How the U.S. presidency was won (and why it won’t change anything much)

From Al Jazeera:


I appreciate their featuring of one of the “third-party” candidates, Jill Stein from the Green Party (from about the 20:16 mark).

Posts that relate to this, in one way or another:

‘A Period of Persistent Conflict’, or why the United States will bever have another peacetime president (Foreign Policy.com):

Since September 11, 2001, the president has been able to threaten or use military force to achieve a range of foreign policy objectives with few checks and balances or sustained media coverage — to an extent unprecedented in U.S. history. Anything short of deploying large numbers of U.S. ground troops is tolerated, and any executive branch justification for using lethal force is broadly accepted, including the notion that such military operations can continue in perpetuity.

Though both of the presidential candidates claim to want a peaceful world (Mitt Romney used some version of “peace” 12 times in the final presidential debate), it is unlikely that the United States will ever have a peacetime president again.

Myths, Leaders and Democracy (3 Quarks Daily):

Archetypes are universally recognized symbols or patterns of behavior that tend to recur in myths and stories across different cultures. The femme fatale, the hero, and the wise old man are common examples. The leader archetype is also popular. Like Moses or Ghandi, such figures tend to be wise and visionary and able to single-handedly inspire the masses to follow them toward some noble goal.

Once Again – Death of the Liberal Class (truthdig.com):

The ineffectiveness of the liberal class, as I saw in the former Yugoslavia and as was true in Weimar Germany, perpetuates a dangerous political paralysis. The longer the paralysis continues, the longer systems of power are unable to address the suffering and grievances of the masses, the more the formal mechanisms of power are reviled. The liberal establishment’s inability to defy corporate power, to stand up for its supposed liberal beliefs, means its inevitable disappearance, along with the disappearance of traditional liberal values. This, as history has amply pointed out, is the road to despotism. And we are further down that road than many care to admit. 

This one kind of cracked me up:

There is a growing and idiotic movement by people dissatisfied with American democracy in the form of President Obama’s re-election to secede from the union. I have a better idea: Just move.

And this one is rather different from the rest, but good in its own way: Letter to a future Republican strategist regarding white people

If I read the news correctly, I fit a profile that is of extreme importance to the GOP, as I embody the archetype that fits your narrative of Real Americans. Just how much should my profile interest you? Are you sitting down?

  • My family lineage goes back to the MAYFLOWER, BOAT ONE!!! (Garland family of New England-> John Adams -> Howard Alden -> Plymouth colony ->KINGS OF MUTHAF***IN’ ENGLAND)
  • I am a heterosexual, married to the super Caucasian mother of my two beautiful children who are, inexplicably, EVEN WHITER THAN I AM.
  • I am college educated (Master’s degree!) and affluent.
  • I am a job creator and small businessman.
  • We pay a lot of taxes! Every year!
  • I grew up in a rural area and despise laziness!
  • Having started my own business, I have complained at length about the insanity of federal, state and local bureaucracy – and its deleterious impact on the innovative small businessman.
  • I currently live in the suburbs in a historically Red state.

HOLY WHITE PEOPLE, BATMAN!!! Wow, you’re thinking – this is not some Mexirican in the Sun Belt we need to attract via harsh anti-Castro policies or appeals to “valores de familia” – this is the BREAD AND BUTTER OF THE GRAND OLD PARTY, a Mayflower-descended small business owner, burdened by taxation, looking out for his beautiful White family in the suburbs of a city (St Louis) surrounded by racial tension and urban blight!

How can I put this gently? My wife and I are not sensitive to your messaging, nor did we vote for the candidates you proposed for us this past Tuesday. 

*Spoiler* – He mentions the possibility of one-party rule near the end of his post. The US’ currently-ossified two-party system is hardly perfect, but single-party rule would be worse (no matter how one defines it), eventually.

Indeed, for single/one-party states, the good times for their citizens won’t last forever. Just look at Singapore.

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