Thursday, November 17, 2016

Did Russia Win The White House?

The American voters chose Hillary Clinton by more than a million and a half votes and the margin is growing as absentee votes are counted. The ongoing updated vote tally is shown here.

But Russia and the Russian spy agencies and the Russian dictator Vladimir Putin wanted Trump and it looks like they got what they wanted.

Esquire's very readable and credible political reporter Charlie Pierce reports on the Russian connection here, and here.

The Hill newspaper reports on it here.

Mother Jones reports on it here.

The Russian government wanted someone weak, inexperienced, irrational, incompetent and vacillating and Americans who voted for Trump helped them achieve that.

With perhaps some additional help from voter intimidation and voter suppression and election rigging.

David Pakman addresses vote anomalies in key swing states

Published on Nov 14, 2016
--According to exit polls conducted by Edison Research, Hillary Clinton won four key battleground states (NC, PA, WI and FL), but ultimately lost those states according to computerized vote counts

The data from TDMS Research

BBC journalist Greg Palast addresses these concerns more directly here

(This sounds like the kind of rhetoric Trump was shouting just before the election. But it isn’t rhetoric. It has to do not with predictive polling but with information collected as the vote was happening, which is less prone to deviations. The deviations are what alert the public to irregularities. That is what this information suggests may have happened.)

So there were a number of very disturbing forces pushing for a Trump victory.

Another mechanism that distorted this election was the way social media amplified and disseminated the lies being told. Because of the greater skepticism of progressive voters most of the fake stories that worked their way into this election were biased toward Trump.

The story from WIRED

Fake news sites sold more Americans on bogus negative stories about Hillary (I read one that reported that close associates said she emitted a sulphuric smell indicating she was in league with Satan. She does not, and she is not. People believe this crap because if it’s on the internets it must be true) and bogus positive stories about Trump (the one having the greatest effect may have been the one saying Pope Francis endorsed Trump, when in fact Pope Francis clearly and forcefully rebuked Trump and the hateful policies he calls for.)

Untrue stories and rumors are often in play during elections, but this year the untrue stories outplayed the true ones.

The story reported by Buzzfeed

(I realize Buzzfeed sounds a bit like a fake news source. This is actually a very well founded story.)

Trump benefited from the sad fact that many Americans base their most important decisions on feelings rather than facts. Which is ironic, because it wasn’t very long ago that Republicans were the party that prided itself on being rational and responsible. They derided liberals as being fact averse. That has flipped entirely.

Vox discusses the fact that conservatives believe the false stories far more than liberals do

One of the Big Lies cited in the Vox story was broadcast to the millions of gullible Trump supporters is now the top advisor in Trump’s White House, the notorious white supremacist Steve Bannon.

One of the fake news creators discussed his filthy profession with the Washington Post. He seems to be enjoying the damage as much as Putin is, while frantically denying any blame for the millions of people he lied into voting for Trump. He has a point: if you can persuade a stupid person to drink poison the joke is on them, right? Too late to apologize now.

The Oxford English Dictionary announces a Word of the Year each year. This year’s word is “post-truth”. We’ve reached a point when what is true doesn’t matter to millions of people. This should be troubling. This is one of the first corruptions that occurred during the Nazi era in Germany. Now I realize Donald Trump is not Hitler because Hitler was a vegetarian, but apart from his eating habits there are a disturbing number of close similarities, not just in what Trump promises to do but in the kinds of poisonous rhetoric he used to get people out to vote for him. The only real difference is that Trump shouted these things in English and not in German.

The true story about "post-truth" via the BBC

Nothing we can do, right? Too late now, right? Let’s all curl up in fetal positions underneath our beds, right? They won’t find us there...

Actually? Actually there is something that might prevent the inauguration of President Trump.

Something called the Electoral College. It’s the old device the slave states put in place to increase their influence in Congress by adding electoral power for people they owned as property.

But it was also put in place to keep power from being given to dangerous people who catered to the mob. Not the Mob, as in the Mafia. The mob as in the unwashed and volatile public. The ignorant folk who are easily fooled by fake stories about an honest candidate being dishonest and a dishonest candidate being truthful. The Electoral College was created to prevent people like Donald J. Trump (con man, fraudster, tax evader, sociopath, fascist, incompetent) from gaining power.

And to avoid that outcome we can still hope that enough of these carefully selected Electoral College Electors will refuse to ratify the presidency of Vladimir Putin’s favorite.

I am recommending that everyone who knows rational people in Pennsylvania, Ohio, North Carolina, Michigan, Wisconsin, Florida or any state that swung or squeaked by for Trump to phone them and ask them to write sincere and respectful personal letters to the Electors in their state. Other letters can be written to respected Republicans who might have some influence, who those Electors might respect.

One argument that might be persuasive is that Trump is erratic and irrational and likely to fail in a manner that will reflect very badly on the Republican Party. His errors and his poor judgment will be the party’s fault forever. The Republicans now own all three branches of government. They will own whatever unfolds whether they intended it or not.

Many conservatives have already disowned him. And are continuing to after the election.

The story from SLATE

Folks in the redder parts of the country tend to revere America’s military. You might inform these Republican in the Electoral College that our nation’s military rate climate change as one of the greatest security threats America faces today.

The story about the security threat from global warming via Scientific American

If Trump is inaugurated there are other things we’ll need to do. But let’s try to stop him before we get to that point.

Labels: , , , , , , , , , ,


Post a Comment

<< Home