US politics has been the most entertaining yet depressing past time this year. Here are some thoughts.
It looks like Joe Biden is going to creep over the line by the tiniest of bee’s dicks. Trump will challenge the results in court and drag out his defeat because he’s a big orange sore loser, but there is no evidence to suggest that there was anything shady going on. Besides the usual American traditions of voter disenfranchisement, gerrymandering and voter intimidation from both sides but all these things that are completely legal and normal in the cursed hell country that is the United States of America.
Democrats fucked up about as badly as is possible to fuck things up – this election should have been an absolute home run. The reality show president has been a disaster by any objective measure. The US is in a worse place than it was before he was elected, which was true even prior to covid. After 230,000 covid deaths, it should never have been this close.
What does look likely, is that republicans will remain in control of the senate – which is very bad if you had any hope of a Biden administration achieving anything good for the planet over the next four years.
What did the democrats do wrong? What didn’t they do wrong?
They nominated a terrible candidate – the most corporatist, white haired, creepy old fuck they could find. A man who actually makes less sense speaking than Trump with way too many political skeletons in his closet. They assumed that a message of a ‘Return To Normalcy’ was enough to get rid of Trump so they propped up an empty suit candidate.
Joe Biden supported the 1994 crime bill that led to mass incarceration, he supported the Iraq war that led to well over 200,000 dead + the formation of ISIS, and he has serious question marks around based on past corruption and croneyism. To top it all off, because he said something stupid every time he opened his mouth, they kept him in a basement the entire campaign. While Trump was out holding rallies (incredibly irresponsible), the dems refused to even conduct door knocking campaigns (due to covid). They were slack because they assumed too much about the American voter. If you assume that people don’t like Trump because he’s a lying loudmouth, how do you expect those people to go and vote for the guy who called a whole generation on young black people ’Super Predators’. Biden was out there talking down to the Black Lives Matter movement – dismissing them as looters and rioters, playing in to rightwing talking points. The result – Trump won a larger share of the black vote in 2020 than 2016.
The dems entire election strategy was to try to appeal to moderate republicans who don’t like Trump’s personality. “Restore the soul of the nation” – what utter bullshit. They did not go out and say how they would make life better for the average working class American. They had little in the way of good policies and wasted 100’s of millions of dollars going after republicans in the suburbs, as if they would change sides. Well guess what – more republicans voted for Trump in 2020 than 2016. Trump won more of the young vote, more of the black vote and more of the latino vote in 2020 than in 2016 and you have to put it down to the democrats not presenting a policy vision that actually helped the people.
Biden ran on no strong policy platform – his strongest positions were anti-medicare for all (70% of Americans support), anti Green New Deal (majority of Americans in support) and a weak policy on fracking. By trying to appeal to the centre and the right, he gave way too much ground to Trump.
He actually said this
The liberal and centrist journalists and pollsters – all the people who predicted a massive win for Biden, that is to say the people who have no idea what life is like for normal Americans and who have now got it completely wrong two elections in a row are going to come out and say some dumb things now. They are going to blame the voters and call everyone who voted for Trump a racist, or somehow make it about Bernie Sanders and socialism. They are not going to do what they should have done after 2016 – stop and actually think about what makes reasonable people vote for a figure like Trump. Why even hardcore Christians put their strict morals aside to vote for the “grab em by the pussy” guy. Why in a country that is overwhelmingly for universal healthcare, that the so called “party of the people” has decided that they are fine with tens of millions of people not having any healthcare at all.
If Biden had run on Universal Healthcare – in this year of covid, he would have won the biggest election victory of all time. Every single developed nation on Earth has this but the healthcare industry and Big Pharma donates way too much money to the Democratic party for that to be a priority.
Drug deregulation had a massive win in the election. Arizona, New Jersey and South Dakota all voted to legalise recreational weed (hurry the fuck up Australia). Oregon has voted to decriminalised cocaine and heroin. Such progressive issues as drug reform are clearly popular – but Joe Biden was still out there calling weed a gateway drug like it’s the 90’s.
One last takeaway is that the reality is – the true power brokers in the US are happy with either Trump or Biden. The weapons manufacturers and military industrial complex get a president who loves to mess with other countries (lookout Iran and Venezuela ), and won’t tighten gun laws back home. The tech billionaires get a president who isn’t going to significantly challenge their power, privacy laws or bottom line. Wall street get to continue on their merry way to the next version of the GFC (and then get bailed out again).The fossil fuel executives get a president who is going to allow them to continue squeezing every last drop of juice out of this planet until it is economically unviable to do so.
This is the American political system, where everything is made up and the votes don’t matter.
- There’s every chance that Trump is going to continue to escalate the current situation and America implodes in the coming weeks. His tweeting is currently off the charts. He is emailing supporters telling them that the Dems have committed fraud. The USA has invaded countries for less election fuckery than what Trump is currently doing. There are videos of Republicans at polling stations chanting ’Stop The Votes’ – this is concerning. If Pennsylvania is close or Biden does not win by a clear margin this could go before a Supreme Court that leans conservative 6-3. There are 400 million guns in the USA, not including the military. It certainly looks like Trump will refuse to go quietly and he’s going to kick up an absolute storm. Civil war? That depends if the republicans have any back bone left to put a stop to it.
- Biden is currently ahead by 3.5 million votes but may still lose. The US electoral system is dumb.
- Does the US have a white nationalism problem? Yes. Does Australia? Big yep.
- Crazy conspiracy group QANON won a seat in congress – Marjorie Taylor Green, a gun loving, anti abortion, Q-supporting dinky di Georgian loving Republican is the first Q supporter to be elected to congress. This trend away from truth is going to continue and I wouldn’t be surprised to see an even more extreme version of Trump run in 2024.
- Wait for the democrats to start blaming Russia for this result. With zero evidence.
- This isn’t good for the world’s response to climate change. Removing a climate denier like Trump is a big positive – but Biden is a corporatist to his bones and will lack the political will to try to fight to push things through a republican controlled senate.
- Tensions with China will continue to rise no matter who is president. This will continue to put Australia in a tough position caught between our strongest ally and strongest trade partner.
- A Biden win puts a lot of pressure on the Australian government to get with the program on climate change policy. Even Boris Johnson is throwing shade at Scomo on our weakness as a country on this issue.
- Americans relate to Trump because they all inherently aspire to be like him. They want to be super wealthy. They want to be able to say and do whatever they want. Unchecked capitalism encourages people to think that obscene wealth is the end goal and the way you get there doesn’t matter.
- There are dozens of criminal investigations into Trump ranging from corruption to sexual assault to obstruction of justice to fraud, that have been on the back burner while he has a degree of immunity as president. Some of these will turn into criminal charges once he’s out of office. Expect him to self pardon himself before leaving office but this will not protect him from state charges. He might be in trouble depending on how badly prosecutors want to go after him (I would imagine it’s very bad).
- Bernie would’ve won. In 2016 and 2020.