On third party voters

I fucking love my boyfriend, but I’m running out of arguments against his libertarianism. He is truly team Gary Johnson 2016. Help me find the right words to express why I think libertarianism is insidious and not the whole picture?

(To be fair, he always listens to what I have to say and we’ve come to the uneasy agreement that, while we hold most of the same beliefs, he simply has more faith in “individual choice” than I do.)


Libertarianism is for selfish children. Your boyfriend is a selfish child. Worse than that, he’s an self-aggrandizing sanctimonious asshole who’d rather use his vote to make an empty, ego-gratifying statement about “individual choice” instead of eagerly voting for Hillary Clinton in light of a grotesque clown like Donald Trump being the Republican Nominee.

I detest people who vote for third party presidential candidates. Some of you are probably too young to remember, but Ralph Nader’s Green Party candidacy cost Al Gore the 2000 election. Contemptible fuck-puppets like your boyfriend are the reason we got George W. Bush.

I will never forgive the Green Party for their role in the 2000 election, and if a Gary Johnson/Jill Stein circle jerk gets in the way of Hillary Clinton winning the presidency, I will hate the Libertarian and Green Parties even more than I already do now.

I know you want me to give you the magic words that will remove your boyfriend’s head from his ass, but there aren’t any. He’s gonna sit up there on his insipid pile of half-assed libertarian principles and pretend he’s on moral high-ground, and there’s not a god damn thing you can do to stop him.

He knows Gary Johnson will never be President, and he knows there’s a real risk of Donald Trump winning, but he doesn’t care. He’s such a selfish piece of shit that he would rather stroke his own smug-fuck male ego than do his civic duty to prevent a narcissistic garbage monster from having the nuclear launch codes.

Your boyfriend can go fuck himself, and you can tell him I said that.


270 thoughts on “On third party voters

  1. Anonymous Poster says:

    Can I assume you think the same way about people who refuse to vote for either candidate because they’re not “perfect” candidates? (Mostly people who refuse to vote because they don’t want to vote for Hillary, but still.)

    • #thirdpartycirclejerk says:

      Whether they’re throwing their tantrum vote away on a third party or having their tantrum and not voting at all, it makes little difference.

      Also, “Third Party Circle Jerk” is going to be the name of my Rush cover band.

  2. #feltthebern but voting for hillary says:

    Bookmarking to share liberally with the third party voting assholes in my facebook feed.

  3. Nihil says:

    Sent this in an ask, but realized it was better as a comment. What do you think of the suggestion to vote third-party in safe states and vote for Hillary in swing states? If my state is going blue anyway, why not give more attention and possible funding (in future elections) to a third-party?

    • pwinks says:

      Still dumb. The bigger the win for Hillary, the more that the noxious reasons that have led to the Trump ascendency get beaten down.

      If folks really want to make third parties happen, they gotta stop focusing on the presidency. Start local, particularly in larger cities (say, PDX and Houston and Orlando and Raleigh/Durham). Get your Green Party members onto county commissions, soil & water conservation boards, school boards, and the like. Galvanize the movement with a strong local base, and then start going for state rep and senator seats.

      • Kelly says:

        There’s never going to be third party in a winner-take-all electoral college system. The two national parties won’t always be the same two, of course, but the only stable state is to have two of them. You want more than two, you need a proportional system.

      • J Lynn says:

        Yes, yes, yes. If you can’t win a seat on a Parks Commission in a town or county, how in hell can you win a presidency?

        Also important to remember that in 2-party system, the parties aren’t intended to be ideologically pure. This is a common misunderstanding among newbs and third-party zealots. The two major parties are intended to be diverse coalitions, in which not everybody agrees, and there’s internal struggle and compromise to reach consensus. And, the party leaders are supposed to modify positions based on demands of internal factions, just Hillary has done, not be figures of a static ideology.

        Analog to American major political party is a “governing coalition” in a parliamentary system. Analog to small non-majority party in parliamentary system would be a faction, caucus, interest group or demograhic group in the American model (e.g., environmentalists, small business owners, young single women, etc.).

    • JC says:

      Nooooo. If Donald Trump is not totally and completely crushed, if Hillary barely squeaks it out, then the GOP will just put up a more palatable fascist next time. That one is the one who will win and fuck us all to Armageddon.

    • Ruban says:

      Dude, this is NOT the time to fuck around like this. This election is serious. Do not vote for anyone except Democrats in this election.

      I understand where you’re coming from, but it’s not worth the risk of doing this.

    • Bruce says:

      I agree. I live in a blood-red state where Hillary couldn’t win if she was air-dropping money (“Oh geez, it’s those new Harriet Tubman bills. Political correctness run amok!”). If I lived in a swing state I’d grit my teeth and scratch some lead next to her name, but I can no more give her my state than I can bring back Bernie Sanders’ chances.

      I’ll still be making my biennial church visit on election day and supporting my poor, wretched, penniless state Democrats, because at least I can support them on principle. But national-level Dems should be ashamed of their weak sauce game these last ten years, and blaming their own voters for being frustrated is some ass-backwards reasoning.

      • Suzie says:

        Bruce, please vote for Hillary. Based only on my blind optimism, I think it’s possible that 90% of the women, brown people, and those who got an education in your red state may secretly vote for Hillary. Obviously, this may not be the case, but on the off chance that it is, I’d hate for you to fuck it up. Thank you.

    • Jones() says:

      I would ask exactly which third party actually deserves more attention and funding. If, after looking closely at a party’s platform and candidate, you really think both align with your principles, then ordinarily I’d say to vote for them. But every two years I go through the list of third parties who work on a national scale in this country, and they inevitably are still just as crazy and incompetent as the last time I looked. The libertarians want to eliminate all corporate income tax? The Greens think they can cut the military by two thirds and NOT have a massive problem with 800,000 people (at least) suddenly in the unemployment line? Not to mention the number of civilian businesses that such a cut would harm? Gary Johnson calls himself a fiscal conservative but somehow managed to double spending in New Mexico while he was governor? Jill Stein doesn’t mind putting her MD in her back pocket and mumbling something incoherent when the anti-vaxxers start screeching?

      And I haven’t even mentioned the “Constitution Party” yet.

      We like to romanticize third parties a little because the two big tent parties are kind of boring, and they sometimes do seem eerily similar on certain issues. But like it or not, those parties have generally broad platforms with generally moderate ideas that are just going to hook in a lot of people. I’m a Democrat because I think there should be an economic safety net for everybody and they take racial injustice seriously. I also like the idea that when I look at a Democratic Party crowd, the faces I see are more diverse than the crowd for any other party. I sometimes wish the party was more radical, but although I might support (say) the Greens on some of their issues, they have unrealistic (sometimes bizarre) positions on other issues that I can’t say I support. And I can’t think of a single third party that I agree with more often than I do with the Democrats.

  4. Tommy says:

    Wow, for once I actually disagree with Coke. She seems to be operating under the incorrect assumption that all of Gary Johnson’s support is coming from Sanders supporters voting third party out of spite. In fact he’s pulling nearly equally from Democratic and Republican voters.

    I don’t think he’s ever going to win, but I strongly disagree with the “a vote for a third party is a vote for Trump” rhetoric. A lot of Republicans aren’t happy with Trump, moreso than the amount of Democrats who dislike Clinton. And I’m sure the same argument is being made in Republican circles that a third party vote is a vote for Clinton.

    • JC says:

      What is the difference? If you are not prepared to cast your vote against Trump, you are increasing the probability that he will win. It doesn’t matter what your political party is, unless you vote for a candidate who can beat Trump, you are effectively supporting Trump.

    • Chops says:

      I hate to be “not actually guy” but this is an important point that needs to be made.

      In national and swing state polls, when third party candidates are included, Clinton loses 3-5 percent and trump only loses 1-2 percent.

      Johnson is stealing WAY more from Clinton than trump and it’s 100 percent because of tantrum throwing Bernie or Bust types.

    • Nat says:

      I don’t know much about the US system, so I dunno if it’s the same, but in the UK, to be fair, there’s not so much to say in between. Third parties don’t get much opportunity to do anything except say they’d have done things differently – their supporters have no MPs in parliament to hold accountable.

      (I have always voted for one of the main two parties in general elections, but I occasionally vote for smaller parties in local elections – and I voted for proportional representation when we had a referendum on it).

  5. JC says:

    Coke’s response is perfect. I would only add that the ONLY people I see supporting third party candidates are people who have nothing to lose from a Trump presidency. The Johnson voters are just selfish twats. The Stein voters imagine they really care about the downtrodden and discriminated against, and then they don’t vote for the candidate supported by the people they claim to care about. Anyone know a single gay or black person voting for Stein? All I see is white male privilege waving around.

    • Kelly says:

      I would no more trust an anti-vaxxer/homeopath in the presidency than I would a creationist climate change denier. Different flavors, same anti-science.

      • JC says:

        Stein isn’t exactly an anti-vaxxer, but she panders to them for sure. Beyond that, do we want someone whose highest office was town council? I have more significant leadership experience than that, and of course my ideas are the best ones, so why not elect me? Oh right, I’m totally unqualified.

        • Bruce says:

          Exactly. It’s amazing someone who’s made a career out of losing elections is taken as seriously as she is.

    • Brandon says:

      There are a few gay men I’m aware of (speaking as a gay man) who are voting Trump – in fact, a friend linked me to some boring, beige narcissist who literally made “Twinks 4 Trump” a real and legitimate thing – but they are all privileged self-absorbed white twats who come from money, and will remain absolutely unaffected by a Trump presidency until the day he takes them to war.

    • Ashley says:

      gay female here, stein all the way. all the democrats have shown me is that they don’t give a FUCK about me or my vote. hillary is running out of hands to flip her middle fingers at bernie supporters.

      a trump presidency is the one this country deserves at this point.

  6. Brynn says:

    Care to comment on anarchistic principles of non-participation in the election process? They, unlike her boyfriend (I presume), are the ones on the front-line of every protest. And hey, #BLM seems to be leaning heavily towards anarchistic stances in regards to ending the police state. I could see an argument for them being misled (though anarchists are way too diverse a crowd to pin with any one argument), but I wouldn’t accept writing them off as narcissistic. Not with how actively they tend to participate, usually at risk to themselves.

      • Brynn says:

        Sorry for the lack of clarity, I wrote that hastily as I was stepping out the door. Wasn’t there some hullabaloo the other week over black lives matter protestors shouting some anarchist mantra? Or something about dismantling the institution because it was built on racism, and as such the racism will never really go away? I don’t remember, I’ve been working a few 80 hour weeks lately and my mind has been fried.

        As far as the misled comment goes, I was wondering if coke thought anarchists are misled on the idea of not voting.

        • JC says:

          So, if I yell “aliens are among us” at a BLM rally, does that mean that BLM is “leaning heavily” toward the viewpoint that creatures from outer space have infiltrated us?

          OK, but more seriously, go look up Campaign Zero. It doesn’t sound very anarchist to me. They are affiliates of BLM with specific policy proposals.

          • Brynn says:

            Fair enough, to anyone else who may comment, please ignore the blm part. I’ve been out of touch with my brain.

    • WhoAmI says:

      They’re narcissistic, of the kind that feed on drama, confrontation, and chaos. Pretty sociopathic too. It probably doesn’t help that many big thinkers of anarchism were such huge wackadoodles.

      • Brynn says:

        You and I are talking about two very different kinds of anarchists. Most anarchists recognize the futility of blowing up buildings, and don’t expect to see a world without government. They’re mostly concerned with undermining institutions in order to rid them of the nasty ideas they were built upon. And more than that, forming small communities that are self sufficient and look after each other.

        With this type of anarchy, the not voting thing is a way of saying fuck your government, it doesn’t represent us, it attempts to control us and exploit us. We refuse to be a part of it by being self sufficient in any way we can. We’re not going to vote until it’s in a town square, by a show of hands.

        • WhoAmI says:

          Ho no, I was verily talking about that kind of anarchism. The difference in scale (I also mean, in radicalisation) makes it look different, but when those principles are applied at a tiny bit bigger scale you get singularities like the Paris Commune that are only made metastable by the sheer strenght of rallying against a common and very real ennemy.
          The only anarchist system that can work is one made of some sort of Renaissance man, without peers. If your idea of anarchism is to just come and shake the government from time to time it’s not anarchism, it’s a Révolution. And that shit is not pretty.
          Really, I don’t know what is it the French have with anarchy, but it never helped them. Still doesn’t, given the ridiculously high abstention rates there the past decades.

          • Brynn says:

            Nope. They are anarchists. Their politics are different. Hippies are more about the utopian socialist world-nation idealism bred by their inclusivism, which anarchists generally criticize as the kind of wishful thinking that only ends up serving to preserve the system.

            Even if they do share some ideas, their interactions with the outside world are motivated by entirely different interpretations of it. Generally speaking, hippies are tempted to use the system to move people’s moral compasses, while anarchists are tempted to undermine the system so it stops fucking up people’s moral compasses. That’s an important difference.

          • WhoAmI says:

            idk, still sounds like hippies to me. Then again, in my mind hippies are absolutely not mandatorily vegan environmentalists (that would make them downright assholes dude, not cool). Maybe I’m thinking more about soixante-huitards than raw, pure american vegans ?

          • J Lynn says:

            I call that type “anarcho-vegans.” I’ve known and written about many as a news reporter. I don’t use the term in print — because not all are vegan obv, and it’s meant in a jokey affectionate way, not derogatorily. It’s just a handy shorthand for that particular blend of “Homage to Catalonia” politics plus hippyism.

            Nothing further to add at this time, just sharing my little portmanteau.

          • Rainbowpony says:

            I’m not exactly sure what you guys are talking about, but I thought I would chime in with the fact that occupy wall street was one of the largest anarchist efforts in recent history. David Graeber was an architect of occupy, and he is a committed and vocal anachist. He’s probably also the reason that occupy never developed plans to move it from a hippie protest to a useful political movement, because centralizstion and formalization of a platform was frowned upon. Yeah, anarchy sucks.

  7. Lily says:

    W was not a good president, but what’s naive about your view is that you think Gore would have been significantly better. Who’s in the White House doesn’t matter as much as the 24/7 reality TV show of an election cycle would like us to believe, and thinking that there’s any politician in our broken system who doesn’t totally blow is just immature.

    You can argue that the lesser of two evils is still less evil, and “throwing away” your vote on a third-party candidate means we’ll end up with the evil-er one. But that’s the logic that keeps our shitty two-party system afloat, allows billionaires to decide elections and forces public dialogue on nuanced issues to be black and white. I’m no fan of Johnson or Nader (both blow) but calling people idiots for voting for them just because they’re not chosen by the RNC or DNC is buying into the dumbed-down, red-or-blue narrative we’ve been fed for decades. You should be excited this girl’s dumb Ayn Rand-groupie boyfriend is casting a vote at all.

    A great babysitting tip when you want to get a kid to do something they don’t want to (eat dinner, get ready for bed, etc.) is to give them a choice. Rather than sit there an argue about whether it’s bedtime or not, just say “Do you want to wear the firetruck pajamas or the dog pajamas?” or “Would you like macaroni and cheese or a PB&J?” 9 times/10 they stop whining about the bigger issue and get distracted by making the choice — because it gives them back a feeling of power and control over the situation. Even though the choices are meaningless and they have no real power in reality. One way or another, they’re doing what you wanted them to do.

    That’s what elections are — they give 300m people the illusion of control over our government by offering a choice between one billionaire-selected candidate or another. The illusion is reinforced by an ongoing narrative about how important the choice is, and how different the candidates are, and it’s not just a right to vote, it’s also our patriotic duty and bla bla bla. But in the end, either way, the billionaire wins. It’s not a real choice, and we don’t have any real power.

    If people want to take time out of their Tuesday to vote, that’s fine. I don’t go around shitting on people who want to feel like they’re participating in democracy. But I’ll probably just get a pedicure or something.

      • Lily says:

        Congrats on the hundo. What does being white and privileged have to do with it (national elections being a theater of choice, not the pedicure)?

        • JC says:

          If you can afford to risk a Trump presidency, then you are almost surely white and privileged, not to mention straight and cisgendered. Nobody I know who is LGBTQ or POC is getting a pedicure on election day.

          • Lily says:

            And if you think a Trump presidency would be that different from a Hillary presidency, you missed my point.

          • JC says:

            I’ll get your point when you make a valid one.

            Take for example Coke’s RT on Twitter: @kristiwright A vote for Jill Stein is a vote for letting Trump choose Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s replacement, and that is *not* fucking okay.

            Coke pretty much just told you and everyone like you to go fuck off, so why don’t you go do that?

          • Rainbowpony says:

            Hell, you can be white, rich, educated, employed, able and cis gendered, and a trump presidency will still be disaster because you have a uterus, especially with that pence fuck nut around.

          • JC says:

            Abortion will always be available for women with money. It always has been. But yeah, I do agree with you. Any woman who doesn’t vote for Hillary is fucking over other women. Pence is scary.

          • Bry says:

            You idiots, it isn’t a popular vote! Drop the ego, your vote doesn’t matter if you’re not in a swing state! Jesus

          • JC says:

            Yes, it does matter how you vote in a blue state. If Hillary barely wins, the GOP will just put up a better fascist next time.

    • pwinks says:

      This is the childishness Coke chides in her post. Sure, things would be awesome if it weren’t just two candidates, but this is the reality we’re in, so we have to play the game as the rules are *right now.*

      Tut-tutting the belief that Gore would’ve been leagues better than W is risible. C’mon dude. It’s all counterfactual, sure, but Gore very may have well taken the threat of OBL way more seriously, rather than the flippant dismissal by Bush.

      • Lily says:

        Maybe Gore would have been way better than W. And maybe if a butterfly had flapped its wings a little harder 3000 years ago, we’d all have two noses right now. Who knows.

        My point was that even if there were more than two candidates, things still wouldn’t be “awesome” (maybe a little better than it is now, but it’s not like that’s not saying much). But the “rules” won’t change as long as people keep believing they have to follow those rules and buying into the false red-blue dichotomy. I’m no mathologist but I’m pretty sure if enough people voted for Gary Johnson, he’d win.

        • Anonymous Poster says:

          If you want to change the rules, by all means, lobby for a change in the rules. Just remember that the people in power—people like the leaders of the two major political factions within the United States—will do anything and everything to stop your efforts if you go right for the jugular from the start.

          As mentioned above, the real place to affect change—in numerous ways—is the “downticket”. You wanna get a viable third party going? Start local. Get people from a third party elected to offices within your city, county, or state. You won’t create a viable third party out of a single long-shot candidate who will only manage to convince less than 5% of the national electorate (if that) to vote for them in a POTUS election. You will create one by getting a bunch of people who represent that party into smaller offices first. Once you have a viable party made up of politicians who can prove (or have proven) their competence at governing, you can make an effort for getting a candidate from that party into the White House. Until then, you’re shit out of luck.

          We have to work with what is given to us until we can amass enough resources to create real change. A vote for any candidate besides Clinton or Trump in the national election does nothing for that candidate in a practical sense, and it doesn’t create a “political revolution”. A candidate outside of the two major parties has no chance of winning the election; if you plan to vote third-party, you may as well stay home and scratch your ass while watching COPS, for all your vote will accomplish.

    • VeryOff says:

      “what’s naive about your view is that you think Gore would have been significantly better. ”

      You have to be kidding me.
      You seriously think that the guy who tried to warn us about global warming and wanted us all to drive electric cars and use solar power is mehquivalent to Bush?!
      Save the planet vs. bomb and fuck the planet…”whatevs, same rich guy thing.”

      You are a special breed. I dub thee “Inactivist.”
      Used in a sentence, “Inactivists believe that dumpster fires fight themselves because you fight fire with fire…and ‘it’s just a dumpster.'”

    • alyssa says:

      Oh my god. Oh my god, Lily. Do you seriously not hear how condescending and privileged you are? “I don’t go around shitting on people who want to feel like they’re participating in democracy”. Like holy fuck, you just DID. IN THAT SENTENCE. Until you pull your head out of your ass and see some real shit in this world (wait, don’t tell me- I know you’re about to say you’ve had your fair share of “problems” and life has just been so hard to you too) I don’t think anyone’s comments are going to get through to you. Pretty hard to hear reason when your ears are full of shit.

      Oh, and by the way- I think you’d make a god-awful babysitter.

      • MK says:

        I can’t comment on American politics, I am not I citizen so I only follow your politics as far as I have to because your circus is headline news all over the globe.
        What I can comment on is the weird way “privilage (d)” has become a derogatory term. It is such a fashionable word right now, so I can’t put too harsh a judgement on people who use it to try to shame others. I can say “check yourself.”. Do you live in a western country? Ya? You’re privileged. Have you eaten today? Uh huh? You’re privileged. Are you living anywhere aside from in a box, on a street, under a bridge, in a doorway, or any other location which would qualify you as homeless? Ya? You are privileged. Do you have decent health? Yes? You’re fucking privileged. Was your neighbourhood bomed in the recent past? No? Guess what? You’re privileged.
        Until you know someone’s entire life’s story line, quit pretending you’re so much less privileged. People from all kinds of back grounds and experiences have different opinions. There is a good chance those opinions are going to differ from your own. You can even feel very strongly that they are wrong, they very well could be. But for the love of God, quit feeling like you are better than they are because you *feel* like they are more privileged than you are. And for the record; if you’re running around like life has shit on you worse than life has shit on a stranger you’re engaging on the Internet, you need to go volunteer at a homeless shelter and then go talk to your therapist.

          • WhoAmI says:

            If living in a “western” country was a privilege, it would mean that everybody living there would benefit from it from this fact alone. That automatically being located in those countries give you a better hand than being in another country. But to gain those (very real) privileges you actually have to attain a certain amount of status. Being a clandestine, being homeless, being extremly poor are all things that cut you out of these privileges. In some other countries you can actually make homelessness work. The richer the country the poorer its poors. Hell, even illiteracy can take half of those privileges from you. And I’m not even talking about being poor in a completely rural area.
            Living life as a “good citizen” in a western country makes you priviledged indeed, but there are conditions to meet that not everyone can.

          • MK says:

            Thank you, I was coming at this from an entirely different angle. A far simpler angle. I feel privileged to be alive. I am in no means a wealthy person (except in love…. Yadda yadda ya). I hardly notice at all if someone’s life appears to be more privileged than mine, I just do what I have to do to get by. I am fortunate to live far, far away from any big city; maybe that is why my view is so simple.

          • WhoAmI says:

            It’s just that “privilege” actually has a very precise definition, aside from that I totally get where you come from or what you meant with your list. 🙂

        • Strangely Rational says:

          Privilege is a comparative term which is only meaningful in context, and in the context of this particular conversation it means having political, financial, and/or social advantages compared to other people in the same society.

          In other words, we’re not talking about global privilege here. We’re talking about privilege in American society, and that translates to being as many as possible of the following: male, white, wealthy, educated, and Christian.

          Someone who meets all those criteria is going to have significantly more power than someone who meets none of them; in that context, that person is privileged. There are degrees of privilege as well, and all of those privileges are not equal to each other. They also vary depending on the situation you find yourself in.

          For example, I’m a poor, atheist, white woman with a college degree. Only two out of five, which isn’t too powerful. However, I’m white, and being white is a big fucking privilege here. In situations in which my poverty, education, and religious affiliation don’t show – like when I’m walking around in public – I have an advantage over people who aren’t white (especially in the very conservative geographical area I live in), even if they have all the other four.

          For the most part, it’s not being “privileged” that invites scorn. It’s unchecked privilege. If your privilege is pointed out to you and you argue that it doesn’t/shouldn’t matter or that you don’t have any, that’s the problem – not the fact that you’re privileged. There are privileged people who recognize it and humbly do their best to support equality by voting, volunteering, donating, etc. I doubt that too many people would have a problem with them unless they expect any attention or accolades for it (which they shouldn’t, as this should be basic for any member of society with the means).

          In this situation, privileged people who currently don’t have as much stake in the election and the resulting Supreme Court have the luxury of a protest vote. They’re shoving that privilege in the faces of those whose lives WILL be affected, some significantly so, even to the point of losing their lives. This is why they’re receiving well-deserved scorn. I’m willing to allow the young and naive (which we all are or have been) a chance to be educated, but if they refuse that education, they’re a fair target.

      • Kittyninja says:

        I knew I wasn’t the only one questioning her ability to engage with children. Like, what age group was she referencing much less why was she generalizing us as children. I mean, I get that’s why someone might think of people, but once again, their ignorance doesn’t make their privileged opinion true.

  8. The Coquette says:

    Fuck every last motherfucker in here who even HINTS that Hillary is the same as Trump. (I’m looking at you, Lily.) That is some willfully ignorant, apathetic nonsense.

    Fuck all your half-baked meta arguments about none of it mattering because the SYSTEM, man. Of course the system is rigged! Of course we live in a plutocracy! You haven’t stumbled onto any secret knowledge or moral high ground by complaining about billionaire backed candidates.

    This presidency MATTERS. Supreme Court nominees MATTER. Foreign and domestic policy agendas MATTER, so quit spewing lazy bullshit about it all being the same, because if you can’t recognize the obvious differences (and vast superiority) of a Clinton administration over a Trump administration, then you’re either not paying attention or you’re a fucking moron.

    • Bob Qwerty says:

      Hillary says, “I don’t understand the military and none of my key advisers do either. So, I’ll just give them whatever they want: bigger budgets, more mind-numbing mindbogglingly expensive toys, more real-estate and more foreign entanglements where we can explode bombs and implode cultures.” Meanwhile, Donald says, “”I don’t understand the military and none of my key advisers do either … nor do we understand any of our international treaties or support agreements or why we send foreign aid to 170 of the 193 UN countries.” So, yes, Virginia, there is a choice to be made. So make it and go to the polls on Nov. 8th.

    • Richard says:

      I’m going to save this comment and just endlessly spam it on facebook until the election. I have way way way too many friends who have tricked themselves into thinking they have very good reasons for not voting or for voting for a third party candidate. They’re so smug and pleased with their reasoning too (it has lots of big words in it). Even a cursory glance reveals the bullshit staining their words though. It’s maddening.

    • Lily says:

      It’s entirely possible that I’m a moron, and it’s entirely possible that the particular asshole shitting in the Oval Office toilet doesn’t all-caps MATTER in terms of outcomes as much as you think it does.

      I’ll leave the moral high ground to the sanctimonious Aaron Sorkin-character-wannabes who thinks anyone who doesn’t rock the vote (but for their chosen candidate because the other one is literal Hitler’s ghost, and definitely not a third party because lol come on kids, that would never happen) is a worthless dumdum who may as well go light a flag on fire and put it out with their face. I’ll be on the low road with cute toes.

      Am I apathetic and lazy? Probably, but I did once sign a petition to change the national anthem to R. Kelly’s Ignition (Remix).

      • JC says:

        You’re like a walking millenial stereotype, aren’t you? It’s nice that you took enough college classes to string all those ideas together, but that doesn’t keep you from being a dumdum. If you want to light a flag on fire and put it out with your face, I’ll give you back that hundo.

          • JC says:

            Not really. I didn’t say all millenials are as moronic as she is. I deal with a lot of millenials in my job — some of them are awesome, and some of them are completely insufferable. The ones who are like Lily can suck my ass.

          • JC says:

            I see, so whoami can make all kinds of generalizations about hippies, but I can’t point out that Lily embodies the stereotype of millenials. Check.

          • JC says:

            Yeah, I’m sure it probably sucks being a millenial who isn’t a total prat and has to deal with the Lilys of the world and all the scorn they bring onto your generation 😉

          • JC says:

            Whatever. Yeah, I’m super fun at parties. I’m the girl who will get everyone out on the dance floor. I don’t go to parties to talk about politics, though, and I’m dead fucking serious about this election. You should be, too.

          • WhoAmI says:

            …………………………….I am. As much as someone who doesn’t live in the country can be.

          • Strangely Rational says:

            I think the insufferable quality has less to do with any particular generation than it does with youth and the inexperience and idealism that usually come with it (and the more privileged the upbringing, the more this is true).

            I’m a GenXer, and I saw this same thing in my generation when we were at that age. My husband and I were both serious thinkers and more mature than most our age in a lot of ways, but we were not immune from the condition of being young and dumb. Not dumb as in unintelligent, but dumb as in just not understanding the way the world works outside of our theoretical, Liberal-Arts-college-educated worlds.

            I thought I was oh-so-enlightened back then, but looking back I see how much of a black and white thinker I still was and how many fucked up attitudes I had about people and life. I didn’t consider that the best plans in the world don’t amount to shit if something unexpected happens (and it will). Or that life wouldn’t always be the thing to change those plans but sometimes my own evolution as a human being.

            It’s not only a function of the young, because a lot of people don’t ever seem to grow out of that mentality. So I wouldn’t blame it on Millennials. There are GenXers and Boomers who still think that way, and we have a lot less excuse.

            If anything, I have a lot of hope for the Millennial generation, especially as they get older. They’re less religious, more liberal, and more comfortable with people’s differences, having grown up with more positive messages than we did as kids. I’m pretty so-so about my generation taking the reins from the Boomers, but theirs? I’m more optimistic about what that will mean by the time it’s their turn.

      • Anonymous Poster says:

        So you don’t care that you’re more likely to help Trump win than you are to help your chosen third-party candidate win more than two percent of the vote nationwide?

        And yes, who sits in the White House MATTERS. See, the person sitting in the White House has control of two very important things: the nominations for Supreme Court justices and the codes that can launch our arsenal of nuclear weapons. Given than your only realistic choices for POTUS this time around are Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, which one would you rather have in control of those two things? Because I’m pretty sure I want the one who won’t create a SCOTUS that will turn back six decades of social progress—and won’t drop a goddamn nuke at the slightest provocation—over the one who will.

        Seriously, think about what a conservative SCOTUS (which would happen under Trump) could do to this country. We’re talking further destruction of the Voting Rights Act, the possible revocation of legal same-sex marriage, further attacks on abortion rights, and God knows what other shit right-wingers want to do in an attempt to turn America into a 1950s wasteland for anyone that isn’t a straight white cisgender male. At least with Hillary, there’s the better possibility of a progressive-leaning SCOTUS, which wouldn’t do nearly the kind of catastrophic damage to civil rights and social progress.

        Your vote matters. These issues matter. You can be as insincere and apathetic as the millennial stereotype you so desperately want to fill, or you can start giving a shit. Then again, you’re probably the kind of asshole who thinks Trump winning would be a good thing because it’d tear the country apart and force it to “start over”. Your lack of fucks to give about this tell me that you’re the kind of voter Trump wants on his side.

        If he drops a nuke, will you give a shit, or will you go back to your Cheetohs and Netflix?

        • Benjamin Silverstein says:

          The “finger on the button” trope isn’t really a thing likely to happen. In reality there are too many other things beyond the President saying “Launch the nukes” that have to happen and too many people who’d have to go along with it before something as hugely momentous as dropping nukes could happen.

          • Anonymous Poster says:

            A nuke, maybe not, but I get the feeling he wouldn’t hesitate to unload our military might upon a country because its leader dared to insult Trump in even the slightest way.

          • VeryOff says:

            What everyone needs to realize is that we have NO FUCKING IDEA what he would do. If you don’t know the body of the 3000 lawsuits he’s been involved in, you have no idea what bullshit he might pull. Then put him in a position where he thinks he can do anything? We’re talking “bull in a china candy store” insanity.

          • Anonymous Poster says:

            And really, that’s the big problem with Trump. At least Hillary would be kinda predictable in what she’d do as POTUS.

          • BENJAMIN SILVERSTEIN says:

            We can get a sense of what he would do through some of the insane things he’s said about FP.

        • Lily says:

          If I still have access to Cheetos and Netflix in the middle of a nuclear apocalypse, that’s a pretty good sign.

      • Bruce says:

        You’re getting shit on pretty bad here, Lily, and it’s boring to join a chorus. But I want to say something straightforwardly to you that I don’t think anyone has said yet that I think you really need to hear.

        You’re a shallow thinker.

        You’ve rejected the popular cultural fairy tales and embraced some other, less popular ones, but they haven’t put you above the herd. You haven’t escaped Plato’s cave. You’re a black sheep but you’re still “sheeple.”

        Feel free to throw this back on me if you want. “What makes you so smart! What makes you so original!” (Notice they’re not questions) This is your defense mechanism, and it hurts you more than it hurts me. You don’t have to be smart, just smart-er, and once you’re satisfied you’re ahead of the pack you can be finished thinking.

        There’s hope for you though. You have some wit, you write with a voice. You just need to drop these tidy truisms that abdicate you from the responsibility of engaging with this subject. Like Let Ji in Twin Warriors, free yourself of your burden.

        When you realize that every comfortably simple, neatly rounded fortune cookie political meme passing itself off as “wisdom” has been so much sloganeering, and these are mercilessly complex subjects which none of us not studying them every day have any grasp of that we can be confident in, and worst of all you will probably live your whole life without a passing grade understanding of the processes controlling your life like some 18th century person who’s read a little about Benjamin Franklin and now they’re trying to figure out meteorology, then you’ll know you’re on the right path.

          • Rainbowpony says:

            Ha! I don’t agree with you lily, but I’m not going to use your comments as a platform for my opinion or to release anger about American voting habits.
            Cokes bitch slap was enough.

            I don’t like groups of people that pile on to enforce common thinking among all its members. I leave that to vegans and their ilk.

            Honestly, I wouldnt respect someone if they changed their mind on a dime anyway. Keep reading, keep thinking, keep an open mind.

    • Unapologetic says:

      Still not with her. Still not convinced that Hillary would be better than Drumpf. To all of you who are commenting that the only people who will cast protest votes are white, are any of y’all POC? I highly doubt it.
      I won’t vote. I don’t live in a swing state, so it doesn’t matter anyway.
      I can’t support someone who has destroyed countless Haitian lives, who is responsible for the murder of Indigenous, Environmental, Afro-Latinx, Afro-Indigenous, etc activists throughout South America and killed countless Middle Eastern children through drone strikes. I can’t support someone who doesn’t want Palestine to be free.
      Hillary is trash.

  9. nwnk says:

    Let’s take as a given that the two-candidate system is not ideal, but that it is the reality. In this situation, a protest vote is taking support away from the viable candidate you prefer, and ceding a higher percentage of the votes for viable candidates to the one you dislike.

    A protest vote is a vote against your own self-interest.

    The same is true of abstention. If you have any preference among the viable options, refusing to vote is refusing to endorse your preference, and giving more weight to the option you would reject.

    An abstention is a vote against your own self-interest.

  10. abab says:

    I just can’t wrap my head around how some people think in such black and white terms. EVERYTHING is nuanced. EVERYTHING is a shade of gray. We can’t just push some magical reset button and rebuild ‘the system’ from the ground up…unless some weird apocalyptic shit went down, that is…

    The truth is, progress is SLOW. AS. FUCK. People dedicate their entire LIVES to small steps in the right direction, and some die before they even see the results of their life’s work. And even when they win and progress is made, the generations that follow have to MAINTAIN it. Look at women’s reproductive rights! If you get lazy, shit gets pushed back to the dark ages! It takes a collective effort and lots of patience, carefully considered strategy, and collaborative organization.

    That’s what makes me worry about my generation… we’re so used to snapping our fingers and getting what we want that our perception of reality is warped as fuck. We outnumber the generations that precede us by a long shot, yet we can’t pay attention to a problem long enough to fart out a realistic plan to resolve it. Sigh…

  11. WhoAmI says:

    “Hillary and Trump are basically just the same !!” tell that to the other countries who will have to live in a world where all the major empires are led by overtly facist leaders if Trump is elected.

  12. definitely not batman says:


    I have a Kool-Aid drinking Randian fuckwit in my vicinity and it’s infuriating how dumb they are and yet how convinced of their superiority. Truly gross. Good thing we’re not American or else I would probably have to lock them in a basement on Election Day.

    • abab says:

      It hurts my head when I meet people my age that quote Rand or parrot any libertarian bullshit on my feed or in my face. A handful of them are people I actually really like, but I can’t help but lose a ton of respect for them when they expose their Ayn-us.

  13. Lin says:

    I’m not an American, and I don’t have he best grasp on y’alls party system or election procedure but from where I stand there is no justication or rationale for voting third party this election.

    Also, the fact that folks are seriously comparing Clinton to Trump is very telling.

    • Anonymous Poster says:

      There is generally no rationale for voting third party in any national election. Most third parties in this country—or the parties vying to be the “third party”, anyway—are insignificant blips outside of their local seats of power. They have neither the resources nor the recognition to grab more than a proportional handful of votes in any national election. (Our weird electoral college system and the resources behind the two major parties don’t help.)

      Lasting change takes time, and the only real change comes from the bottom up. Creating a viable third party means gathering resources, building a comprehensive platform, and getting enough people into enough “downticket” (i.e. local, county, and state) offices to make the party viable. Only then could it withstand the storm of a national election and the other two parties trying to drown the third one out.

      When that happens, we can talk about changing the system. But until it does, we gotta work with what we got. Pragmatism beats idealism any day of the week—because pragmatism gets results.

      • J Lynn says:

        Yes, and in most cases they don’t EVEN have a “local seat of power.” They haven’t even managed to elect someone to the Summer Fun Days committee of their town, or equivalent.

        I’ve known a very few local government officials to describe themselves as “socialist” but they either campaigned for Dems at the national level, or at least didn’t oppose them.

        • JC says:

          But Jill Stein was on the town council. It’s the stepping stone that allows you to jump up to leader of the free world !! You can skip Congress, Senate, Cabinet positions, you just gotta be a pasty white lady with town council experience.

          I am beginning to think they don’t call it the Green Party for the environment. Whatever they are smoking, they need to cut back.

  14. Kelly says:

    Libertarians are like house cats. Totally convinced that they are absolutely independent, but in reality completely reliant on others for survival.

  15. Nat says:

    Really disappointed that you don’t live in the UK. It means I’ve missed out on all the great shit you’d have said about our recent politics if you did.

  16. Bry says:

    Sheesh, that was a bit extreme. I’m no libertarian but I do think we need more options. Frankly, your vote doesn’t matter anyways unless you live in a swing state. Until I live in a swing state or our system turns into one where the electoral college is abolished and popular vote wins, I’ll always vote third party. Not of of any male ego bullshit but because the red vs blue paradigm is half the reason people are so entrenched that they would consider a stooge like Trump anyway. Be that as it may, please vote for Hillary if you live in a swing state. Cokes unfortunate diatribe projected at this poor guy is a bit laughable and all of you kiss ass goons on here without an original thought in your head are sad. Ego is thinking your vote matters in this shitty system unless you live in Virginia, Pennsylvania, Ohio, or Florida.

    • Anonymous Poster says:

      Do we need more options? Probably.

      Do we have more options besides Clinton and Trump? Sure.

      Do we have options that have as much of a chance at winning the election as Clinton or Trump? FUCK NO.

      Pragmatism is the order of the day here, my friend. We do the best we can with what we have so that we can one day create a situation where what we have is better than what we used to have. For now, that means not giving Donald Trump a greater chance of winning the presidency and thereby helping Congress and a conservative SCOTUS turn the clock back on decades of social progress. Hillary isn’t a perfect candidate, but perfect is the enemy of good, anyway.

      • Bry says:

        Way to ignore the point about the ego of thinking your vote matters if you don’t live in a swing state. Donald Trump has no more chance of losing Alabama than he does of winning California. Same story in the other 95% of the country. I clearly stated everyone in a contested state should vote Hillary. Unfortunately, that’s not most states and the entrenched mindset that coke and these mindless drones promote is a big part of why that’s the case. It takes a special moron to think their vote matters in an election that isn’t popular vote. Thus negating the pragmatism argument. Everyone here not in Florida or the rust belt could vote fucking Eric Cartman and it wouldn’t matter. One person one vote is a fucking facade in this system and anyone who doesn’t see that is a class A egomaniac.

        • Anonymous Poster says:

          Hey, so, you know who else filed a “protest vote” recently? The pro-Brexit people. How’d that work out for them?

          • Bry says:

            And still a substance free straw man argument. Vote for whomever you want, sir or madam. However, if you are going to reply to me it would be nice if you made an attempt at a discourse based on the merit of one anothers points. For example, I acknowledge your point that the third party won’t win this year. Please also acknowledge that your vote doesn’t matter if you don’t live in a swing state. We can then move forward in a factually accurate manner and maybe even have a productive discourse like everyone in this editorial news informed country needs to do. Your vote is yours and I applaud you in casting it in any manner that allows you to meet the sandman with a clean conscience.

          • Radio says:

            Except for cultural legitimacy. The more popular votes for Clinton, the more legitimate her presidency will appear, the less fodder for Republicans.

          • Bry says:

            Oh, give me a fucking break. How big did Obama win both times (thankfully?) Corporate backed two party politics don’t care about margin of error, much less the margin of victory. Grow up.

          • Anonymous Poster says:

            “your vote doesn’t matter if you don’t live in a swing state”

            I don’t believe that for a minute.

            Here’s what people mean when they talk about margins of victory: If the loser is as close to the finish line as the winner when the winner crosses the line, the loser’s approach to “the race” gains legitimacy. In this case, if Trump loses but is not wholly decimated in the national election—if he manages to actually make it a close race all the way to the end—everything he’s done in his campaign up to now and everything he’ll do until Election Day will be legitimized as an approach that could win the 2020 election. Blatant racism, blatant homophobia, grade-school-level insults flung at political opponents both inside and outside the party…all of that comes into play again for the next national election. Or even the “downticket” elections between 2017 and 2020. A Trump loss that isn’t a smackdown of epic proportions (or a Trump victory) will normalize all the shit he’s said and done during this campaign—and that is a thought so terrifying that I cannot fathom its true horrors.

            As for the whole “not a swing state” thing: The same principle applies here, too. Let’s say you live in a red state; I’m talking GOP-controlled for years. Now, if you see Trump win that state by a landslide, it only deepens the control. But if Clinton makes it a close race and gets within actual “she could’ve won with just a proportional handful of more votes” range, it sends a message to the GOP: “Your approach nearly cost you a state you’ve controlled for years, and it might work next time.”

            (The inverse holds true for blue states, too.)

            Tossing your vote to a third party increases the gap between the state’s “preferred” candidate and their major-party opponent. If you live in a red state and you vote third party, you would help Trump increase his lead over Clinton and further normalize his bullshit within our political system. Your “protest vote” would amount to nothing but a bigger win for Trump and sending the implicit message of “Trump’s approach works” that such a win would carry. I can’t stop you from sending that message with your vote. But I can at least ask you if that’s the message you want to send with it.

          • Ruban says:

            I see you forgot to drop the mic, so I just did that for you.

            Thank you for your sound reason and logic here.

          • Bry says:

            So, you think Obama’s massive victory normalized his positive campaign messages and forced to opposition to meet him in the middle? No, it didn’t. Your logic is reasonable and I wish it carried over to the real world but it simply doesn’t. As far as my vote sending a message, it doesn’t and I am not delusional to think that it does. I would encourage you to also consider this reality. I am simply voting in a way that allows me to cope with the shitty hell scape of a political climate that we live in. As far as Trump losing in a landslide goes, he won’t. Either candidate has 40% of the vote going into it because idiotic people push the button for red or blue based on what fucking channel they watch. You can’t actually be disputing this, can you?

        • Strangely Rational says:

          I live in Indiana, which is firmly red. Not a swing state by anyone’s definition. It’s been red since 1964.

          But oh wait, there’s one exception. In 2008, we voted for Obama.

          Until then, I’d been cozy in my beliefs that it was pointless to vote for a Democrat here, and then all of a sudden it wasn’t. (I did vote for Obama in that election, FTR.)

          That vote actually mattered. An independent* voter’s vote in a red state helped a Democrat win the White House.

          Will it happen again? At some point, yes. Maybe even this election, despite Trump’s current lead here. I don’t know when my vote will be dearly needed. Which means that I’m going to keep doing it in case it is.

          *Back then. Democrat now.

      • Betsy says:

        Also, people need to mobilise and campaign for their beliefs. You can’t just expect the president, as if by magic, to solve everything. There’s so much great stuff happening at the local and grassroots level – and there’s a much better chance of continued success there if Clinton is the president.

        Meanwhile, I’m pretty sure a Trump presidency would lead to civil war. Oh and the destruction of the planet, either with nukes or climate change.

        I just wish someone would tell Clinton to stop bringing up her husband. It won’t work for anybody who’s not already on board with her.

    • definitely not batman says:

      Ew. Every word you wrote is dripping with arrogance and you lecture others about ego. Sounds like a Randian to me.

    • G says:

      Wiki Duverger’s Law. Our current system makes it basically impossible for a third party to remain viable /stably third – either it will supersede one of the two or fall off.

  17. Nerdlinger says:

    All those domestic affairs don’t weigh up against the price in lives of military adventurism. That said, anyone banking on Trump actually going through with isolationism instead of floundering on with the half-baked current foreign policy is delusional. If only you folks had a parliamentary system. Sure, it gives the Fash Pagan Party some seats, but it also means the Vegan Animal Rights Coalition actually gets more.

  18. Radio says:

    Ok. No one else has mentioned this, but we’re not just talking about Trump getting the presidency. We’re also talking about MIKE PENCE. Jesus fucking christ. I can *sort of* (but not really) understand people who are like “oh donald trump is just a joke lalala america deserves this who cares we don’t really know his real policies so like whatever,” but like don’t fucking fuck with your vote when Mike Pence is also on the ticket. Especially when there are reports that Trump plans on outsourcing presidential duties to his VP. Trump isn’t just a wild card anymore. He’s not just a racist, ignorant, narcissistic mad man, as if that weren’t enough. He’s now connected at the hip to a piece of shit evangelical cultural crusader against women, poor people, science, lgbt rights, public education, Planned Parenthood, etc etc etc etc. Remember that HIV outbreak in Indiana? Yeah, Mike Pence.

    • Strangely Rational says:

      As an Indiana native, I have to say that my first reaction to Trump’s pick was to cheer that we’re rid of Pence.

      But then I considered the national impact. Crap. Yeah, you guys don’t want Pence in there. You really, really, really do not want Pence. And given the real possibility that Trump will commit an impeachable offense, we could very well end up with fucking President Pence. And I’ve just ensured that I will be having nightmares tonight . . .

      • VeryOff says:

        I’m curled up in a ball on the floor in my closet while browsing the stats at, crying and praying for a meteor.

  19. Gaybeard says:

    I get why Coke is so adamant about rejecting Trump and her argument makes total sense.

    On the other hand, I think people who are characterizing Trump coming to power as the end times or a “right wing dystopia” are exaggerating. First, we already live in a dystopia, the question is just whether we’re going to drift into a neo-fascist version of it. Second, while a Trump presidency might weaken the US for 4-8 years and have a significant negative impact on the lives of Americans, I don’t think that his ascendency would make much of a dent (one way or the other) in the macro level polarization of American society. No President is ever going to drain that swamp without a mass movement of people dedicated to changing the political consciousness of the nation.

    Potential silver lining of a Trump Presidency: galvanizing opposition and significantly disrupting the Republican party, creating the possibility for a huge shift in 4-8 years.

    I mean, look what happened after 8 years of Bush, you guys got Barack. Do you think that would have happened if people weren’t so fed up with the Republicans in 2008?

    Anyways, all this to say that I still think Coke is right and that people shouldn’t fuck around with their vote this election cycle, but that you shouldn’t act like Trump coming to power is going to be the end of the world. He’s not actually Hitler. He’s a populist demagogue, and he would be terrible for the US, but he is not Hitler.

    • Betsy says:

      Again, considering his climate policies – and the US is the second largest GHG emitter in the world, as well as the home state of Chevron and Exxon – he could very well be the end of the world.

      I’m so excited about the investigations against Exxon in CA, NY and MA, btw.

      • Gaybeard says:

        Even Obama’s environmental policy is only an incremental step in the right direction. We would have to stop pulling oil out of the ground TODAY for any kind of significant reversal in current trends. Also, with China and India on the rise, the number of automobiles is skyrocketing and increasing global emissions at a tremendous rate. Again, Trump would be worse in the sense that he would speed up the pace of environmental destruction but no candidate is seriously considering an action plan that would actually have a significant impact on global warming.

        • Benjamin Silverstein says:

          I can’t imagine a world where humans care more for the environment, than we do for our own comforts.

          • Benjamin Silverstein says:

            And? Humans obviously don’t give a shit. If they did humans would generally understand and take seriously the probable longer term consequences of their actions. Instead we pollute the oceans, we cut down all the trees and are turning the planet into a desert, depleting our life support systems. All the while insisting at the top of our lungs, that we are doing nothing of the sort.

            Yeah, okay some world leaders, or their representatives, and climate scientists from time to time convene to discuss and “respond” to the evidence that human activity is altering the environment/climate system in a way which is detrimental to and probably disastrous for all life on Earth, including human life. Big fucking woop! Nothing binding or substantive comes from it because most of the people they represent can not be inconvenienced to do anything about it.

          • wrkrb says:

            Your points trouble me every day. I will vote Hillary if Trump doesn’t die of a heart attack but I don’t expect her candidacy to benefit the planet much. My conscience is with Jill Stein. Coquette’s bash on third parties is really depressing and I respect her less for throwing her weight behind incremental corporate sponsored politics.

        • Betsy says:

          Have you actually looked at the democratic platform and Hillary’s own campaign? Or is this some sort of pre-formed opinion to justify your own apathy?

          Btw, India is actively investing in renewables (it just called on its fossil fuel companies today to do so), and so is China. And while China may have more emissions than you, their rate per capita is drastically lower.

          I am so grateful, by the way, that the US have such an incredible community of activists working towards reversing this trend. Your skepticism isn’t based on reality, it’s just self-justifying indifference.

          • Gaybeard says:

            Where do you see apathy? Am I advocating for Trump? No. Am I saying don’t vote? No. Am I saying that you shouldn’t care about the environment because permanent and serious climate change is almost guaranteed? No.

            So, where the fuck do you get off calling me indifferent? Have you actually read what I said or is this just some pre-formed opinion to justify your stupid self-righteous bullshit?

            I’m also not from the US, fyi.

          • Betsy says:

            Considering you stated several platitudes that are misleading, I’m not sure I’m the one with the “stupid”, preformed opinion here. Trump wants to drop out of COP21, he’s considering a fracking mogul as a secretary, while Hillary wants to directly fund renewables and end fossil fuel subsidies, and the DNC wants a “Green New Deal.” Granted, those things will need active pressure to actually happen. But Clinton needs to be in the White House for there to be a fighting chance. Yes, even if she did promote fracking in the past.

            So yes there is an enormous difference between a tepidly good and a terrible thing, one that you are understating. No point in arguing whether a dude is Hitler or not. That’s why people are mad at you.

          • Gaybeard says:

            I’m not disputing that there’s a difference between a tepidly good or a terrible thing. The crux of my point is that the Presidency, while important, is not as important as the sum total of movement in the US in any global-level issue, especially since the period is limited to a maximum of 8 years.

        • VeryOff says:

          Actually we would have to stop fracking, plug up the holes, and stop deforestation while initiating ocean rehabilitation. The oil isn’t as bad an issue as the forests.

          I don’t think you fully grasp how Trump/Pence could throw the Supreme Court into overdrive reverse gear warp 12. Here’s a nightmare scenario. Trump starts taking bids from businesses on what to do. I.e. Give more power to the states. Or fuck the EPA. Seriously, kicking the last leg out from under the toothless EPA is exactly the shit that would make him smile. Congress backs the shit out of it. The businesses aren’t stupid so they coax him into shenanigans that slowly get crazier. But they get frustrated because he doesn’t have the attention span to pull off long term plans. Democrats are fighting a losing battle on the shit coming out of that office. But hey, states landed drilling and fracking rights so they can excercise that shit in national forests when it’s cost efficient. At some point they get him to massively overreach. He takes bids on who should be Supreme Court…congress backs the shit out of it. But what about them getting reelected as motivation? They don’t care, they’re cashing out or winning big campaign funds because guess what…zero campaign funding reform. Trump overreaches with foreign policy and tries to Nixon our debt or use his standard tactic of pressuring to pay less back on the dollar. China calls our bluff. The economy is in chaos. Trump does something stupid and gets caught enough that shit goes to impeachment. Could the first try fail because congress is still riding the gravy train? Pence promises to pardon him. Now pence gets the next one or TWO justices and starts signing banana executive orders. Meanwhile Russia starts pulling shit. The Mideast goes up in flames. Korea feels left out and starts testing more missiles and shouting demands. The U.K. Can’t get their shit together because the negotiations are taking too long and they can’t even afford the manpower and don’t have enough brains to go around. …

          I’m just getting started, I haven’t really thought of all the fucking shit he could stomp on, it’s more a matter of thinking what would make him richer…like bullshit tax code rape.

          Some of the shit I’m thinking I don’t want to say lest it somehow become real.

          He has the power to receive ambassadors…and I wouldn’t doubt he would take bids from them too. Then they get mad at him when he doesn’t have the attention span to cover his end of the deal. Terrorism ensues.

          • VeryOff says:

            Congress guts social security even though it does jack shit to help the deficit. Trump doesn’t veto.

            Two goddam years of total chaos until we can try to clean house.

            Meanwhile, the planet tips over the edge and the pentagons predictions of instability become real right on the clock.

            California’s big one hits in January of 2018. The economy and budget is in complete disarray so funding for repairs is fucked. People start dying because there isn’t enough water or power during the heatwaves that have escalated that summer.

            Guess what, spring brings completely unpredictable weather and the Midwest experiences unprecedented flooding.

            White supremacists get used to seeing Pence on TV and take it as a sign to kick the race war up a notch. Police forces under pressure hire anyone they can find even on a temporary basis. Insanity ensues.

            Meanwhile the NSA is doing waaaay crazier shit than usual.

            I know I have some things wrong in there about who can do what…but those are the gestural directions.

          • We'reDoomed says:

            Trump is a relentless tribal drum banging with delusion as the whoops and cries of Fox News twist through the air like flying snakes. The jungle heat has caused us all fatigue as we stumble through the cutting grass; irritated and beleaguered. The flesh falls from our skin without notice and we see an opening to the river. Mosquitos of regret and taxes cloud around us. They settle on exposed bone before crawling to the remaining flesh. The insanity pounds in our ears as we stumble wildly. we bend to drink at the warped rivers edge; the hallucination intensifies. That’s not a crocodile of global warming, it’s our daughter that we secretly want to kiss. We become his psychopathy before we are swallowed whole.

            Brought to you by ambien and codeine…your number one defense against the end of the world.

          • Gaybeard says:

            Entertaining and well written but ultimately too speculative. A lot of those things are plausible, but like I said earlier, it’s mostly localized. Bush fucked things up a great deal when he was in power but it was still only 8 years. He did an impressive amount of damage but in the end, it was just another phase in a long and ceaseless march through history.

    • Sam says:

      He would be terrible for the world, you fucking numpty. And sweet jesus, spare us the “galvanize the opposition” argument. Why didn’t it work in fucking 2004 then? Sweet Christ on a cross, I can’t. I can’t.

      • Gaybeard says:

        Oh put it back in your purse, would you Sam?

        I acknowledge that he would be pretty bad, but the whole world doesn’t revolve around who the American President is, Sam. Why didn’t it work in 2004? Because you were at war and the economy hadn’t collapsed yet, duh.

        I’m not advocating for the guy or suggesting you vote for Trump or not vote at all. I just don’t think it’s time run around like chicken little yelling “I can’t. I can’t”

      • Gaybeard says:

        Agreed, thus my comment about galvanization and the possibility of a tectonic shift. I said that exactly because Trump would be so much worse than Bush.

    • WhoAmI says:

      Of course Trump isn’t Hitler, Hitler is dead. But he sure as hell looks like Hitler, and sounds like Hitler, and smells like Hitler. Pre-election Hitler at least. What Hitler’s rise to power teachs us is that a angry little clown of a madman who the intelligentsia thought couldn’t make it (because he was a nobody in politics ! And come on, the people aren’t that stupid !) actually made it, almost eradicated said intteligentsia from his country, along with the gay community (which was huge in Berlin back then), the bourgeoisie, and even turned his back on his rich patrons and the military. Not to mention what he did to other countries. All of that, and he got elected under the Weimar Republic fair and square. And effectively ended it.
      Now Trump may probably not be able to ruin America to that extent, but he certainly has plenty of room to be a nightmare.

      • Gaybeard says:

        No, he doesn’t look (well, maybe the hair) or sound like Hitler at all, and he’s certainly not the first angry clown to come to power at a time of crisis. Trump is also not the first populist demagogue to use divisiveness and racism to get himself elected. Not every unscrupulous politician is a Hitler analogue. If you take the time to read Trump’s victory speech he talks about protecting the LGBTQ community and protecting black people being treated unfairly, not hunting them down and systematically destroying them. Now, he almost certainly doesn’t give a fuck about those people, but at the same time he’s not meticulously planning their mass murder on an industrial scale. The only way he’s Hitler is if he does that, and I see no evidence that he is. I don’t think anything is gained by comparing him to A.H. other than reducing the impact of the comparison and underplaying the true horror of Nazi Germany 1933 – 1945.

        I get that you’re freaked out. Americans have never lived through a dictatorship so I guess I can’t really blame you too much for engaging in hyperbole, but trust me, this guy’s no Hitler.

        • Anonymous Poster says:

          As someone who is part of the LGBT population of this country: Fuck Donald Trump for using us as a justification of his Islamophobic rhetoric. Democrats haven’t been the overall best allies to LGBT people, but Republicans have never been allies to us because right-wingers think supporting LGBT civil rights equals right-wing political suicide—unless, of course, they can exploit LGBT people to stoke fears of a more “dangerous” or “heinous” group of people and act as if they’re being “allies” by promising to protect us from The Evil Barbarians.

          I am bi, and I do not—nor will I ever—represent the kind of hatemongering bullshit that Trump spewed last night. Fuck him for trying to turn me and every other LGBT person in America into a tool for the GOP’s hatred of Muslims.

          • Gaybeard says:

            You’ll hear no argument from me on that point, and I also agree with you.

            That said, suppression isn’t the same as genocide, and that’s the only point I’m trying to make.

        • WhoAmI says:

          Girl, I’m the first one to hate the nazi argument, but when someone so painfully remember me of Hitler I call it. To be honest I wonder if Trump doesn’t actually take direct inspiration from Hitler’s speeches for his own (seriously tho, watch some recorded public speeches of Hitler, it’s a staple).
          I get that you don’t want people to compare to him lightly, nor to downplay the horrors of his regime. Trust me, as someone born and raised in Western Europe, I know them well. And the scariest part is that Hitler really wasn’t a devil directly spawned from the circles of Hell, neither were the clever assholes helping him. Neither was he particularly brillant or self-made. He wasn’t an exception in the matrix. He was a byproduct of his times and society just as much as anyone else, just as much of a human as anyone else, and that’s exactly why he and his followers commited so much atrocities.
          Saying Trump reminds way too much of him is an unconfortable truth, but denying it is like denying Scar from the Lion King was a direct Hitler expy.

          • Gaybeard says:

            I’ve listened to some of Hitler’s speeches and I honestly don’t see the resemblance beyond the promise of bread and work for the masses. His rhetorical style reminds me more of Milošević than Adolf. S.M. was a bad guy, but again, no Hitler. I take your point about every politician with dictatorial tendencies bearing a resemblance to Hitler in some sense, but I disagree that Hitler was not exceptional. As an individual, definitely not exceptional, but as a phenomenon in history, absolutely.

          • WhoAmI says:

            I don’t know if you can really call him an exceptional phenomenon when at the time he ruled there were several other guys ruling other countries like Stalin, Mussolini, Franco or Hirohito (if anything I find Hirohito way more scary).
            Anyway, back to karaokeing to Be Prepared.

          • Gaybeard says:

            There were several guys who were dictators, but they weren’t like Hitler. Key difference: extermination camps. Yeah Stalin had gulags but they were for political prisoners and criminals, and while brutal they weren’t for extermination or genocide. He also perpetrated purges, but they were politically motivated and directly related to his ability to keep a hold on power.

            Hirohito is the most harmless of the bunch. The emperor of Japan had been a figurehead in Japanese politics for more than a 1000 years by the time WW2 rolled around. While Hirohito was more active than most emperors, he held nowhere near the kind of power and control that Hitler, Stalin, Mussolini or Franco had.

          • BENJAMIN SILVERSTEIN says:

            The historical parallels aren’t there in regards to Trump. A asshole like Ted Cruz would be a much greater threat, but even he is a ways away from a real parallel.

            Hitler rose to power by cobbling together a coalition of industrialists, military support, and a terrorizing group of street thugs. He had a political party committed to his agenda and to him personally that controlled a significant share of their form of representative government. Trump lacks all of these characteristics. Additionally, whereas Hitler had a political ideology, Trump’s response to politics is basically knee-jerk – he says what he says according to how he feels and what he thinks his audience wants to hear. That type of political “philosophy” isn’t going to win many deeply committed supporters.

            Hitler then froze their free press and eliminated their form of representative government. He could ONLY do so by having enormous support from the powers that existed there at that time and with a large base of support in the population, which was deeply frustrated with representative democracy after a shattering economic depression. Say what you will about the GOP, but they are not THAT crazy, and the population of the U.S. isn’t ready to chuck democracy out of the door yet, either.

    • Rainbowpony says:

      Ok, as a total nerd who loves dystopian fiction (can they be a qualification?), we don’t live in a dystopia. You live in a country where free speech us fairly well protected. Etc. A thousand etcs. You have every right to freak out about current state of affairs, but relax.

  20. Benjamin Silverstein says:

    I decided after 2012 election that I’d always vote third party unless there was a very good reason not to, so I’ll do that. It’s a “protest vote” that can be seen in the record, but I recognize it’s futile, too. The job of the individual in a functional democracy is to vote for the candidate that most closely aligns to that individual’s beliefs and interests. No individual voter is responsible for who wins in a functional democracy. Each person votes, the votes are tallied, and the majority decides the winner.

    In a functional democracy, it’s the job of each candidate to make a convincing case that they will adequately represent the beliefs and interests of the individual voter. They have to earn their votes, and they shouldn’t ever expect them without doing so. Of course, we have a deeply dysfunctional democracy – a freaking Bizarro world democracy – and pretty much every election boils down to a choice between horrible and bad. If there isn’t a candidate out there that comes close to your beliefs and interests, then not voting would be adequately representative, although afterwards you’d be blamed for not voting (or for voting third party) by others if the bad candidate didn’t beat the horrible candidate, as if you individually had any control over the outcome, and it was all your fault. Ce la vie.

    – millennial retard

    • Ruban says:

      Voting third-party in the current election shows incredible immaturity and selfishness, and is also a complete throwaway vote.

      The shitty system we have now is what we have, so vote Dem given the two choices.

      If you want to be fairly represented rather than be constrained by the shitty two-party system in America, do your civic duty and vote Dem right now – and then work in grassroots movements to move from a 2-party system to something that more fairly represents the whole spectrum of America’s people.

      Yeah, I know that it requires you to, like, DO something.

      • Betsy says:

        Fuck yes, this. The common rationale for these third-party voters seems to be that the way politics works is that you get the perfect president and then you get to sit on your ass for 4 years and do nothing. That’s not how meaningful change has ever happened – certainly not the New Deal.

        Remember how Sanders is working to create a movement? Yeah, that’s the fucking reason.

        • Anonymous Poster says:

          The GOP can get what it wants politically because it has shitloads of groups on its side—like the NRA, for example—who will work 24/7 to support their causes and get Congress critters to vote for those groups’ causes.

          They do the work. If you’re not willing to do the work to affect change, change won’t happen. If you want change, do the fucking work.

          • BENJAMIN SILVERSTEIN says:

            Hillary announced Tim Kaine to be her vice presidential running mate. Tim Kaine. Mike Pence light. I’m supposed to support that shit?

          • Betsy says:

            Hey, don’t think I don’t empathise with you on this. Democrats are being stupidly tone-deaf, at the very least.

            But historically, huge changes have taken place because of continuous action and participation. One of the candidates could be swayed, even if it’s only for cynical reasons. The other… I doubt it.

          • Radio says:

            How similar is Tim Kaine to Mike Pence? Since serving in Congress, he’s voted 100% pro-choice. Sure, he’s a big money democrat, but of course that’s who Hilary would choose.

    • G says:

      I mean, given that it’s a job, it’s not just about “the candidate that most closely aligns to that individual’s beliefs and interests.” It’s also about whether you think they can do the job with some skill. I feel like a lot of die-hard Sanders supporters don’t realize that while Sanders might hew closer to a Hillary-supporter’s political beliefs in some ways, I knew a lot of Hillary-supporters who were concerned with whether Sanders had the skills or interest in some of the duties and skills that are a necessary part of being president. I’m not even going to discuss Jill Stein or the libertarian because they have no chance at all period, and I’d love to hear where all these people are who vote for “the candidate that most closely aligns to that individual’s beliefs and interests” during midterms.

    • Strangely Rational says:

      “The job of the individual in a functional democracy is to vote for the candidate that most closely aligns to that individual’s beliefs and interests.”

      Fuck that selfish bullshit. I’m voting for someone who is electable and who I believe is better for current society as well as the future. My individual interests are not the point.

      • Anonymous Poster says:

        Besides, individual interests are what we have Congress critters, state/local politicians, and lobbyists for.

  21. Pauncefoot says:

    oh my, you people have no idea. I’m in the UK, following ‘Brexit’ and experiencing the reality unfurling before us daily, of a rapidly shrinking chaotic economy, our opposition party in tatters, racists and other bigots running amok – feeling like they’ve been given carte blanche to let out all the nasty, and one of them hanging out in the US, flirting with the Trump team. Oh you wait, we had all that here too – anarchy and ‘why bother’, and protest voting and la la la. But I don’t think you can really imagine what it was like to wake up to that reality, I certainly couldn’t, and when it arrived it was dread of the like I’d never felt before. And all the regret, from everyone who felt they’d been misled and lied to and how sorry they were that they didn’t do more or they’d made a mistake. What on earth are you going to feel when you wake up to the Trump nightmare? And know that your privileged antipathy contributed to it. Don’t do it, vote Hilary for gods sake, spare a thought for us too – I don’t think we could take it either, after all this disappointment and anxiety, if you allow that lunatic to take charge.

    • hanbanjo says:

      I haven’t talked to anyone that’s currently experiencing Brexit. I don’t know much about UK politics, but what the fuck is happening out there? What the fuck happened?

      • Pauncefoot says:

        basically the UK just decided to quietly pack one’s bags and leave (the European Union, the world stage, something or other). Caused by the general public’s misty-eyed nostalgia for something along the lines of ‘Make Britain Great Again’ (sound familiar?) which was just the tagline of some power-mad numpties, who’ve all now admitted they lied and have no idea how to actually steer us through this mess, as there wasn’t a plan, as they weren’t actually expecting to win. So off we go into our sunset, we had a go, we enjoyed the carousel of the world economy for a bit and it was fun while it lasted. But now we’ll be out the back, in the shed, smoking our pipe and watching the world burn from our rocking chair. Pop the kettle on dearie would you? Cheerio!

        • O. says:

          Of course, all this Brexit nonsense could be avoided if our new Prime Minister rejected the referendum vote outright as the result of the referendum and subsequent Brexit isn’t legally binding like an election is. Particularly as the BBC news broadcast complete idiots making statements of “Oh, I didn’t think my vote counted” like the referendum was some Twitter poll… But no, Theresa May is currently parroting the phrase, “Brexit means Brexit,” across Europe and like Richard Branson said, “in business, if you make a bad decision, you rectify it.” Sterling still hasn’t recovered to pre-referendum levels, either. After the referendum result, overnight, the UK economy dropped from 5th largest in the world to 6th. Today, it was announced that manufacturing has slowed, too, and the economy is predicted to shrink several percent over the next few months which means we’re sleepwalking into another recession. The ironic thing being that the people most effected by the cuts in the last UK recession are the ones who voted for this Brexit.

          Everything would be a lot easier, financially and socially, if things went back to before. The Brexit win has resulted in an open season for racists with immigrants being told to “leave our country,” to their businesses being petrol-bombed. It’s disgusting. It’s unsurprising that anyone with an Irish parent or grandparent is applying for Irish citizenship and an Irish passport as they’re still in the EU and recognise dual-citizenship.

  22. J Lynn says:

    Re “two-party system”
    This is gonna be long, so take a piss and refill your drink …

    Each US major party is not supposed to be an advocacy group with a coherent agenda, like some Euro parties. Instead, each US major party is a friable coalition, a shifting collection of informal sub-parties who sometimes agree and sometimes disagree with each other. Each US major party is thus analogous to a “ruling coalition” under a multi-party parliamentary system. In order to function, US parties should NOT be a thoroughly emulsified, ideologically pure entity. In our system, the Presidential elections are coalition vs. coalition.

    If one’s political niche is not currently represented within one of the major parties, the solution under the existing US system is to organize your fellows, then shove in & make a place for it. Don’t sit there like a consumer waiting to be offered a “product” you like. You have to join the team then fight for the platform you want, backing it up with votes and won elections down-ballot.

    In return, the party’s high-level nominees are supposed to adapt to and represent the platform demands, even if they didn’t originally.

    Two examples: Used to be that women’s rights had virtually no place in the Democratic (or Republican) parties — even after women’s suffrage. Not until the 1970s did so-called “women’s issues” matter within the Democratic party. And not because male party leaders thought it would be a good idea — NO. Because women joined the party and demanded their positions be added to the list, and backed up their demands with votes. Likewise, on the other side, evangelical Christians had no major-party home until the 1970s, but they joined the R’s and started voting and look what f-ing happened. (Of course, once a constituency is identified, some politicians will try to woo them, so it’s a two-way feedback loop — but the process usually doesn’t happen without a group self-identifying as a potential voting bloc.)

    The principle of parties-as-coalitions, instead of parties-as-ideologically-pure fronts, is why in 2008, 2012 and, I hope & believe, 2016, the Democratic Party has been better off than the Republican Party. The Democrats are functioning as a multi-ethnic coalition that includes the liberalist liberals as well as relatively more small-c conservative, moderate Dems.

    By contrast, the Republicans arrived at this unhinged point partly because of the “tea party” movement, which demanded ideological purity and “primaried” moderates out of office from the right. With the moderates gone and replaced by ideological zealots like Cruz, the Republicans in Congress became only interested in thwarting Obama, not working on legislation to address general-electorate concerns. With no legislation, Congressional Republicans were literally doing nothing for their constituencies — other than fulfilling their promise to be obstructionist. Republican voters claimed to want this, but guess what, it just makes everything worse, and Obama naturally turned to what power he had without Congress — executive orders and administrative rules. This further enraged the moderate-purged R base, and the stirred-up mob has turned to a authoritarian strongman instead.

    God willing, Trump is probably going to lose — unless of course liberals self-sabotage, as they commonly do. At any rate, the Republican Party is currently a lunatic disgrace because they turned to purity-tested ideology, rather than coalitional pragmatism. I believe there’s a strong cautionary tale for the left there.

  23. Grouch says:

    In this election, a vote for a third party is a vote for Trump. Voting for the Green party or the libertarians is even worse than not voting at all, because if someone bothered to haul themselves to the booth, they’re both smart enough to know a bit about politics, and narcissistic enough that they’d rather say “look at me” than use their tiny shred of power to avert catastrophe.

  24. Alyssa says:

    I truly believe that Donald Trump is the other candidate so that we all go out and happily vote for Hillary (and, are content with her as president).

    Also, didn’t Al Gore win the 2000 election popular vote?

    • J Lynn says:

      Yes, he did on a nationwide level by over 500,000 votes.

      And very possibly was going to win Florida, too, if the recount hadn’t been stopped by the man Trump referred to last night as “our beloved Scalia.”

      However, don’t agree that Hillary or any other Democrat made Trump the nominee. The Republicans did that to themselves.

  25. J Lynn says:

    Re conversation about Trump & Hitler upthread (the replies are getting skinnier & skinnier w/ indents so putting this here):

    TLDR – He had a book of Hitler speeches by his bedside! … but also, perhaps, too lazy to read them??

    Quote from NYer: Trump’s first wife, Ivana, famously claimed that Trump kept a copy of Adolf Hitler’s collected speeches, “My New Order,” in a cabinet beside his bed. In 1990, Trump’s friend Marty Davis, who was then an executive at Paramount, added credence to this story, telling Marie Brenner, of Vanity Fair, that he had given Trump the book. “I thought he would find it interesting,” Davis told her. When Brenner asked Trump about it, however, he mistakenly identified the volume as a different work by Hitler: “Mein Kampf.” Apparently, he had not so much as read the title. “If I had these speeches, and I am not saying that I do, I would never read them,” Trump told Brenner.

    From this week’s New Yorker tell-all from Trump’s Art of the Deal ghostwriter,

  26. Thanks for posting this; got me off my ass. Donated and signed up to volunteer for Hillary. Makes me feel less helpless and hopefully any little bit of help will further her cause.

  27. definitely not batman says:

    Re: the Hitler debate. I know the comparisons to Hitler are an internet joke at this point, but the man got *elected.* And not on a genocide platform. It didn’t happen overnight, they slid into fascism blindly, probably all the while thinking that he can’t be that insane. Does the term “banality of evil” mean anything to you?

    It’s not what they say they’ll (not) do that’s the problem. It’s what you think they couldn’t possibly be capable of. You look at Trump and see a buffoon, you think to yourself “there is no way he could do something like X” but do you really want to take that chance? It’s like some of you haven’t learned anything from Breaking Bad smh

    • Gaybeard says:

      Yeah, Hitler did not on a genocide platform, but the guy had a book in which he talked about exterminating the Jews! He very clearly laid out what he believed and what he was planning to do. Unless Trump or one of his ghostwriters has one of those lying around, it’s not a convincing parallel at all. While Germany did gradually slip into fascism, Hitler did not, and his goals were fairly clear throughout.

      Second: yeah Hitler got elected into office, but he was given the Chancellorship by the conservative bankers and businessmen who thought he was the best bet for their self interest against the more dominant socialist party. They thought they were buying him when they actually gave him the keys to the palace. On the other hand the Republican establishment completely rejects Trump and has done everything to keep him from power.

      I personally don’t see Trump as a buffoon. I see an unscrupulous egomaniac willing to say whatever needs saying to take power. That’s the type of person that’s willing to do horrible shit to stay in power, no question. But does that make him a genocidal maniac? No it doesn’t. There’s simply no evidence at all that what was on the horizon for Germany is on the horizon for the US.

        • Gaybeard says:


          That’s a war crime, sure, but every President who has ever taken office since WW2 has been responsible for at least one of those.

          • Strangely Rational says:

            It’s genocide once you connect all Muslims to terrorism and go after them as a group under the guise of “keeping America safe” (sound familiar?). There are people on the right who would be more than happy if every last Muslim disappeared off the face of the planet.

            Even in my own family, I’ve been appalled by the Christians who have bought into this hatred; these were always the loving Jesus-following type and not extremists, but even they’re being caught up. Months ago, they swore they’d never vote for Trump. Now they’re not just going to hold their noses and vote for him – they’re actively supporting him. Trump is a disease that decreases intelligence and reason while increasing anger, which is a toxic combination.

            So it’s not just Trump I’m worried about. On his own, he can’t do much. The people who terrify me are his supporters; i.e., the mob. Do not underestimate the damage that can arise from the mob establishing a powerful leader.

          • Gaybeard says:

            If he wins things will be bad and Muslims might be discriminated against and rates of hate crimes might go up. Hell, they might even flirt with internment like they did to the Japanese in WW2, but they will not systematically exterminate them. The above happening is a tragedy, but it won’t end in genocide.


        Rome had its Caesar, a populist who bucked the power structure. He was murdered on the floor of the Senate, and Rome got the real tyrants after that. Augustus won power by coalescing the power structure behind him (same with Hitler).

        Trump lacks this ability completely. He has no armies behind him, he doesn’t have the moneyed interests behind him, he doesn’t have the media behind him (which, despite its interest in making a buck off him, is currently running a full assault on him), many GOPers despise him, Democrats hate him, he has no political philosophy other than mindless pandering, and he lacks a cadre of fanatical supporters. The people that support him ONLY support him because he’s the one alternative in their minds to taking it in the ass for another Presidential term. (They’re wrong, of course.)

        History is a process, though. Things wouldn’t improve visibly with Clinton – we’d get to the same place eventually – although perhaps she buys a few years. That said, the population will be restless if Trump loses as well. Another 4-8 years of neoliberal economic policies, a stagnant Congress, and a status quo leader will only stir the pot further. During that time, some sociopath who does have half a brain will be studying the lessons of 2016 for an opening.

        We like to think we channel the tides of history. In isolated ways, that’s true, but in a larger sense, it’s really the tides that move us.

        This is strictly observation. People should act on their own conscience in these matters. Personally, I voted for Sanders in the SC primary, mostly because I figured it was the only chance I’d get to vote for him. After Obama fucked us I’m a third party voter 99.9% of the time. If you live in a swing state, and the choice was Clinton or Trump, perhaps you might want to vote Clinton and live with the self-hate from it. I’ve never bought into that line of thought but to each their own.

  28. Bry says:

    Annnd, Fuck. Hillary just picked her own Mike Pence. Enjoy that Hillary vote with the pro lifer attached. What a fucking joke.

    • Radio says:

      Well first, Tim Kaine is nowhere near Mike Pence. Not even close. He may be pro-life, but he’s not Mike Pence level. Pence Examples:

      Tim Kaine, meanwhile, has a fairly nuanced stance on abortion. Yes, he’s personally against it, but he generally supports pro-choice policies. He did push some anti-abortion stuff when he was governor, but since becoming a senator in 2012, he’s fought with the pro-choice crowd. He seems to have come to the conclusion that while he doesn’t personally support abortion, he doesn’t have the right to tell others that they can’t do it. That’s reasonable and thoughtful. And once again, he definitely doesn’t have Pence’s record of being anti-lgbtq, poverty, PP, education, etc, etc, etc.

      Also, if anyone wants to rant about him being untrustworthy because he hasn’t always been 100% pro-choice, then what is the point of any activism ever? What’s the point of all those opinion pieces on the internet? What’s the point of those Planned Parenthood facebook profile pic frames? What’s the point of calling your local representative and asking them to vote pro-choice? What’s the point of rallies and phone banks and flyering? What’s the point of talking to anyone who has different beliefs from you? What’s the point of any of it if you’re just going to spit at a person for not having the same belief as you before activism enlightened them?

      Second, well, he is pretty boring, though. And pro-NAFTA, pro-TPP, pro-free trade, and so on. I would’ve liked to see someone a lot more daring, but hey, change is slow.

      • Gaybeard says:

        NAFTA was a great deal for you guys, I’m surprised that there are people in the US who are against it. We’re the ones getting fucked over by it, haha.

        • Radio says:

          Well, NAFTA has fueled immigration from Mexico because it’s really messed with traditional agriculture, among other things, so that definitely affects the US. A trade agreement that fuels a system that makes people in one country so desperate they’ll walk across a dangerous desert to the other country where they may be shot upon arrival, looked down on, made to work for low wages, manipulated based on their documentation status, and so on, isn’t just one country’s problem.

          NAFTA has also supposedly caused some job loss in the US in the manufacturing sector, but apparently it’s debated, and I know less about that topic.

          • Gaybeard says:

            There are only a couple of industries in the US that are outproduced by higher quality lower cost outputs in Mexico and Canada. For example, Canada sells high quality low cost softwood lumber to the US and undermines local industry. However, Canada and the US have been in arbitration over US protectionism on the local industry for more than a decade, which has cost Canada billions of dollars. If the US ignores clauses in the NAFTA treaty there’s very little Canada can do about it except go to court. On the other hand there are clauses in NAFTA stipulating that Canada cannot reduce oil or energy exports to the US regardless of domestic need or a change in the availability of energy. It’s basically a tap that cannot be closed. That clause flies in the face of Canadian sovereignty but that’s a pretty fluid concept when you’re neighbours with the world’s only superpower. Basically, the US has a huge amount of benefit and leverage from NAFTA that is nowhere near reciprocal for Canada and Mexico.

            Re: immigration – that’s a good point from a social/moral standpoint. I can see a bipartisan consensus among the people wanting to end NAFTA while the political elite has 0 will to go through with it, on either side of the spectrum. The only politician who might go through with it is Trump, interestingly enough. Though even then, I really can’t see it. NAFTA is extremely beneficial to the US.

      • Bry says:

        Slow?! Glacial is more like it. Real change comes in bursts. The quid pro quotes that come from smarter men than you are meaningless. Whatever helps you cope.

        • Anonymous Poster says:

          “Real change comes in bursts.”

          Y’know, like that Internet thing—man, they just developed that and made it the most significant communications tool in human history and proliferated it throughout the modern world real damn quick, right?

          Except no, it took decades for the World Wide Web as it was when people outside academia could access the Internet to fully form. Even then, it still took another decade before it became so ubiquitous in modern life that having the Internet was nearly as important to modern life as having electricity, water, food, and shelter. In the timeline of human history (and moreso the history of all existence), sure, the Internet was a “burst”—but to people like me, that change from the Internet being a curiosity (and a place to find porn pictures) to a vital part of everyday life (and a place to find HD porn videos) was no mere “burst”. It was a slow, gradual change—like all major changes in society are.

        • J Lynn says:

          Positive change rarely comes in bursts. Usually the only kind of change that comes in bursts takes a LOT of casualties — e.g., Hurricane Katrina, Russian Revolution. When you look at the big positive changes in history, you’ll usually find really deep roots.

  29. Tom says:

    I’m sorry, but I do disagree with you. I am not from the United States, and thus I can not vote for Clinton, Trump or any third party, but I think this “third party voters suck because they don’t vote what I want them to vote” is a bit absolutist.
    Then again, I think I don’t like it because I am Spanish. In Spain, most of the political problems we have had were due to bipartidism, since none of the ruling political parties were able to lead a good agenda for the country (being the two only options, they were comfortable with some kind of turns system)… but people still voted for them because how on Earth would they vote for third, small parties who would never ever won. The thing is they have now, and even if small parties have not won they have now more than the 40% of the low camera, a single one of them having a strong 20%. As a result, Spain does not have an elected government still, which might not be good, but at least is forcing some sort of political change. And it is probable that, due to left-wing voters not voting the big old left-wing party, the right-wing party (right-wing in Spain is historically more cohesionate) will win again elections. But I would never blame those people who seeked democratic alternatives for a system they strongly disliked (even less when those people have already constituted a 20% of the low camera).
    Now, I understand that people in the US may be happy with their de facto bipartidism if it does work. I don’t know if it does for internal issues. And of course I know Bush didn’t for external ones. But I’ve grown up in this anti-bipartidist culture my whole life, and that’s why your advice (with which I’ve strongly agreed for the past three years) struck me in the face.

    • Strangely Rational says:

      The thing you have to consider is that we are not just electing a President this fall. We are electing a president who will immediately be able to fill a vacant seat on our Supreme Court, and possibly other/s over the next four years.

      The next four years are important, but they’re nothing compared with the future decades that this Supreme Court appointment is likely to impact. This directly affects our civil rights, among other issues – it is the deciding factor in whether a minority group is protected or allowed to be discriminated against, whether women have access to abortion, how elections are run, etc. For example, the Supreme Court settled the dispute that gave Bush the presidency over Gore in 2000. In other words, some of the most far-reaching decisions.

      Anyone who believes in liberal, progressive policies needs to vote for Hillary. Period, end of story. Right now, a protest vote is a philosophical exercise; a vote for Hillary is one that acknowledges the reality we’re going to be living in for years.

      Idealism is very well and good, but there is a time and a place, and this is neither the time nor the place. Those who can’t recognize that are mostly young and privileged, and haven’t had the life experience to understand that idealism is a luxury we can’t always afford.

      • Bry says:

        Unless you live in a swing state, you don’t matter, period. Margin of victory is irrelevant as we saw when Barack rolled over Romney. Yes, I’d prefer Hillary for the supreme court issue alone but no it doesn’t matter if you vote for her in a non contested state. Editorialized media ensures that 40% of the country votes red and the other 40% votes blue. There are no landslides. Everyone needs to grow the fuck up. Vote for whomever you want but ignoring the realities of this “democracy” serves no one and only protects the status quo.

        • J Lynn says:

          Vote percentages can obscure really huge numbers. In a country as big as the USA, a even a close race represents a difference equivalent to a significant number of people.

          For a presidential election, 40/60 result IS a landslide. That represents a difference of about 25 million votes (based on 126 million who voted in 2012 pres election, which had 57% turnout of eligible voters; it would be even more with better turnout).

          By way of comparison, 25 million was the population of Texas during the 2010 census (NY was 19m, CA 37m). So the difference is equivalent to the whole population of our 2nd-biggest state.

          That’s a lot of people.

          Even in a squeaker like Bush v Gore in 2000, Gore won the popular vote by 500K. That’s more than the incorporated-city-limits population of Kansas City, Sacramento or Atlanta. Not as dramatic, but still a very large group.

          • J Lynn says:

            Addendum: Realized perhaps not explicit enough.

            Point is, if a national campaign can move a default 50-50 split (taking Bush v Gore baseline) into a 60-40 victory, or even a 55-45, or even 52-46-2 including third parties, that is actually a pretty huge achievement, even if it doesn’t seem so at first glance. That’s millions of votes swung, or millions of people turned out who might have not made it to the polls.

            You’re correct, there’s at least 30-40% of people who would vote for Lucifer himself (the guy Ben Carson was talking about) if he were running on the Republican ticket. In 2008, 30% of the public believed Saddam Hussein was responsible for Sept. 11 — that percentage is either rabidly partisan or just stupid.

            Because of that, turnout wins presidential elections — and more so than persuasion. Turnout also brings in more Democrats at every level, including the all-important Congress. It’s a slogan, but it happens to be a true one: When Democrats turnout, they win. That’s why there’s been all this voter ID shit since 2008; it’s the best way to thwart the Obama coalition.

            But why does it matter if you’re NOT in a swing state? For instance, California’s fat margin is taken for granted, true, but that big Cali popular vote total still matters a lot in empowering the president, if not electing her (!). Because the bigger the victory, the bigger the mandate. Sorry, it really is true. I don’t need to “grow the fuck up,” I’ve first-hand seen it happen over several pres elections. Just one example: Remember when Bush won by more than predicted in 2004 and then snickered, “I got some political capital, and now I’m gonna use it, heh heh.” Chilling and blood-boiling!

  30. We'reDoomed says:

    Here’s the thing that really burrows into me. Trump isn’t just a possible or even likely threat. He’s doing real, substantial damage, right now. He’s building up misconceptions on top of fear. Ignorance of facts that aren’t emotional are difficult to correct. Ignorance built on fear is nearly impossible to eradicate in an unreasoning mind.

    He’s hiding everyone’s bigotry under the umbrella of “speaking your mind.” And those assholes are turning it into a shield to justify racism and paralyze social progress!

    The only wall he’s building is around people’s ability or desire to think.

    • Anonymous Poster says:

      That’s part of why voters must make sure Trump loses by wide margins in every state: If the voters repudiate Trump and all he stands for, they repudiate his entire campaign and everything he’s said and done (or will say and do) throughout it.

      Of course, to do that, liberals/left-wingers/Democrats/progressives/whatever term you use have to come together as a coalition and make sure that defeat happens—and if there’s anything liberals do best, it’s self-sabotagingly grab defeat from the jaws of victory.

    • Strangely Rational says:

      I don’t think so. Hillary is qualified and competent, and she will give us a solid Supreme Court that will protect our rights. Trump is completely unqualified and incompetent, and he will give us a Supreme Court that is going to fuck us all to hell.

      The people who imply that either one is as bad as the other are not using their thinking brains. I’m most disappointed by the liberals who have bought into a lot of the bullshit that the conservatives have thrown in Hillary’s direction. It’s most appalling when I hear them spouting Fox News sound bites.

      • The Derpy Bear says:

        Well then I hope for your sake that Hillary wins. It just seemed like a lot of my American friends do not like either. I think most are voting for Hillary though.

  31. Amy says:

    I agree with you. But one pro-3rd party argument trips me up a little, and I’d like to hear your thoughts. Pretty simple really– “vote for the candidate whose positions you agree with”. a friend defended her Jill Stein vote this way. She also thinks voting for Hilary is being cavalier ab the deaths of so many Iraqis, due to H’s vote. I’m excited to vote for Hilary (among other things, the thought that the first president my 4yr old daughter will know might be a woman make me so, so happy), but both these criticisms stuck with me.

    • Anonymous Poster says:

      Unless that candidate has a serious shot at winning, all the criticisms of voting third party still apply. You may not agree with all of Hillary’s positions and her voting record, but she still stands the least chance of fucking this country up if she’s elected—and I know that’s not the best argument for Hillary, but given her electoral opponent, it’s the only one I need.

      If you’re waiting for a perfect white knight on a shining steed to ride in and fix everything wrong with this country, you’re going to be waiting a while.

  32. C says:

    As someone from Australia I actually disagree. Last election I voted for what is considered a minority party – this is because my morals and beliefs aligned most with them. I stand by that. Both the right and left here are not focused and very much out of touch there is nothing in policies addressing people under 35 and I worry about the future. Here there is mandatory voting – I’m sure if more people voted there would less of a problem? I get how voting for minorities makes a problem in a way but I’d prefer someone representing their area properly than someone just in it for the power and $$$.

    • bang says:

      Australia has a different system though. You have a preferential voting system (which is great)! America does not.

    • Dee says:

      Yep, listen to Bang. Australia’s voting system is completely different (I’m Australian too but now live in the US) – 1 person is 1 vote in Aus, whereas here things get messed up based on the state you live in. The candidate who receives the greater number of votes here across the country may not actually become President. And in Australia, you don’t vote for the PM, you vote for your local MP and the leader of the party who forms government becomes PM.

      So here, voting for a 3rd party candidate who has no chance of winning can be really dangerous. The logic a lot of people take is that voting for a 3rd party candidate sends a message that people are tired of the status quo, except that there is no chance someone other than Clinton or Trump will win, and Trump is a total fuck up. So if people who don’t support him vote for someone other than Hillary, all they’re actually doing is making it more difficult for her to win, which is THE ONLY WAY that a Trump presidency won’t happen. That’s why Coke is mad – it’s too dangerous here (and there are plenty of Australians who brag about doing donkey votes and then the election was so close it took days to call…they’re idiots too, but it isn’t likely to lead to as diabolical a situation as a Trump presidency…and the swing to independents likely WILL send a message to the major parties, especially when they have to negotiate with cross benchers to get anything passed).

  33. We'reDoomed says:

    I’m sorry if my lengthy posts are just noise. But I feel like the world is literally on fire and releasing even more carbon and there’s some guy throwing a party about himself. The more divided we are, the less possible it is that we can come together efficiently enough to fix these things and they are on a scale that would require untold effort and coordination. To my eye the planet is a morbidly obese person close to having a heart attack…and there are no doctors or treatment facilities that are big enough to help. There is no planet hospital. So we need a president who has the attention span to hear several big problems and dig through them. This isn’t just the US Brexit…it’s the planets.

  34. Dee says:

    Has anyone else noticed that they’re often referred to as Trump and Hillary rather than Trump and Clinton/Donald abs Hillary?

    I’m going to start referring to him as Donald.

  35. Ashley says:

    this is the first time in a long time that i so strongly disagree with you coke that I’m gonna straight up tell you to fuck off and that youre part of the fucking problem.

    we didnt have free and fair elections, for starters. second, trump is on the DNC payroll, which isn’t being reported in the media but was part of the leaks – i can send you the excel file if you wanna see it. he’s a clinton plant. he’s SO SCARY AHHHH!!!! RUN!!! VOTE FOR THE WORST CANDIDATE THE DEMOCRATS HAVE EVER RUN! VOTE FOR THE CANDIDATE WHO CANT GET ELECTED ON HER OWN MERITS AND HAS TO RESORT TO SCARY TRUMP!

    if trump is such a problem, then why aren’t the democrats nominating the only person who can stop him? because trump isn’t going to be president. hillary will be president, regardless of how many people vote for her. the primaries were rigged, you bet your bottom dollar that the general will be rigged too.

    youre a sheep heading off to slaughter. but whatever. I’m voting for stein, and many of my friends are as well – and guess what, were all LGBT. hillary was against us. we don’t forget that. never voting for a democrat or a republican again, shame me all you fucking want. a trump presidency is what you lesser evil sheep deserve.

  36. E says:

    “Your boyfriend can go fuck himself, and you can tell him I said that.” I don’t know why but that last line left me in stitches, just the image of having to tell your boyfriend that the anonymous queen of the internet told you to go fuck yourself.

    But yes, 100% agree, can you Americans just fucking pack it in and vote for Hillary so that Trump doesn’t incite some sort of apocalypse, for the sake of us Europeans who cannot vote but know this will affect us too.

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