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Member since: Wed Jul 24, 2013, 12:10 PM
Number of posts: 1,942

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how Republicans can re-gain my trust

I realize precisely none of what I suggest is actually going to happen in the very near future, but it has to be said.

The Republican Party can actually regain my trust. In spite of all the damage caused by runaway selection for nativism and nationalism, disproven trickle-down theories, and a desire to make the other side suffer rather than actually help people, I do want some balance in government, and a Republican Party operated by people who at least know how to read and write, and who realize we're as American as they are, can be a part of that.

But they have to earn it.

They have to acknowledge Trump’s loss, which we all hope will happen by a landslide next Tuesday.

They have to make sure their party is de-Trumpified. Trump’s main enablers in Congress should be stripped of all committee assignments. The RNC can back candidates in the next election who challenge the incumbents who promoted Trumpism. (That would be most of them.). It can make sure campaign dollars don’t go to anyone who parrots conspiracy snailshit. If McConnell is re-elected, Republicans can make sure he is never again given a leadership position.

They can get behind real reform – constitutional amendments to abolish gerrymandering, shitcan the Electoral College, and limit the president’s power to pardon people who committed crimes within his or her own administration; advance the ERA; allow expansion of the SCOTUS and federal courts to restore balance; and reverse efforts to ignore physical reality and marginalize scientific expertise from an advisory role in policymaking.

They can help bring real accountability to the Trump administration. I take great exception to those who say Gerald Ford “healed the nation” by pardoning Nixon. In fact, Ford enabled Iran-Contra, which I think was even worse than Watergate. (He didn’t stop payback for Watergate becoming a primary focus of Republican leadership, as shown by the insane amount of time spent investigating the Clintons.). I haven’t forgiven Obama for deciding to “look forward” and not bring accountability to those who started an unnecessary war on false pretenses and encouraged our troops to torture prisoners. I might never be able to.

The cycle has to end. We can’t just let the past four years of maggots crawling through our democracy to go unpunished, as though it can just be set aside as an aberration. It was the direct result of decades of runaway right-wing selection and tacit permission given by repeated failure to punish. Republicans must acknowledge this.

Republicans can disavow the practice of setting policy not to help people, but to punish the opposition. They must admit that their whole approach was polluted by the politics of personal destruction and the desire for power over an interest in governance. They can acknowledge that the US doesn’t live in a bubble and has to cooperate with the rest of the world.

Do these, and I’ll encourage bipartisanship on Capitol Hill.

The chances of any of this coming to pass are slim at best. We're going to see anger and rage before some of these people accept reality. I hope, though, that a couple of election cycles in the political wilderness will help bring those who want to govern rather than rule to the forefront.

I couldn't sleep last night. What if.....

I get bothered by bad political news all the time, but rarely does it actually keep me from sleeping.

It did last night.

Specifically, my concern that the Supreme Court might try some sort of shenanigans to give whatever hairy organism lives on Donald Trump's head a second term has gone way up. (And it was never minimal to begin with.)

Which led me to a what-if discussion in my own head -

My biggest fear is that the Supreme Court will rule that ballots not counted on or before Election Day should be tossed. Not just those delivered after that day - they've already said those don't count, which is outrageous and a good reason to impeach several of the justices - but any ballot that hadn't been added to the total by midnight on November 3.

Am I way off base here? (I very much could be.)

I'm still hopeful it'll be a blowout and that such antics won't come into play, but I'm really beginning to worry a lot more about it.

what I increasingly think is going to happen - serious sore loserism

It is entirely possible that the presidential election will be close, that we won't know for sure who won for several days, and that the result will be disputed. It's also very possible that if Trump is defeated, he'll pretend he won and pull all kinds of shit to stay in office. He'll claim the results were rigged, that a lot of mail-in ballots were fraudulent, that undocumented immigrants voted in large numbers, or whatever.

But although my optimism is best described as highly cautious, I'm really beginning to think that the result won't be all that close, and that a Biden victory will be clear by the morning after the election. He'll win enough electoral votes that no office-holding Republican other than Trump himself will be unable to spin some other result out of the numbers.

If that's the case, we're going to see Trump be the worst loser in human history.

He'll never concede the election to Biden. He'll never admit he lost, even if he only tangentially alludes to voter fraud and doesn't actually claim victory. He'll be the first president in the modern era, other than those who died in office, to not congratulate his successor.

He'll also be the first president in the modern era who won't attend his successor's inauguration. Other than VPs who replace a president who died (T. Roosevelt, Coolidge, Truman, LBJ) or resigned (Ford), the outgoing president has always attended the inauguration of the incoming president. This has been true when the outgoing and incoming presidents are of different parties (e.g. Truman and Eisenhower, Eisenhower and Kennedy, LBJ and Nixon, GW Bush and Obama), and it's even been true of presidents voted out after only one term - Hoover, Ford, Carter, and GHW Bush all attended the inaugurations of their successors.

Trump will be a no show. He lacks the grace and decency to be magnanimous. Indeed, he doesn't even have the self-control to act like such a person, even for a little while. He'll slink off somewhere and not be seen. Republicans won't want him campaigning on their behalf, news channels won't seek his thoughts or opinions on political issues, and he won't be able to go on the lecture circuit. He'll exist only as a cranky voice on Twitter.

His portrait should never be displayed in the White House or the National Portrait Gallery. It would besmirch these places.

I'm sure his handlers will make sure he feels important and relevant, but it'll be Sunset Avenue.

Again, there are a lot of what-ifs that have to happen for any of this to come to pass. But that's what I'm really beginning to think will happen.

My unrequested tuppence, anyway.
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