“Oh God, oh God, we’re all going to die?” — Hoban ‘Wash’ Washburn
The results are in, and while I personally am disappointed, I am trying to take a pragmatic view of things.
“Let’s do the numbers” — Kai Ryssdal
I’m going to start here. Fact: America does not love Trump or his views. How do I know this? He got 1,215,065 fewer votes than Mitt Romney. If this country was massively and enthusiastically endorsing Trump you would expect to have seen him out perform Mitt. Instead even members of his own party weren’t buying what he was selling, just like his steaks.
After the loss in 2012 the Republican Party commissioned the autopsy report to try and figure out what went wrong. With their 2016 candidate receiving 1.2 million fewer votes than last time either the report was wrong, or they didn’t read it. My advice to the Democrats, write your own report and read it.
Here’s the next number: 5,853,014
This is the number of people who who voted for Barack Obama who did not vote for Hillary Clinton. This election was not an endorsement of Trump, but a repudiation of Hillary. She and her campaign were well aware of this lack of enthusiasm but guilty of taking 5.8 million voters for granted. There will be countless political science doctoral thesis written about this number for years to come.
But the long and short of it, people don’t like her. Whether it’s deserved or not I’m not going to speculate at this time. It just goes to show that she and the DNC are just as out of touch with this country as the RNC.
This brings me to the next number: 46%
This is the rough approximation of the population who chose to abstain from the choices they were given.
When given the choice between slaughtering a million puppies or drowning a million kittens, the abstainers are the ones in the back of the room saying “Why the fuck do we need to kill anything?”
So, why do I support a liberal progressive agenda and the downfall of society as we know it?
Because I firmly believe that this country is built on generations of shared sacrifice. The generations before us built great institutions and solved massive problems and it is our duty to maintain and preserve their work and continue to build new institutions and solve new problems.
Typhoid, cholera, dysentery are words that are absent from modern America because our great-grandparents generation decided that they were tired of seeing people die and built sewer systems and clean water projects. Flint Michigan is the prime example of what happens when we forget this sacrifice.
The United States by most measures has the largest and strongest economy on the planet. The reason is that our grandparents generation felt that it was important to build the largest damn interstate highway system ever to lower as many barriers to free commerce as possible. The potholes you avoid are the example of what happens when we forget this sacrifice.
It is our duty to maintain and enhance these institutions as they are gifts to us. We then have a responsibility to our children to pick a new problem to solve and give the solution to the next generation. To me universal health care is that cause to fight for. When people have access to health care they are more productive and by extension the economy improves and businesses prosper.
“…government of the people, by the people, for the people…” — Abraham Lincoln
There is a tendency to speak about “the government” as an abstraction, this nebulous boogieman in the background that is the root of all evil. I hate to disappoint you, but we are the government.
The government that sent men to the moon, defeated fascism, and eliminated smallpox.
We (the government) must be held accountable and laser focused on what our shared goals are. Focusing on issues such as whom we share a bed with are simply distractions that allow those in positions of power to ignore the shared goals and focus on their personal goals.
For those of you disappointed in the election remember this, in the last 24 years the platform and policies proposed by the conservatives have won the popular vote once. This means there are more of you who share an alternative view of where our shared priorities need to be.
For those of you excited about the election results, remember this, you now have all the marbles. You are being handed an unemployment rate below 5%, low inflation, rising wages, and (by some miracle) all three branches of government. Once the euphoria of the victory wears of, you have a job to do and for at least a little while, there is nobody else left to blame.