Except that I'm an embittered old American lefty, not a cute British novelty pop star. And if I had a hundred hands, I'd be shooting the bird with all of them and looking around to borrow more.
And there are plenty of fuck-yous to go around. My own allies in the radical and progressive movements would not escape the birdshot.
Before beginning the rant, allow me to link you to some other progressive analyses of the turd sandwich that was 8 November 2016: Brains and Eggs, Socratic Gadfly, and Thomas Frank's piece in Comment Is Free. There's also this surprisingly chill post from Caity Johnstone at Inquisitr, which makes me wonder what she smoked or drank to get in that frame of mind.
Democrats, Clintonites, and Berners who fell into line: Before you starting unfriending all those third-party voters with splinters in their eyes, you'd better see a doctor about that plank in your own.
It's late afternoon, and through the work day, I've managed to slough off some of the bitterness that I felt this morning. But still...two middle fingers way up. Mostly, I'm a tad bitter because I have so many friends who vote Blue, many of whom will continue to froth for years about how third parties fucked up this election just like in 2000.
You First, Progs
Let's begin with my progressive peeps. There's some good news/bad news in Texas: Green candidates for statewide offices set new records for vote total and percentage, but didn't get to the magical 5%.
Stein/Baraka ended up with 1.0% of the popular vote nationwide, 0.9% in Texas. The national tally of 1.2 million votes is a marked improvement over 469,000 in 2012. Thank those of you who defied the duopoly.
As a longtime Greenie, I know how support for third parties usually disappears, but come on! Last-minute polls were showing the Green ticket near 2%. In August and September, it was closer to 4%. Does that drop-off represent a few million of you who chickened out? Were poll respondents lying? Were the polls themselves bogus? Trump and Clinton voters came out of the woodwork? Maybe a combination of all that?
I can understand going voting-booth-chickenshit in a swing state. It looks like a fair number of voters in safe states like Texas (I got that one right: Texas ain't a-swingin'), there's no excuse.
...and the Flying Fickle Finger Goes to...
The 2016 Grand Prize for Advanced Electoral Fuckery
The Democratic Party wins this trophy in a landslide. No, #NotAllDemocrats, but the establishment, the machinery, the billionaires and the local Dem apparatchiks who greased the skids for Clinton.
PDiddie & Gadfly already said nearly everything I might say about the Democratic fumble—itself an echo of 2000—along with pull-quotes from Thomas Frank. But I can add this:
As I have stated emphatically and repeatedly, five million Americans who voted went Libertarian or Green did so for actual reasons, not just for hipster-cred. We are voting against the Evil Transnational Corporate Empire that keeps both major parties major and keeps the bombs falling on Pakistani weddings. When it's appropriate, or when avenues of civil protest are closed to us, we do more than vote: We take our politics to the street and throw ourselves on the gears of the machine. Apart from the 80 million registered voters who did not vote at all, we five million said "You don't own our vote" in a way that actually means something.
Nearly 66 million people voted for Barack Obama in 2012. Fewer than 60 million voted for Hillary Clinton yesterday. A portion of those 6 million missing votes went toward Gary Johnson and Jill Stein, but many more went to Donald Trump. (I'll link to the source when I can find it again.) If this election was a referendum on how well our Democratic president has guided the ship of state, fancy MSNBC graphs & statistics be damned, a lot of the white, working-class Democratic base just gave the Dems a big heave-ho. These people perceive, rightly or not, that the Democratic establishment has given up on them, so they have now given up on the Democratic Party. The only progressive alternative left for them was the Jewish doctor and the black philosopher running with the party that never wins.
Of course, the Democratic Party cannot just dump its billionaire benefactors, from whom it gets its life-blood campaign funding, right? Well, it could take a cue from Senator Bernard Sanders, start appealing to regular working stiffs, and become once again the Party of the People.
Now that the voting is over, Democrats, show me what democracy looks like. Organize like a motherfucker. Assuming some Republican Electors don't flip their votes between now and 19 December and change the outcome, the time to defeat Trump is not in 2020, and it's not just by voting. Do unto the Donald as the Republicans have done unto you, and start defeating him now.
Blogging Sporadically since 2014
Here you will find political campaign-related entries, as well as some about my literature, Houston underground arts, peace & justice, urban cycling, soccer, alt-religion, and other topics.