officials who seek to overturn the popular vote. They need to update the 1887 Electoral Count Act to, among other things, ensure slates of electors match the popular vote winner in each state.

We, in effect, have three parties now: The Democratic Party, the Anti-Democracy Trump Party and the Pro-Democracy Republican Party. Once the Anti-Democracy Trump Party is marginalized, we might have functional government again. The Democratic Party and the Pro-Democracy Republican Party should put their heads together and devise a strategy to bring that about — quickly, and certainly before 2024.




"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter.
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#17091 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2020-November-24, 15:40

The China strategy America needs by The Economist:

Quote

President Joe Biden should aim to strike a grand bargain with America’s democratic allies

The achievement of the Trump administration was to recognise the authoritarian threat from China. The task of the Biden administration will be to work out what to do about it.

Donald Trump’s instinct was for America to run this fight single-handed. Old allies were henchmen, not partners. As Joe Biden prepares his China strategy (see article), he should choose a different path. America needs to strike a grand bargain with like-minded countries to pool their efforts. The obstacles to such a new alliance are great, but the benefits would be greater.

To see why, consider how the cold war against China is different from the first one. The rivalry with the Soviet Union was focused on ideology and nuclear weapons. The new battlefield today is information technology: semiconductors, data, 5g mobile networks, internet standards, artificial intelligence (ai) and quantum computing. All those things will help determine whether America or China has not just the military edge (see article), but also the more dynamic economy. They could even give one of the rivals an advantage in scientific research.

The first cold war created separate looking-glass worlds. The protagonists in the second are interconnected. That is partly a result of China’s integration into the global economy, especially after it joined the World Trade Organisation (wto) in 2001. But it also stems from the network efficiencies of many tech businesses, which reward size and spread. And it reflects how hard it is for any one country to master the full range of specialisms in the tech economy. In chips, say, American or British designs may be made in Taiwanese plants, using Japanese and Dutch equipment with German lenses before being assembled in Chinese factories. It is no accident that autarkic North Korea can build nukes but not advanced computers.

The Chinese Communist Party has understood that tech is the path to power. China is blessed with a vast market, ambition and plenty of hard-working talent. The party is supercharging the efforts of Chinese firms with subsidies and industrial espionage. Aware of how scale matters, China is touting its technologies by securing export contracts, promoting itself as a digital power using the Belt and Road Initiative and waging a campaign of pro-China standards-setting in global bodies.

Mr Trump’s abrasive solo response has had some successes. He has browbeaten some allies to stop buying gear for 5g networks from Huawei, a Chinese firm. And by threatening sanctions on chipmakers who supply Huawei, he has damaged it.

But in the long run this approach favours China. It has already accelerated China’s efforts to create its own world-class chip industry—though that could easily take a decade or more. More important, if a bullying America always focuses solely on its own narrow interests, it will drive away the very allies that can help it stay ahead in tech. Europe is increasingly unwilling to leave itself open to American pressure. The European Union’s highest court has twice restricted the transfer of data to America, where they may be picked over by the intelligence agencies. And European policymakers have announced plans to impose rules on the cloud, to impose digital taxes on American tech giants and to limit foreign takeovers—including, potentially, American ones.

A grand bargain would turn that conflict with Europe into collaboration (see Briefing). Rather than be consumed by squabbles, the allies could share an approach to issues like taxation, takeover rules and supply chains. For example, Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation (gdpr) is on the way to becoming a de facto standard outside Europe. With closer collaboration in intelligence, the alliance could be more alert to security threats from Chinese hackers and tech firms. By co-ordinating their efforts on critical technologies, they could specialise rather than duplicate research. By diversifying supply chains and vetting each link they can protect themselves from accidental or malevolent disruptions. By working together on technical standards such as Openran, which uses mostly off-the-shelf hardware for 5g networks, they can create a favourable environment for their own companies. Crucially, by collaborating on ethical norms over, say, facial recognition, they can protect their societies.

Instead of leaving America isolated, a grand bargain would help it keep ahead in the race for tech dominance by bringing it the gains of closer co-operation with like-minded countries. The whole alliance would be boosted by the tech industry’s formidable network effects. A bargain would also leave America more open to cross-border scientific collaboration and immigration, vital for a place that thrives on the contributions of foreign students, many of whom stay on to carry out research or work in tech. Such openness is a strength that China lacks.

Some people argue that co-operation of this sort needs a treaty, an institution like nato or the wto. But that would take a long time to set up. What it would possess in gravitas it would lack in flexibility. A grouping like an enlarged g7 would be more adaptable and less clumsy.

Either way, striking a grand bargain will be hard. For one thing, America would need to acknowledge that it is not as dominant as it was when it set up global governance after the second world war. It would have to be willing to make concessions to its allies right now—over privacy, taxation and some details of industrial policy, say—in order to protect its system of government in the long term. For the strategy to be credible abroad, there would need to be bipartisan consensus in Washington.

America’s allies would have to make concessions, too. They would have to trust a country which, under Mr Trump, has sometimes looked on the transatlantic alliance with contempt. Some Europeans would have to temper their dream of becoming a superpower that stands apart from both China and America.

Yet that European dream has always looked far-fetched. And if anything can overcome divisions in Washington, China can. Moreover, the sacrifices would be worth it. A grand bargain would help focus competition with China on tech, potentially enabling detente in areas where collaboration is essential, such as curbing global warming, health and, as with the Soviet Union, arms control. A grand bargain could make the world safer by making it more predictable. When superpowers are set on a collision course, that is something profoundly to be wished for.

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#17092 User is offline   kenberg 

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Posted 2020-November-24, 15:45

I think Biden is off to a good start. The Dems now have a couple of years to convince voters that the Democratic Party is a good choice. This will require moving forward, forming good plans, successfully implementing good plans. If they cannot do this, nobody will listen much as to just why. So let's hope that they can.

As for Jennifer Rubin, maybe right, maybe wrong, but I doubt any Republican strategist is thinking "Oh, I just can't decide what to do. I guess I'll just do whatever Jennifer Rubin says".
Ken
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#17093 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2020-November-24, 18:17

For the "it's racism?" files:

Posted Image

Matt Yglesias said:

If you known DC this map sure tells a story … Trump down basically everywhere except the poorest blackest neighborhoods east of the Anacostia River

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#17094 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2020-November-24, 21:24

Alexander Burns at NYT said:

As President Trump’s efforts to overturn the 2020 election have steadily disintegrated, the country appears to have escaped a doomsday scenario in the campaign’s epilogue: Since Nov. 3, there have been no tanks in the streets or widespread civil unrest, no brazen intervention by the judiciary or a partisan state legislature. Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s obvious victory has withstood Mr. Trump’s peddling of conspiracy theories and his campaign of groundless lawsuits.

In the end — and the postelection standoff instigated by Mr. Trump and his party is truly nearing its end — the president’s attack on the election wheezed to an anticlimax. It was marked not by dangerous new political convulsions but by a letter from an obscure Trump-appointed bureaucrat, Emily W. Murphy of the General Services Administration, authorizing the process of formally handing over the government to Mr. Biden.

For now, the country appears to have avoided a ruinous breakdown of its electoral system.

Next time, Americans might not be so lucky.

While Mr. Trump’s mission to subvert the election has so far failed at every turn, it has nevertheless exposed deep cracks in the edifice of American democracy and opened the way for future disruption and perhaps disaster. With the most amateurish of efforts, Mr. Trump managed to freeze the passage of power for most of a month, commanding submissive indulgence from Republicans and stirring fear and frustration among Democrats as he explored a range of wild options for thwarting Mr. Biden.

He never came close to achieving his goal: Key state officials resisted his entreaties to disenfranchise huge numbers of voters, and judges all but laughed his legal team out of court.

Ben Ginsberg, the most prominent Republican election lawyer of his generation, said he doubted any future candidates would attempt to replicate Mr. Trump’s precise approach, because it has been so unsuccessful. Few candidates and election lawyers, Mr. Ginsberg suggested, would regard Rudolph W. Giuliani and Sidney Powell — the public faces of Mr. Trump’s litigation — as the authors of an ingenious new playbook.

“If in a few months, we look back and see that this Trump strategy was just an utter failure, then it’s not likely to be copied,” said Mr. Ginsberg, who represented former President George W. Bush in the 2000 election standoff. “But the system was stress-tested as never before.”

That test, he said, revealed enough vague provisions and holes in American election law to make a crisis all too plausible. He pointed in particular to the lack of uniform standards for the timely certification of elections by state authorities, and the uncertainty about whether state legislatures had the power to appoint their own electors in defiance of the popular vote. The 2020 election, he said, “should be a call for some consideration of those issues.”

Yet even without precipitating a full-blown constitutional crisis, Mr. Trump has already shattered the longstanding norm that a defeated candidate should concede quickly and gracefully and avoid contesting the results for no good reason. He and his allies also rejected the longstanding convention that the news media should declare a winner, and instead exploited the fragmentation of the media and the rise of platforms like Twitter and Facebook to encourage an alternative-reality experience for his supporters.

The next Republican candidate to lose a close election may find some voters expecting him or her to mimic Mr. Trump’s conduct, and if a Democrat were to adopt the same tactics, the G.O.P. would have no standing to complain.

Still more important, legal and political experts said, is the way Mr. Trump identified perilous pressure points within the system. Those vulnerabilities, they said, could be manipulated to destabilizing effect by someone else, in a closer election — perhaps one that featured real evidence of tampering, or foreign interference, or an outcome that delivers a winner who was beaten handily in the popular vote but scored a razor-thin win in the Electoral College.

In those scenarios, it might not be such a long-shot gambit for a losing candidate to attempt to halt certification of results through low-profile state and county boards, or to bestir state legislators to appoint a slate of electors or to pressure political appointees in the federal government to block a presidential transition.

Indeed, Mr. Trump managed to intrude on normal election procedures in several states. He summoned Michigan Republican leaders to the Oval Office as his allies floated the idea of appointing pro-Trump electors from the state, which Mr. Biden carried by more than 150,000 votes. And he inspired an onslaught from the right against Georgia’s Republican secretary of state, Brad Raffensperger, who declined to affirm Mr. Trump’s false claims of ballot tampering. Though Mr. Raffensperger oversaw a fair election, both of Georgia’s Republican senators, channeling the president, called for his resignation.

Michael Li, senior counsel at the Brennan Center for Justice, said the country had experienced a “‘Lord of the Flies’ moment” that revealed just how willing some powerful actors were to enable an undisguised effort to sabotage a free and fair election.

“It’s easy to laugh at the Trump challenges, just because they’ve been so out there,” Mr. Li said. “But what’s scary is, you step back from that a bit and see how many people were willing to go along with it until fairly deep in the process.”

“There will be closer elections, ultimately,” he added. “This one wasn’t very close. The fact that people are willing to go down dangerous paths should give us all pause.”

It remains to be seen whether Mr. Trump will wind up as a singularly sore loser or as the herald of a new Wild West era in American electioneering. There have been far closer elections this century — including the 2000 vote that plunged the country into a weekslong review of Florida’s rickety vote-counting procedures, and the 2016 election that made Mr. Trump president through a historically wide split between the popular vote and the Electoral College. But no one else has entertained the corrosive tactics Mr. Trump has sought to employ.

Like numerous other presidential schemes over the last four years, Mr. Trump’s plot against the election unraveled in part because of external circumstances — the large number of swing states Mr. Biden carried, for instance — and in part because of his own clumsiness. His lawyers and political advisers never devised an actual strategy for reversing the popular vote in multiple big states, relying on a combination of televised chest-thumping and wild claims of big-city election fraud for which there was no evidence.

Barbara J. Pariente, the former chief justice of the Florida Supreme Court who oversaw the state-level battle over the 2000 vote, said it was essential for Congress to clarify the process by which elections are conducted and resolved or risk greater calamity in the coming years. Mr. Trump’s team, she said, had already breached fundamental standards of legal conduct by filing cases seeking to throw out huge numbers of votes “without any evidence of impropriety, and then asking a court to look further into it.”

“As I look at what is happening now, I think it’s a real attack on our American system of democracy, and it is causing tens of millions of Americans to doubt the outcome,” Ms. Pariente said. “It has grave implications, in my view, for the future of this country.”

Even if Congress were to impose a clearer set of election procedures, however, there is reason to doubt whether the rules could reverse the total-war mind-set Mr. Trump has modeled. In failure, he has created a road map for his own party — or even, under certain circumstances, for a grievance-laden Democrat — to wage a bitter-end fight against an unfavorable election result, with the support of loud voices in the right-wing media and much of his party’s conservative base.

And it is that last cohort, the millions of voters who remain loyal to Mr. Trump and who appear largely indifferent to the facts of the vote tally and the niceties of legal procedure, that represents the most potent kind of weapon for this defeated president, or another executive who might follow his example.

Shawn Rosenberg, a professor of political and psychological science at the University of California, Irvine, who has written pessimistically about the trajectory of American democracy, said Mr. Trump has been highly effective at exploiting the gap between the complexity of the country’s political system and the more rudimentary grasp most voters have of their government. For the average partisan, he said, issues of political norms and procedures were “very abstract” and far less important than simply winning — an impulse Mr. Trump stoked to the detriment of democratic institutions.

Mr. Rosenberg warned that while Mr. Trump’s political opposition had managed to unseat an incumbent — a rare feat in the nation’s presidential system — the election was not the kind of overwhelming rout that might have proven American democracy “invulnerable” to the kind of erosion on display in newer democracies like Poland and India. That was something of a disappointment to Mr. Trump’s critics on both the left and right, he said.

“Their hope was that he had gone so far that he would awaken this awareness and resolve in the American people,” Mr. Rosenberg said. “And clearly that was not the case for roughly 74 million of them.”

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#17095 User is online   Winstonm 

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Posted 2020-November-25, 09:28

Anyone else notice how quiet and peaceful it has been for the past few days? Reminds me of a toothache I had years ago - bliss sometimes is nothing more than the absence of pain.
"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter.
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#17096 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2020-November-25, 09:37

Matt Yglesias said:

Two Trumpisms:

— “Abandon Paul Ryan’s vision of welfare state rollback while giving corporate America tax cuts and regulatory favors but TALK exclusively about cultural issues” seems effective.

— Donald Trump personally is not effective

Nate Silver said:

Thesis that might be worth exploring:

Trumpism isn't a terribly effective electoral strategy—its track record is mediocre at best, even considering how much overperforming with noncollege whites helps with the Senate etc—but it's not clear that the GOP's alternatives are better.

Romney ran before his time.
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#17097 User is offline   shyams 

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Posted 2020-November-25, 10:01

View PostWinstonm, on 2020-November-25, 09:28, said:

Anyone else notice how quiet and peaceful it has been for the past few days? Reminds me of a toothache I had years ago - bliss sometimes is nothing more than the absence of pain.

This is the lull before the storm ;)
Sidney Powell is all eager about her lawsuit today which (she says) will unleash the kraken :) :)
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#17098 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2020-November-25, 13:37

Glenn Thrush at NYT said:

Georgia’s secretary of state, Brad Raffensperger, a Republican who resisted calls to delay President-elect Joseph R. Biden’s narrow victory in a once solid-red stronghold, is accusing President Trump of throwing him “under the bus.”

“By all accounts, Georgia had a wildly successful and smooth election,” Mr. Raffensperger, a civil engineer who was first elected in 2018, wrote in an op-ed published Wednsesday in USA Today.

“This should be something for Georgians to celebrate, whether their favored presidential candidate won or lost. For those wondering, mine lost — my family voted for him, donated to him and are now being thrown under the bus by him,” he added.

Mr. Raffensperger, 65, has tried to maintain his political independence while preserving his bona fides with a pro-Trump party base. He resisted efforts by Mr. Trump and his allies to discredit Mr. Biden’s 12,000-vote win in Georgia, and hit back hard against the state’s two Republican senators, Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue, who called on him to step down.

But in his op-ed, Mr. Raffensperger also offered harsh, if indirect, criticism of Stacey Abrams, a Democrat who refused to immediately concede her 2018 loss in the governor’s race to Brian Kemp, after claiming that voter suppression targeting Black Georgians had swung the election.

Mr. Trump and his allies were following “a playbook written by a failed gubernatorial candidate two years before,” Mr. Raffensperger wrote.

The comparison, made by many Republicans in recent weeks, is misleading.

Ms. Abrams delayed her acceptance of the results, pending the review of irregularities, and made a point of saying she would never give a formal “concession” speech. But her actions stopped far short of Mr. Trump’s refusal to acknowledge defeat and his attempts to use the courts and pressure local officials in an attempt to overturn the results.

Ms. Abrams did eventually deliver a speech, two weeks after the election, declaring that Mr. Kemp “will be certified as the victor in the 2018 gubernatorial election.”

Mr. Trump has not come close to doing that. He has repeatedly accused state elections officials of allowing large-scale fraud, without providing evidence. In a prime-time speech two days after the election, Mr. Trump said that Georgia election officials improperly counted mail-in votes and caved to Democratic demands to loosen scrutiny of signatures on ballots.

But Mr. Raffensperger saved his sternest rebuke for one of Mr. Trump’s allies, Representative Doug Collins, a Georgia Republican who spearheaded the president’s thus-far unsuccessful recount effort in the state, slamming him as “a failed senate candidate with nothing to do who tried to undermine the integrity of Georgia’s elections.

If you lose all hope, you can always find it again -- Richard Ford in The Sportswriter
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#17099 User is offline   PassedOut 

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Posted 2020-November-25, 14:24

Michigan also had a very smooth and clean election, only to be attacked by politicians uninterested in preserving the US republic. A long article in Politico explains what happened: The Inside Story of Michigan’s Fake Voter Fraud Scandal

Quote

How a state that was never in doubt became a "national embarrassment" and a symbol of the Republican Party’s fealty to Donald Trump.

After five years spent bullying the Republican Party into submission, President Donald Trump finally met his match in Aaron Van Langevelde.

Who?

That’s right. In the end, it wasn’t a senator or a judge or a general who stood up to the leader of the free world. There was no dramatic, made-for-Hollywood collision of cosmic egos. Rather, the death knell of Trump’s presidency was sounded by a baby-faced lawyer, looking over his glasses on a grainy Zoom feed on a gloomy Monday afternoon, reading from a statement that reflected a courage and moral clarity that has gone AWOL from his party, pleading with the tens of thousands of people watching online to understand that some lines can never be uncrossed.

“We must not attempt to exercise power we simply don’t have,” declared Van Langevelde, a member of Michigan’s board of state canvassers, the ministerial body with sole authority to make official Joe Biden’s victory over Trump. “As John Adams once said, 'We are a government of laws, not men.' This board needs to adhere to that principle here today. This board must do its part to uphold the rule of law and comply with our legal duty to certify this election.”

Van Langevelde is a Republican. He works for Republicans in the Statehouse. He gives legal guidance to advance Republican causes and win Republican campaigns. As a Republican, his mandate for Monday’s hearing—handed down from the state party chair, the national party chair and the president himself—was straightforward. They wanted Michigan’s board of canvassers to delay certification of Biden’s victory. Never mind that Trump lost by more than 154,000 votes, or that results were already certified in all 83 counties. The plan was to drag things out, to further muddy the election waters and delegitimize the process, to force the courts to take unprecedented actions that would forever taint Michigan’s process of certifying elections. Not because it was going to help Trump win but because it was going to help Trump cope with a loss. The president was not accepting defeat. That meant no Republican with career ambitions could accept it, either.

Which made Van Langevelde’s vote for certification all the more remarkable. With the other Republican on the four-person board, Norman Shinkle, abstaining on the final vote—a cowardly abdication of duty—the 40-year-old Van Langevelde delivered the verdict on his own. At a low point in his party’s existence, with much of the GOP’s leadership class pre-writing their own political epitaphs by empowering Trump to lay waste to the country’s foundational democratic norms, an obscure lawyer from west Michigan stood on principle. It proved to be the nail in Trump’s coffin: Shortly after Michigan’s vote to certify, the General Services Administration finally commenced the official transition of power and Trump tweeted out a statement affirming the move “in the best interest of our Country.”

Van Langevelde's action does not surprise me because of my own experiences working elections in Michigan. The folks I've worked with, regardless of political affiliation or viewpoint, have worked hard to get and report an accurate count of all the votes. I never saw anyone even attempt to cheat. Michigan does use scannable stiff paper ballots, so those counts can always be verified manually, if necessary. And procedures are tight.

It sometimes happens that the vote count falls below the number of ballots issued. A voter can walk out with a ballot, for example. And people do make mistakes, so better training would be desirable.

But the real cheaters are those who tried to sabotage a fair election because they didn't like the result. From Trump on down, those cheaters know full well that Trump lost. The idea is clearly to fool gullible citizens into supposing otherwise.
The growth of wisdom may be gauged exactly by the diminution of ill temper. — Friedrich Nietzsche
The infliction of cruelty with a good conscience is a delight to moralists — that is why they invented hell. — Bertrand Russell
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#17100 User is offline   kenberg 

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Posted 2020-November-25, 15:06

View PostPassedOut, on 2020-November-25, 14:24, said:

Michigan also had a very smooth and clean election, only to be attacked by politicians uninterested in preserving the US republic. A long article in Politico explains what happened: The Inside Story of Michigan's Fake Voter Fraud Scandal


Van Langevelde's action does not surprise me because of my own experiences working elections in Michigan. The folks I've worked with, regardless of political affiliation or viewpoint, have worked hard to get and report an accurate count of the all votes. I never saw one even attempt to cheat. Michigan does use scannable stiff paper ballots, so those counts can always be verified manually, if necessary. And procedures are tight.

It sometimes happens that the vote count falls below the number of ballots issued. A voter can walk out with a ballot, for example. And people do make mistakes, so better training would be desirable.

But the real cheaters are those who tried to sabotage a fair election because they didn't like the result. From Trump on down, those cheaters know full well that Trump lost. The idea is clearly to fool gullible citizens into supposing otherwise.


Thank you for this link and for your comments to go with it. We look around for things to be thankful for, and Mr. Van Langevelde ranks high on the list. "We must not attempt to exercise power we simply don't have" Well said. Politics can get bloody, we all know that, but at some point some sort of respect for truth and law, and self-respect, has to come in. My deepest thanks to Mr. Van Langevelde.
Ken
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