The Road Ahead

First of all, we need to sit back, relax and think about what we have to do next. I’m smelling burnout in many circles, and it’s still two months and five days before Trump is even inaugurated. And make no mistake; he will be inaugurated. I understand why some people harbor fantasies in which something happens to prevent that from happening, but most of those fantasies are that for a reason. The only possible thing that could happen to change the outcome of the election would be a recount, and the possibility of even that working is rather slim. As for the other fantasies, well…

  • He’s not going to be impeached by a House being run by Paul Ryan and the GOP. Shit, people; they let him be nominated even though he’s a proven crook and very possibly a rapist and pedophile. Besides, given that Mike Pence is likely to be the de facto president, anyway, what would be the point?
  • You would need at least 20 electors to jump ship and vote Hillary. In the entire 230-year history of the electoral college, only 32 electors have ever NOT voted for the winner in their state. The last one was in 2000, when one elector from Washington, DC left her ballot blank in protest of DC’s taxation without representation status. She didn’t vote for Bush, she just didn’t vote for Gore, either. Given that electors are chosen by the respective parties and tend to be lifetime party faithful, expecting 20 to jump ship to the GOP’s most hated woman is a tad unrealistic. Impossible? No, but neither is expecting Sasquatch to run through the middle of Manhattan, either.
  • At this point, if you’re expecting one of the numerous trials he is facing to spell his doom, I might remind you that we have known some nasty shit about him for quite a long while and it didn’t stop him so far. Really; if you haven’t figured out that the Republican Party has no moral center and it has no standards by now, then I wonder why you think a deposition in a child rape trial or a demand that he compensate the people he screwed with Trump University would suddenly buy them a conscience. For chrissakes, people, a supposedly devout Mormon congressman from Utah even said his vote for Trump was not an endorsement. The GOP has no spine and no conscience.

Does that mean there is nothing we can do? Of course not. However, it does mean we have to work smarter than we have in the past.

We have to keep a few things in mind.

  • First off, it is very obvious that Donald Trump does not want to be president. He wanted to win because he puts great stock in winning, but since he won, every appearance has shown him to be scared to death. He is obviously in over his head, so we need to keep the pressure on. Trump cannot stand looking bad; look at how he reacts to even the most basic slights on Twitter. Anything negative and he immediately goes into defensive mode. We have to keep him on the defensive at all times. if you think about it, that strategy worked pretty well on Bush. Think about what happened when he was confronted by demands that he work with other Republicans to establish a Medicare drug benefit. Yes, they did it stupidly, but they did do it. And many of their fantasies never came true.
  • Donald Trump also thinks the president is basically the CEO of the country. We have to constantly remind him that HE works for US, not the other way around. He is not our boss and the president is the ultimate public servant. We can’t stop at preventing him from doing all the horrible shit he promised during the campaign. We have to also remind everyone that he is not an “outsider,” but a Republican, and everything he and the Republican Congress do should be seen as something the entire Republican Party is responsible for.
  • Democrats are not in charge of anything right now, so those “progressives” who try to claim that “both parties are the same” or other such nonsense need to shift their focus. For the next two years, everything is on the GOP. EVERYTHING. The economy will have problems. Job creation will not improve. The stock market will drop. The deficit will explode. And we have to spend all of our time go after the Republican Party for that. That means the entire party and their ideology. Especially the ideology.

In short, we have to make sure Democrats sweep everything in 2018 and beyond. it is our only chance to save this country. It’s time we stopped being against every goddamn thing and start championing something and someone. We’re liberals and progressives; we’re supposed to be the good guys. As good guys in white hats, one of our key duties is to defeat the bad guys in the black hats. And get rid of them for good. It’s the only way to save the town. This is a crucial time. In fact, 2016 was a crucial time, and we blew it. I can’t get a single so-called “progressive” to tell me what the hell was wrong with Hillary Clinton, at least not in rational terms. And we can’t afford to target Blue Dogs anymore, either. in 2018, we have to take back Congress by as wide a margin as possible and we have to start flipping state governments. By 2020, Democrats have to take the White House, keep Congress and take control of even more state governments; as many as possible. We also have to increase Democratic control in 2022, which is only six years away, because because 2021-2022 is when congressional district boundaries will be written. You don’t get to whine about “gerrymandering” fro a decade and then allow Republicans to control everything during that crucial time.

Besides, whining about “Blue Dogs” is stupid as shit when all of the Blue Dogs “purged” were replaced by teabaggers. Blue Dogs aren’t perfect, but they sure as shit vote with Democrats a lot more than teabaggers. In reality, when the Blue Dogs were in, virtually every House and Senate Committee was headed by a progressive Democrat. Now…

We have two years to champion the Democratic Party and make it impossible for the GOP to win. We have to go after Trump, not as “Trump,” but as a REPUBLICAN. It’s time to once again make the GOP poison to the electorate. And make no mistake, that task is not the responsibility of “the Democrats.” First of all, if you call yourself “progressive” and you are not working WITH the Democratic Party, you are a “PINO” (Progressive In Name Only). It is all of our responsibility to make sure Democrats get elected. No more will the professional left be able to call out “the Democrats” as a way to escape their own responsibility. No one who gives the GOP a pass and trashes Dems should be able to go unscathed any longer. It’s time to end the neocon era once and for all and that requires all liberals be on the same goddamn side. Most of us already are.


The Road Ahead — 7 Comments

  1. Thanks for this, Milt. I have to say that your posts have been a standout over this past election season, and they will be needed in the difficult months ahead.

  2. Did you see the article I posted earlier today? Democrats need to try harder to understand who the white working class voter is. For the most part, they are not racist and are not against wealthy people. They are middle class (or barely hanging on to middle class). They distrust highly educated people and don’t want to be told what to do or think. They don’t care about the minimum wage – they already make more than that – they just want better jobs. Even if we (or Trump) cannot solve their problems, we at least need to speak to them. Here’s the link: What So Many People Don’t Get About the U.S. Working Class

    • I like that. You’re preaching to the choir, in a way. This is one of the most obnoxious things about unicorn progressives. They believe themselves to be the saviors of the working class, while they also show little more than disdain for them. My father was a Steelworkers Union Democrat when I was growing up, but when he and my Mom moved to Arizona, he began working in a remote area, where the only thing he could listen to was Rush Limbaugh and like voices, and he kind of lost his way. However, it wasn’t because he was a horrible person, it was because he was no longer hearing reasonable voices.

      Unicorn progressives don’t just blow off the working class, though; they blow off People of Color, Hispanics and a whole lot of others. They tend to be really patronizing to everyone. It’s why I have always hated references to “Low Information Voters” and like-minded crap. These people are LIVING what progressives supposedly want to fix; how could they possibly be “low information”? What did those of us who went to college learn that they haven’t learned, besides theory?

      Good article and excellent points, for sure…

  3. Milt, also keep in mind the upcoming census in a few years. We have to definitely change these state governments that the repubs gerrymander the maps in their favor.

  4. One pitfall that is face is rooted in the chronic under performance of the economy, since the Great Recession got underway in 2007, and the obstruction – on political grounds – of every effort to undo the unit root problem and get the country moving again.

    In terms of economics, we have known all along what needs to be done. Now that the Republicans are totally in charge of the Federal, I suspect that they will drop their opposition to deficit spending like the shit sandwich we know it to be and will juice the economy until inflation is again the big problem. They have any number of tools by which they can accomplish this end, like Ronald Reagan and his seven trillion (adjusted 2016 CPI) dollar injection of liquidity to end the early 80’s Reagan Recession that we have found it convenient to forget.

    And, just like Reagan, trump will crow about the success of Republican Ideology and the chumps will eat it up like green jello. Looking too closely at the details or questioning the happy happy talk is not Joe Sixpack’s strong suit.

    So we always are wise to be careful, but in the coming deluge we need to be extra extra careful.

    • The GOP doesn’t have a problem with deficit spending, except in their rhetoric. Since 1980, the only presidents who have overseen a reduction in deficit spending have been Clinton and Obama, and none other than Dick Cheney is on record saying, “Deficits don’t matter.” At least 90% of the current level of debt can be lain at the feet of the GOP. In fact, if not for the interest we pay on the GOP portion of the debt, which is roughly $440 billion per year, we would be almost balanced now.