Monday’s Mtg: Who Is To Blame for Donald Trump?

My God.  It can happen here.  And now it has.  Why will be debated for decades. How did Donald Trump easily win the Republican Party nomination for president and garner enough of the popular vote (48%) in the right combination of states to pull off an Electoral College victory against Hillary Clinton?

We’d better come up with an answer fast, because already we are seeing the normalization of Trump by political and Media elites. In a way, what else can they do?  Trump is now the president-elect, chosen in a constitutionally-legitimate election. Yet, history will ask us how, in 2016, we elected the presidential candidate that ran on a platform of using governmental power to ethnically cleanse the country, jail his enemies, retaliate against the press, blackmail our allies, and literally wall us off from the rest of the world – and not the candidate that violated administrative procedures in her government email account.

Before it hardens into conventional wisdom that Donald Trump lies within the normal range of American political and Constitutional norms, I think we owe it to our children to ask who bears the most responsibility for all that is to come.  To me, the comforting answer – “a mere 4% of the voters [compared to Obama’s 2012 performance] plus the antique Electoral College” – is inadequate.

We also must avoid other easy answers.  In a razor close election, any single factor can be cited as being “the” reason for the outcome.  If only 5,000 people in Ohio had voted for Nixon instead of Kennedy, or 600 in Florida for Gore, etc.  I’m talking about something larger.  What made 50+ million Americans desparate enough to take such a gamble on Trump, and to ignore his obvious odious unfitness for office?  Below are some articles,  some pre-election, some post, that takes stabs at explaining it.

ALSO: I am not inclined to continue my participation in Civilized Conversation in the future. The very name is now a mockery of what our country is soon to become – and maybe what it has been all along. I don’t think I can bear having to prepare every week to review the latest developments in our self-destruction. Also, it’s been 10 years for me now, which is a long time to do what I do in this group 50 times per year.

I will open the meeting on Monday with a discussion of where, if anywhere, CivCon should go next.  Then, on to greater horrors.

SUGGESTED BACKGROUND READING –  

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7 responses

  1. Such words as “win” and “victory” in connection with Trump should be in quotes. In fact, Hillary’s plurality is expected to exceed 2 million votes when they are all counted, greater than many elected Presidents have had in the recent past. Not even a close election!
    I urge everyone to join the movement to petition the Electoral College. Yes, it’s a long shot but there may be a slim chance. Organize demonstrations in the Trump state capitols Dec. 19!
    And for the future, finally abolish the Electoral College.

  2. Sure, she won the popular vote and more Americans preferred her as president. Still, we all know there are 50 elections, not one. HRC’s campaign was supposed to be carefully calibrated to win the election actually had. I find arguments about her lack of likeability to be tedious. But, perhaps she belongs on the list of culprits for other reasons.

    I’m curious to know what other think, especially the strong Bernie Sanders supporters in the group.

    1. I think Bernie would have been a better candidate, and polls showed it, but that is a moot point now–we shall never know, nor will it help us at this point.
      I’m glad they’re demonstrating against Trump; I read about a million-woman March in Washington on inauguration day. But I worry that these may fritter away people’s energy in actions which are ineffective.
      The key now is to ORGANIZE. Oppose Trump in every way we can, which can have practical results!

  3. I hear you David. I’m weary too. But I’m actually more frightened. It’s why I can’t rest.

    See you tomorrow. Be prepared for trolls.

    1. Part of the answer is, low voter participation. Only 18% in primaries, 58% in general.
      Also, the gerrymandering is not just the Electoral College, the House and Senate are gerrymandered as well. Actually, Democrats received the majority of votes but Republicans are poised to take over. Is that democracy?
      Unfortunately, I have other commitments tomorrow.

  4. Here is a great – read it! – explanation of who is most to blame for Trump’s election. From an old acquaintance of mine: http://www.samefacts.com/2016/11/political-science/the-democrats-biggest-mistakes/

    1. Why 63 million people voted for him, is of course as important question; and those people are not going away. At the same time, it must not be forgotten that 72 million voted against him (65m for Hillary and 7m for others)

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