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Hillary Clinton, Not Donald Trump or Cambridge Analytica, Is Gaslighting America

When can we as a country admit that the "most-qualified candidate in history" lost the 2016 election and get on with living our lives?

MGM, WikimediaMGM, WikimediaThe election of Donald Trump hasn't just brought a poorly mannered reality TV star into the Oval Office and our newsfeeds. It has also popularized the concept of gaslighting, or tricking rational people into thinking they're insane. The phrase is a reference to a 1944 movie in which Charles Boyer tries to convince his young bride, played by Ingrid Bergman, that she's nuts so he can cover up a murder and search for jewels hidden in the house they share (the house's gas lamps flicker due to Boyer's late-night searches, hence the title).

Go Google "Donald Trump is gaslighting America" and you'll find a constantly growing list of stories from outlets ranging from CNN to Teen Vogue to Vanity Fair to Refinery 29. The common thread is some variation on the theme that Trump's brazen lies, misstatements, and rhetorical sleights of hand are designed to drive us all batshit crazy by contradicting what we plainly see happening to the United States of America. At rock bottom, Trump's detractors believe there is simply no way that he could have legitimately won the 2016 election, especially against Hillary Clinton, of whom President Obama said, "I don't think that there's ever been someone so qualified to hold this office."

Yet it's not Donald Trump who is gaslighting us, but Hillary Clinton, whose complete and utter refusal to take responsibility for her loss is at the heart of what's so weird about contemporary America. You read it here first: Trump is the effect and not the cause of the ongoing mudslide that is the daily news. Ever since about 11 p.m. ET on November 8, 2016, Clinton and her allies in the media have worked overtime to provide increasingly fanciful explanations for her failure to beat the least-credible candidate ever in American history. Sometimes the apologias are conscious, sometimes not, but nobody really wants to accept what happened (in fact, even Trump himself couldn't believe it for a while, which helps explain why his transition was so incompetent). The result is a non-stop barrage of stories, some more credible than others, that Trump's win was the result of some sort of sinister machination that has undermined our democracy. Following from this interpretation every aspect of his behavior, from his bro-ing out with Vladimir Putin to his indifferent spelling and capitalization while tweeting, is just one more sign that we are living in a world gone stark, raving mad.

To be fair, Trump trades in delusion, such as his insistence that violent crime is at or near all-time highs, that massive voter fraud was the only reason he lost the popular vote, and that his inauguration was the most-viewed ever. These sorts of patently false statements do indeed constitute attempts at gaslighting. So, too, do his unconvincing denials about a sexual relationship with the porn star known as Stormy Daniels, his doctor's statement that he only weighs 239 lbs. (giving rise to the "Girther" movement), and his fanciful stories about how Japanese car makers use bowling balls in quality-assurance tests. Against such a backdrop, even the president's so-far-not-contradicted denial that his campaign colluded with Russia seems like a form of gaslighting. In fact, everything he says seems like it's intended to drive us insane or at least seriously question basic reality.

On their face, this week's exposes about Cambridge Analytica, the market-research firm that harvested information from as many as 50 million* Facebook users while working for the Trump campaign, don't just further the Trump-gaslighting narrative; they pour gasoline on it. Finally, you can hear #NeverTrump partisans and #theResistance cells all over the country scream with relief, we finally know how he won! While previous explanations have yet to be vindicated by evidence (the Russians hacked it!), widely embraced (the GOP suppressed the minority vote!), or pass the laugh test (white women succumbed to "ongoing pressure to vote the way that your husband, your boss, your son, whoever, believes you should"), the notion that Trump dialed deep into our psychographic hearts of darkness seems self-evident. As The Guardian puts it, Cambridge Analytica was not only able "to turn tens of millions of Facebook profiles into a unique political weapon," it "also attracted interest from a key Russian firm with links to the Kremlin." Christopher Wylie, the magenta-haired "data war whistleblower," is not exactly measured when he dishes on how he created "Steven Bannon's pyschological warfare mindfuck tool" that launched "an extraordinary attack on the U.S.'s democratic process."

What a gift to all of us Ingrid Bergmans suffering under the depredations of latter-day Charles Boyers! The large takeaway from the Cambridge Analytica story is supposed to be that of all the sad sacks in the Western world, Donald Trump and his former Minister of Dark Arts, Steve Bannon—currently palling around with French ultra-rightists—had super-special treachery that helped them steal an election properly owed to Hillary Clinton. We can finally rest easy knowing that, to paraphrase the final line of King Kong, "It wasn't Trump's overt racism and appeals to our basest instincts, it was social media that killed the Clinton campaign."

And yet the Cambridge Analytica angle is pretty much horseshit. Recall that the firm had a remarkably weak track record when it worked with the awful Ted Cruz campaign before getting hired by the Trump folks and that "even Cambridge Analytica didn't believe its own hype." Or that a New York Times reporter, Kenneth P. Vogel, tweeted this week, "It was (& is) an overpriced service that delivered little value to the TRUMP campaign, & the other campaigns & PACs that retained it — most of which hired the firm because it was seen as a prerequisite for receiving $$$ from the MERCERS."

In a smart piece published earlier this week, National Review's Michael Brendan Dougherty argues that the liberal-leaning solons of Silicon Valley and folks in the media are in the middle of creating a moral panic over social media now that they realize it may be used by right-of-center folks just as effectively (or not) as by left-of-center types:

Silicon Valley is working with its media and governmental critics to limit the damage to the center-Left going forward. You can see the dynamic in the way that the media generates a moral panic out of stories about how Brexit and the Trump election happened, and the way Silicon Valley responds. Fake news becomes a problem, and Silicon Valley responds by hiring progressive journalists as censors. I mean "fact-checkers." You can see it in the demonetization of YouTube videos. Or in the new sets of regulation being imposed in European countries that deputize the social-media networks themselves as an all seeing social censor.

Dougherty notes that when the Obama campaign used Facebook and other forms of social media to win its presidential races, the press swooned. Writing in MIT's Technology Review in 2012, Sasha Issenberg gushed that Obama's team had created "a new political currency that predicted the behavior of individual humans. The campaign didn't just know who you were; it knew exactly how it could turn you into the type of person it wanted you to be." That, says Dougherty, was just one more sign that Barack got it, that he was an iPod-using cool kid:

Today's Cambridge Analytica scandal causes our tech chin-strokers to worry about "information" you did not consent to share, but the Obama team created social interactions you wouldn't have had. They didn't just build a psychological profile of persuadable voters, and algorithmically determine ways of persuading them, but actually encouraged particular friends — ones the campaign had profiled as influencers — to reach out to them personally. In a post-election interview, the campaign's digital director Teddy Goff explained the strategy: "People don't trust campaigns. They don't even trust media organizations," he told Time's Michael Sherer, "Who do they trust? Their friends?" This level of manipulation was celebrated in the press.

But all of this presupposes that the reason why Trump won and Clinton lost was because the billionaire availed himself of unfair, shady, and possibly illegal information. And while there's little doubt that Facebook needs to "step up" regarding its privacy policies (in the words of Mark Zuckerberg), the reality is less interesting but ultimately more convincing. Exit polls showed that Clinton simply didn't turn out the voters she needed to in order to win. Around 136 million votes were cast and it turned out that about 77,000 of them in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and especially Michigan determined the outcome. Republicans and Democrats can reliably turn out a certain minimum number of voters; in presidential contests, the winner will be the one who either generates more enthusiasm (such as Barack Obama did in 2008 and 2012) among partisans, or doesn't completely turn off his own party members (Trump). Hillary Clinton ignored at her peril voters in states that she assumed to be locks for her.

In December 2016, Politico's Edward-Isaac Dovere* noted that Clinton managed to lose Michigan, which had voted Democratic in the past six presidential elections.* Yet "Trump won the state despite getting 30,000 fewer votes than George W. Bush did when he lost it in 2004." Dovere argues:

In results that narrow, Clinton's loss could be attributed to any number of factors — FBI Director Jim Comey's letter shifting late deciders, the lack of a compelling economic message, the apparent Russian hacking. But heartbroken and frustrated in-state battleground operatives worry that a lesson being missed is a simple one: Get the basics of campaigning right.

Clinton never even stopped by a United Auto Workers union hall in Michigan, though a person involved with the campaign noted bitterly that the UAW flaked on GOTV commitments in the final days, and that AFSCME never even made any, despite months of appeals.

Instead of nailing down every electoral vote in less-glamorous precincts, the Clinton campaign spent time raising money and running up popular vote counts in California and New York (she won the popular vote by about 3 million). The same take-it-for-granted attitude that led to her loss was on brazen display in her recent comments to an Indian audience, where she explained "I won the places that represent two-thirds of America's gross domestic product... I won the places that are optimistic, diverse, dynamic, moving forward.... We don't do well with married, white women...and part of that is an identification with the Republican Party, and a sort of ongoing pressure to vote the way that your husband, your boss, your son, whoever, believes you should."

Whenever an election is unexpectedly close, there will always be weird things that crop up to "explain" the result. But just as with George W. Bush's razor-thin victory in 2000, the real question isn't what put the underdog over the top but how the hell the odds-on favorite managed to squander such a lead. In 2000, Bush didn't win so much as Al Gore lost. So it is with 2016: Trump didn't win as much as Hillary Clinton did everything possible to lose. And now we are paying for her loss by being treated to an endless procession of explanations that will take the measure of every possible reason except for her own incompetence, arrogance, and sense of entitlement.

*CORRECTIONS: I originally claimed that the profiles of 30 million Facebook users had been compromised. The correct figure is 50 million. Edward-Isaac Dovere's was name misstated as Edward Isaac-Dovere. I wrote, "Politico's Edward Isaac-Dovere noted that had Clinton managed to hold Michigan, which had voted Democratic in the past six presidential elections, she would be president today." As he stated, "Flip Michigan and leave the rest of the map, and Trump is still president-elect."

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  • AlmightyJB||

    NEVER!

  • albo||

    The Revenge of Tracy Flick.

  • sarcasmic||

    These sorts of patently false statements do indeed constitute attempts at gaslighting.

    More like a bloviating blowhard bloviating.

  • colorblindkid||

    But the unprecedented is not the lies, but just how incompetent he is at telling those lies. That, and Trump has a press and media comprised of 90% Hillary voters, as opposed to Obama, who had a press and media comprised of 98% Obama voters.

  • sarcasmic||

    But the unprecedented is not the lies, but just how incompetent he is at telling those lies.

    I'm not even sure if it's really lies. I think its a mix of performance, exaggeration, boisterousness, and everything else that makes Trump Trump. He's an entertainer.

  • sarcasmic||

    That doesn't mean I'm among the entertained.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    The term is "braggadocio".

    The difference between braggadocio and lying, is that the liar is expecting you to believe what he says, in order to get something out of your mistaken belief. The braggart isn't trying to con you out of something, he just wants a better reputation than reality justifies.

  • sarcasmic||

    You just described the difference between Hillary and Trump.

  • Libertymike||

    Not so fast. Trump is the ultimate con artist. Its not as if being a braggart and being a charlatan are mutually exclusive.

  • sarcasmic||

    I don't disagree. But like BB said, I don't think he really expects people to believe him.

  • Nige||

    He expects to get away with lying whether you believe him or not. Neither the actual truth, nor the consequences for lying, are expected to have any consequences for him. This is apparently a very appealing trait to Republicans.

  • Fjvjcdjjs||

    "Trump is the ultimate con artist"

    That's a retarded take.

  • Toots shor||

    He's a salesman. It's called puffery and courts have ruled puffery isn't lying. You see it in advertising all the time. Everyone' "the best", "#1", "provides the most value", "has the lowest price", etc. Sometimes it's true, sometimes not. Who gives a shit?

  • Nige||

    We are being given a crash course on exactly who does not give a shit.

  • Agammamon||

    What is telling is that his incompetence on telling lies *doesn't even matter*.

    This administration is just an indication of how low the bar is set.

  • ||

    We keep repeating this every four years or so, don't we?

  • Elias Fakaname||

    Doctor Bashr: "Of all the stories you told me, which ones were true and which ones weren't?"

    Mr. Garak: "My dear Doctor, they're all true."

    Doctor Bashir: "Even the lies?"

    Mr. Garak: "Especially the lies."

  • LarryA||

    Actually, it's that the lies don't matter.

    Clinton supporters are still trying to understand why the tipping balance of voters voted for Trump. The answer is, they didn't.

    When they went to the polls they didn't agree with Trump's policies or style, and they still don't. They pulled the lever for him because they were just more afraid of what a Clinton presidency would look like.

    Her supporters are still saying, "If the voters just hadn't known all the things Our Hero did, they would have voted for her." There's still no comprehension that perhaps she shouldn't have done those things.

    Unfortunately, Trump supporters also don't understand why Trump won. Both sides are too busy trying to game the next election to actually run the country.

  • ravenshrike||

    He won because the media gave him millions upon millions of dollars worth of free advertising in the primaries and the GOPe decided Jeb frelling Bush would be the candidate to back. There were rumblings about dynasty in the 2000 election, and say what you will, republicans are at best uncomfortable with the idea of a presidential dynasty.

  • Nige||

    So what you're saying is they believed his and the Republican's lies about Clinton.

  • colorblindkid||

    But the unprecedented is not the lies, but just how incompetent he is at telling those lies. That, and Trump has a press and media comprised of 90% Hillary voters, as opposed to Obama, who had a press and media comprised of 98% Obama voters.

  • CE||

    He's acting like Trump Derangement Syndrome isn't real.

  • LynchPin1477||

    This is the first time I've actually seen the term "gaslighting" defined, so thanks for that.

    But with that definition in mind it seems like most politicians' behaviors are better characterized as "lying" or just "being wrong", than as gaslighting.

  • Rich||

    This is the first time I've actually seen the term "gaslighting" defined

    *** huffily ***

    And you call yourself a pre-pubescent boy!

  • Flinch||

    Have mercy, Rich. Black and white movies pretty much aren't shown anymore - they don't virtue signal to any current progressive cause, and/or don't advocate enough of what the pink mafia running Hollywood is into at the present time. In that perspective, a new blackout is emerging today's gradeschoolers can't readily grasp: the internet primarily supports a post-Clinton world, as that is where the bulk of content was created. The total bulk of information on any search engine distracts from a quaint thing we used to know as the public library - a place where you could find older publications that are un-altered [unlike the current electronic archive at the NYT]. We are about to lose a large chunk of our history, and Hillary sees that - hence 'gaslighting' has a chance to work on a mass scale without having to have alot of messy gulags in full Leninist fashion.

  • Mithrandir||

    The entire article could have been the last two sentences really.

  • Quo Usque Tandem||

    I say let them continue their gaslighting; the inability to attribute Clinton's loss to "her own incompetence, arrogance, and sense of entitlement" will only doom them to repeating themselves.

  • Rich||

    Sometimes the apologias are conscious, sometimes not

    "Apologia" -- I like it!

  • LynchPin1477||

    And yet the Cambridge Analytica angle is pretty much horseshit

    I've barely even followed the headlines about this story and I still could have told you that.

    I presume there are actually serious Democratic strategists out there taking a long, hard look at why Clinton lost and how to do better in the next election, instead of desperately latching on to one relatively mundane narrative after another. If not, they are just setting themselves up for future disappointment.

  • Sevo||

    "I presume there are actually serious Democratic strategists out there taking a long, hard look at why Clinton lost and how to do better in the next election, instead of desperately latching on to one relatively mundane narrative after another."

    If so, they're keeping mighty quiet about it.

  • gormadoc||

    It's not like they would make their next campaign strategy public knowledge. That would be retarded on so many levels. And from the post-campaign analyses, it sounds like the DNC had a good strategy this last election but Clinton refused to play it their way. This is just the Clinton camp trying to save face.

  • SimonP||

    Yeah, just winning special elections, flipping seats, winning lawsuits, etc.

  • hello.||

    Half a dozen elections with 10% voter turnout. #bluewave2018

  • Sevo||

    "Yeah, just winning special elections,"

    So Trump is the most hated guy evah, and the GOP is gonna take it in the shorts and we get a D who tries like hell to be a GOP, and he ekes out a 200-vote win over the Trump-backed guy.
    Yeah, Simon, you keep listening to those voices in your head.

  • Finrod||

    The easiest way for Democrats to do better in the next Presidential election: don't nominate Hillary Clinton.

  • Echospinner||

    Whatever Cambridge sold them was garbage anyway. Psychometric nonsense based on a survey and a lot of supposition. They may as well have been reading tea leaves.

    No sympathy for Facebook users either. Anyone who does not know by now that anything online can or is being used, hacked or mined is a fool. That includes what people post here and we all know that.

  • John||

    Democrats and the media won't be doing that Nick because admitting it leads to admitting a lot of other things; namely she wasn't qualified and that Trump might be right about a few things. And doing that is too much for these clowns to bear.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    ""namely she wasn't qualified""

    I hear people talk about she was or wasn't frequently, or if the Don is or isn't. The argument of qualification is largely made up in people's heads. There are very few actual qualifications to hold office.

  • John||

    Fair point. But whatever they are, I doubt being First Lady, an empty suit Senator and a failed and crooked Sec State are it.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    True, in a technical sense she was as qualified as Trump: Native born and older than 35.

    It's not that she failed to meet the official qualifications for the office. It's that she failed to meet the qualifications a political party would normally set for giving somebody their nomination.

    You know, like not being widely known to be corrupt, or being seriously lacking in people skills?

    But in a sense I guess she has some mad people skills, because she did manage to convince a party to give her the nomination despite all her obvious shortcomings.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    "" It's that she failed to meet the qualifications a political party would normally set for giving somebody their nomination."'

    An what were those qualifications? Infiltration? That's rhetorical of course. She stacked the DNC with team Hillary. It didn't matter what qualifications the DNC has had, they were not going to apply to the chosen one.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    For example, if time in government was a qualification, then Bernie had her beat by a long shot.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    That's what I meant: She's got mad people skills, but they were specialized: She was good at subverting political institutions. Not at persuading people to vote for her.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    ""She's got mad people skills, but they were specialized:""

    Yeah, like actually calling a former high ranking member of the KKK a mentor, yet the Don is the one called a racist.

  • BYODB||

    The head of the DNC going to work for her campaign, and working for her previously, was totally above board I'm sure.

  • Joe_JP||

    The required legal qualifications are small but actual qualifications for a good officeholder exists.

    You can be for or against any of these people w/o being a nihilist here.

  • UnrepentantCurmudgeon||

    The question of whether a person is "qualified" to be President depends entirely on what you want or expect that person to do once in office.

    Knowing generally what Hillary intended to do in office, I considered her unqualified.

    Having a vague sense of what Trump would do in office, I considered him unqualified (and no, his business experience did not help) but I thought he would be interesting.

    So I voted for Johnson because although I considered him unqualified (incapable of doing anything in office) he was for that reason essentially harmless.

  • CE||

    Most voters would consider a Senator or a billionaire CEO to be qualified for President.

  • Joe_JP||

    I'm unsure how many non-Trump voters ("most" would require many of them to agree?) thought Trump was "qualified for President," though I guess we need to explain what exactly that means.

    Ditto any senator (as compared to certain ones). Some senators probably are seen by most as not really presidential timber in the qualification department even if maybe they have some bare minimum qualifications. For instance, some aging perhaps losing a lot off their fastball type or someone who seems largely an empty suit. Maybe good enough to be one of a 100, but not to be POTUS.

  • UnrepentantCurmudgeon||

    I'm waiting for the next someone born in a log cabin, and preferably someone who oversaw the genocide of the American Indians or the slaughter of 700,000 of his fellow Americans.

  • LarryA||

    Be careful what you wish for. The way things are going, we may yet have someone overseeing either.

  • Rhywun||

    Trump might be right about a few things

    Most Reason writers will never admit that either.

  • Gaear Grimsrud||

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    Or that their criteria for qualification might be flawed.

    The way they keep pointing to Clinton's "resume" makes me wonder how many of them have ever interviewed or hired someone for a real job. If they had, they'd know that the hiring process is much more than just reading the resume and saying (based on the resume's claims) "Yep! That's the person I want to hire!". Typically the resume is just step one of the process to narrow down to the people you want to interview. In the interview you explore, among other things, whether the resume reflects the reality of the candidate. If they claim to have held a particular job but didn't credibly accomplish anything while they were there, that's a warning that the resume may be bullshit.

    For instance: yeah, so Hillary was Secretary of State. So what? What did she accomplish while she was there, other than violating the government's rules for handling classified information?

  • Libertymike||

    How about Bush 41?

    During the 1980 New Hampshire Republican primary, William Loeb, in his Manchester Union Leader, published a devastating editorial in which he punctured the myth that GHWB was more qualified than Ronald Reagan. Loeb noted that Bush didn't accomplish anything in his government musical chairs positions. He was right.

    In my view, Hillary was at least as, and maybe more, qualified than the ultimate phony cuck, GHWB.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    I don't deny that. Indeed, I'd be hard put to think of ANY president in my lifetime, at least, that was qualified for any job more complicated than sweeping a floor. I'm just applying the same criteria to Clinton. Heh, both of them. What the fuck was Bill really good for other than diddling silly young girls?

  • Libertymike||

    Agreed, but let me throw in some nuance.

    Bill was always a far superior orator than his cankled wife. He has also had better people skillz than the Shrillary. He also had far better game than his wife - in fact, I think he sold himself short in that department by choosing the trailer park trash and the crazy lower life types and the chubdibs, like Monica.

  • Finrod||

    Bill Clinton is the best politician I've ever seen at saying things that are technically true, but at the same time encouraging people to come to conclusions that are false. It won him the White House, twice.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    His big weakness, IMO, was that he took too much delight in his foes' frustration. It was never enough for the Clintons to skate, they had to do it in a way where their enemies knew they'd been guilty.

    Like "finding" the Rose Law firm records in the Map room a couple days after the statute of limitations expired, instead of just burning them. That was deliberately baiting their enemies, there was no other reason for it.

    The only reason he survived that habit is that Hillary was so good at corruption, and the GOP leadership were so dirty themselves that they could be blackmailed.

  • UnrepentantCurmudgeon||

    Bill did have the ability to "triangulate" on policy, i.e., find ways to bring pols from both parties together on single issues. He was the centrist operator supreme.

  • BYODB||

    How do we know he didn't accomplish anything in his role with the CIA? He was only there for maybe a year? But didn't he pave the road during that one year for the overreach we occasionally see the CIA engaging in?

    Of course, I'd almost prefer he didn't get anything done. (And personally I agree with your assessment. Plus, no new taxes my ass.)

  • Gaear Grimsrud||

    Well he recruited Noriega to manage his secret wars in SA. Although he didn't show a whole lot of gratitude in the end.

  • ||

    Well, we could look at his record in the CIA.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    Socked away a lot of money in her foundation, that's got to count as an accomplishment.

  • Eek Barba Durkle||

    Gary Johnson was, far and away, the most qualified candidate in 2016.

    He was the only candidate who had consistent success as a government executive.
    He was the only candidate who had consistent success as a private executive.
    He was the only candidate with direct experience on Mexican immigration.
    He was the only candidate who has been nailing the Middle East in foreign policy speeches for decades.
    His views more closely aligned with the average American voters than anyone else's.
    He was the only candidate with experience managing and reconciling a bitterly divided legislature of Rs and Ds.

    But Democrats and Republicans wouldn't vote for him because he momentarily missed an abrupt conversation-change at 5 in the morning, and "libertarians" were all pissed off that he didn't want to rewrite the Civil Rights Act to exclude gay people (thank Austin Peterson for his repeated dishonest attacks aimed at riling up narcissist paleolibertarians.)

  • John||

    What good are "qualifications" if you don't agree with the guy's positions? Democrats and Republicans didn't vote for Johnson because they didn't agree with his positions. Maybe they should have but they didn't. Pretending otherwise is just living in denial.

  • CE||

    I voted for him. He wasn't a perfect candidate, but by far the best one running.
    It should be criminal for the 2 establishment parties and the TV networks to collude to keep a ballot-qualified candidate out of the televised debates, thus denying him the stamp of viability, based solely on opinion polls taken long before most people have even considered the candidates in any detail.

  • Just Say'n||

    "He was the only candidate who has been nailing the Middle East in foreign policy speeches for decades"

    Yup, like when he told the Weekly Standard that he supported humanitarian wars, would keep a base in Afghanistan, and supported the deployment of US troops to get Kony.

    www.weeklystandard.com/yes-gar.....cle/522029

    The notion that Johnson was ever a non-interventionist was probably the greatest lie ever told about him. Johnson was an epic disgrace

  • Just Say'n||

  • hello.||

    Supporting interventionist wars would have even been forgivable if he could name and locate the countries he wanted to bomb to the stone age.

  • hello.||

    "libertarians" were all pissed off that he didn't want to rewrite the Civil Rights Act to exclude gay people

    The Civil Rights Act already excludes gay people you dumb motherfucker.

  • ||

    "other than violating the government's rules" this may be her best descriptor of any position she has ever held.

  • Butler T. Reynolds||

    "Trump might be right about a few things."

    But that's not saying much. Broken clock.

  • Rich||

    "We don't do well with married, white women [, who] vote the way that your husband, your boss, your son, whoever, believes you should."

    WTF are you talking about -- you married, white woman?

  • LynchPin1477||

    One thing's for sure - telling married white Republican women how weak they are is definitely going to get them to vote differently the next time around.

  • John||

    It is supposed to shame them. And it might work with a few of them

  • Rich||

    Perhaps. But it's "Stand by your *man*."

  • John||

    Hillary's entire political career is Stand by Your Man.

  • Earth Skeptic||

    While he gets a BJ.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    ""While he gets a BJ.""

    Or went out to night clubs in general. I've seen Bill a couple of times in clubs when he was the gov of AR. He was always with a woman, and it was never Hillary.

  • LynchPin1477||

    Yeah, and I think that might work, to a degree, if someone's social network is actually doing the shaming. Shaming doesn't work so well, though, when you don't respect the person trying to shame you.

  • UnrepentantCurmudgeon||

    Not really. Every Republican (or conservative) woman I know is proud of her personal strength and intellectual independence. You folks really need to spend some time getting to know the people on the other side. But I do understand that would undermine your ability to snark so readily

  • LarryA||

    ^This.

    About everywhere I've lived, particularly in the South, the Republican and Democratic Women's Clubs are better-attended and more active than the Democratic and Republican (both sexes) Clubs.

  • UnrepentantCurmudgeon||

    My wife is a married, white woman and I'm as certain as can be that she has never voted (or done anything else) the way I believe she should.

    Except make a mean corned beef and cabbage.

  • Rich||

    her own incompetence, arrogance, and sense of entitlement

    What is "I didn't explain my message well enough", chopped liver?

  • CE||

    What is "people don't really like me", too close to the truth?

  • Tony||

    The popular vote is a bit inconvenient isn't it when constructing these narratives? Any argument that relies on candidate popularity immediately falls apart when you realize that Clinton actually, by far, won the most votes.

    So geek out on electoral college esoterica if you want to explain the election. Otherwise anything you say is bullshit. More people wanted Clinton, by a lot, period. There is no bigger lesson to be learned from the 2016 election than that the electoral college is a crucible of disaster.

  • Rich||

    You realize, T, that a lotta guys might say "There is no bigger lesson to be learned from the 2016 election than that the electoral college saved the nation from disaster."

  • Tony||

    Those guys are idiots and they fuck their cousins.

  • Sevo||

    Says an ignorant piece of shit who fucks his dad and brother.

  • sarcasmic||

  • Quo Usque Tandem||

    Thanks; I missed that one.

  • sarcasmic||

    The first time I saw that movie in the theater I was sore for two days from laughing. Of course I'd watched every episode up until that point, so I got all the jokes. Good times.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    Same here.

    It was also fun watching a couple of parents take their kid(s) out of the theater in the first five minutes.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Tony's personal life revealed again.

  • Bacon-Magic glib reasonoid||

    *Collects from the Well of Commie Tears that is Tony*
    It's like the Fountain of Duped...it just keeps on giving.

  • ||

    Tears and crushed dreams, the only thing "communist" regimes ever had in surplus.

  • Lucius Fergeson||

    So you're saying you're perfectly fine with the tyranny of the mob, as long as you're part of the mob? It seems like you're even dumber than those idiots that fuck their cousins if you don't realize that the same mentality can be used against you, and that's why the Virginia and Connecticut Compromises, which established the electoral colleges, exist in the first place. I'm impressed how someone could truly be so stupid and be proud of it.

  • Finrod||

    Reminds me of a bit from Futurama:

    Leela: Fry, you're Bender's best friend. How could you let that mob kick him out?
    Fry: Ah, come on. Bender loves mobs.
    Leela: Only when he's in them and you know it.

  • Tony||

    I just think that in an election the winner of the most votes should win.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    ""I just think that in an election the winner of the most votes should win.""

    It's ok that you think that.

    What is not ok is trying to argue based on what you think should be instead of what is.

  • Azathoth!!||

    In the Untied States, the winner of the most votes in each state wins.

    Why is that a problem?

  • Árboles de la Barranca||

    Tonee, no sane person considers your bigoted and deranged comments insightful.

  • A Thinking Mind||

    Way to show respect for the fact that people can actually have different ideas.

  • Tony||

    Unlike Trump supporters, such role models for compassion and tolerance.

  • UnrepentantCurmudgeon||

    Says the guy who will go his grave never understanding why he can't communicate with us

  • OpenBordersLiberal-tarian||

    Exactly. The main lessons we learned are the following:

    1. The Electoral College needs to go.
    2. "Liberal" or "pro-Democrat" media bias is a myth.
    3. A frightening number of Americans will vote for a candidate running an explicitly white nationalist campaign.
    4. Putin is so powerful he can manipulate the outcome of a US presidential election.

  • John||

    It is not going anywhere. The constitution isn't going to be amended. Thinking it will just makes you a loser. Tough shit. You should have thought about all this before you decided to make your entire political ideology a brand for stupid people to feel smug about a designated enemy.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    I know you're just a troll, but this is an opportunity to ask: if Putin is picking our presidents, why did he pick Obama in 2008 and 2012?

  • sarcasmic||

    Fundamental transformation (towards a more socialist - the stepping stone to a communist - state).

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    LOL, that would explain why "progressives" didn't complain about "Russian interference" prior to 2016.

  • Paulpemb||

    And in fact ridiculed the notion that Russia posed any sort of threat at all: 'The 1980's called to ask for their foreign policy back!

  • Eidde||

    "Reset," anyone?

  • Flinch||

    Great question, but I'm guessing the only thing that will pop OBL's balloon is when the funding stops. Posts are about as organic as a palm tree flourishing in antarctica, and nothing falls outside the prog window. Libertarians disagree on alot of stuff, but we don't stay in one place either - it sometimes makes cat herding look like less of a challenge.
    But back to your question: when Obama said to a Russian official he would have more "flexibility" after the [2012] election, was that statecraft or a servile statement of solidarity, performed publicly to signal to others inside our own government? That, and how much Russian uranium did Hillary free up [for sale to Iran] with her Uranium 1 deal? Was Putin running our white house out of the State department? No wonder Rex had problems... that boat got holed below the waterline from the inside, not 'enemy fire'.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    ""There is no bigger lesson to be learned from the 2016 election than that the electoral college is a crucible of disaster.""

    If you look at the election map broken down by precinct, it shows the EC did it's job. But because it didn't turn out in your favor, you want to attack it.

  • Tony||

    What job? To deny the American people of their democratic will?

  • sarcasmic||

    To prevent tyranny of the majority.

  • Mcgoo95||

    Isn't "tyranny of the majority" the basic definition of Democracy? It's no wonder the "democrats" are so butt hurt by the electoral college....they have a fundamental mis-understanding of the nature of our Union.

  • Tony||

    So we're supposed to elect the loser of the election every time? Or what the fuck are you talking about?

  • sarcasmic||

    Or what the fuck are you talking about?

    This country is not a democracy. It is a republic. The states elect the president, not the people. Checks and balances.

  • Lucius Fergeson||

    >I won at checkers even though we were playing chess and I lost
    >I won the popular vote even though by the rules of our gov't, the person that wins the electoral college votes ala the Virginia and Connecticut Compromises is the president elect.
    ???????

  • Mcgoo95||

    Tony, go look at both the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. The word "Democracy" or "Democratic" is not used once. For good reason. It has been well understood for at least 2400 years that the son of the Democratic man is the Tyrant. The people that wrote the constitution understood this progression and sought to avoid it. Were nearing the endgame of democracy and are largely fighting about which side of the political spectrum our Tyrant will come from....

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    ""So we're supposed to elect the loser of the election every time? Or what the fuck are you talking about?""

    Are you being obtuse or stupid? Seriously. Don't you know that in this country it's the winner of the EC that counts? And not the popular vote.

  • hello.||

    Are you being obtuse or stupid?

    Yes.

  • Rebel Scum||

    So we're supposed to elect the loser of the election every time?

    Donald Trump won by the rules of the game being played. Try again.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    Tony thinks we are crazy for believing the truth.

    Who's gaslighting?

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    Really?

    If you don't know the actual purpose of the EC, then I suggest you do some research to get educated on the actual reason for it's existence.

  • Tony||

    Oh do enlighten me. Are any of those reasons relevant and do any of them outweigh the in importance the majority of Americans getting their way over the minority?

  • Citizen X - #6||

    the in importance the majority of Americans getting their way over the minority

    Man, it is not often that you see a fundamental defense of slavery on here.

  • Mcgoo95||

    Perfect response.

  • Tony||

    So why is it OK for the winner of every other election to win but not the presidential?

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    ""Oh do enlighten me"'

    Do you own damn research, it's friggin Civics 101.

  • Rebel Scum||

    do any of them outweigh the in importance the majority of Americans getting their way over the minority?

    That's actually the point, to prevent tyranny of the majority.

  • Tony||

    So instead we get the tyranny of the minority. Or tyranny, as it's often called.

  • hello.||

    Says the faggot who is a member of a minority that constitutes 3-4% of the population and wants the entire federal government to execute anyone who hurts his faggot feelings.

  • Brian||

    When you can show that the American people want to throw the constitution away when it's convenient for democrats, then go ahead.

    Any day now.

    Otherwise, there's nothing democratic about an illegal Hillary Clinton presidency.

  • Quo Usque Tandem||

    I personally do not want a shit hole like CA deciding who my POTUS will be, beyond their allotted electoral power; and had this turned out the other way around, will Trump getting the 3 million and Hilda getting the office, you would be praising it. Now just watch sacasmic's link above and shut your fucking mouth uncle fucker.

  • Tony||

    Much better to have an abandoned shithole like Montana decide.

  • Mcgoo95||

    I agree...at least those people appear to be rational. California can go suck a turd. They've turned the place into a dump.

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    Montana is beautiful Tony. Go visit it sometime. Nice people too.

  • BYODB||

    You're an idiot. Why would Trump even attempt to court the popular vote when that had nothing to do with winning the game. Your assumption that the EC is to blame for a major strategic flaw in the Clinton campaign is, as usual, telling.

    You don't have to like Trump to acknowledge that he was playing the game according to the rules, and Clinton fucked up and as usual is crying about the popular vote even while if she had won the EC and not the popular vote she'd be singing the opposite tune.

    Useful idiots, indeed.

  • Brian||

    Or those backwards, ridiculous people from Oklahoma. They're the worst.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    an abandoned shithole like Montana decide

    I guess Tony's too dim to realize that shitlibs are increasingly migrating there to get away from California tax burdens.

  • arbe59||

    Tony, has it occurred to you that Trump ran his campaign to take advantage of the electoral college? He won many more of the 50 popular-vote contests than Hillary did, and he won the presidency as a result.

    If popular vote count were the victory criteria, is there any chance Trump runs a different campaign, and possibly still wins?

    What your side needs to do is stop shooting themselves in the foot. Hillary threw away an entire demographic that had faithfully voted Democrat for years, and Trump got them. So instead of Montana, whose 3 electors were always going red just as surely as California's 55 were going blue, it's Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio, and Pennsylvania that decided it. And be sure, Hillary was just as responsible for Trump's victory there as he was. She doubled down on this behavior just this past week. And so far, with all their collective intelligence, democrat politicians and journalists now call these twice-Obama-supporting voters racist, showing they don't even understand basic facts about their own (former) voting base. Trump doesn't have to run a smart campaign to win re-election in 2020, he just has to not lose to a party of completely out of touch idiots.

  • Fjvjcdjjs||

    "What job? To deny the American people of their democratic will?"

    You knew the rules before you started, bitch, stop whining because you lost.

  • Finrod||

    Too bad for you the Democratic Party lacks geographic diversity.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    It's not just geographic diversity. Look at the people that were in the primaries. The repubs were diverse. Black, Hispanic, women, of various ages. The dems were running two old white people.

  • UnrepentantCurmudgeon||

    There was nothing new here. If people have paid attention to every election since oh, I don't know, WWI at least the "analysts" tell us ad nauseum "It's all about the electoral college". And it is. If Hillary's campaign really did not know that, then we have the real reason we lost: incompetent advisors. What a great recommendation for her as President.

  • Brian||

    Sometimes we put things beyond the reach of the whims of democracy: judges, constitutions, etc.

    It's all standard really, and you can't really make inferences about voting results under rules for victory that never happened.

    Eh, whatever. Enjoy your counterfactuals, if they're all you have left.

  • John||

    If the results had been the opposite and Trump won the popular vote and Hillary the electoral vote, Tony and his ilk would be defending it. It is always just fuck you let me win with these idiots.

  • Brian||

    If Hillary Clinton were actually popular, people would like her more.

  • Tony||

    Actually some of us have principles that transcend partisanship. Even those of us who are partisan for purely desperate practical reasons, such as the GOP is an existential threat to humanity.

    Winning by cheating or defying democratic will might be defensible to keep the ruinous GOP out of power. I still think the electoral college should be abolished.

  • sarcasmic||

    This country is not a democracy. It is a republic. The people do not elect the president. The states do.

  • Sevo||

    "Actually some of us have principles that transcend partisanship"

    Yes, some of US do, and you ain't one of us.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    Now you're claiming to have principles, a notion which you previously consigned to moronic children?

    Boy, Trump's election really has changed the world.

  • sarcasmic||

    Now you're claiming to have principles, a notion which you previously consigned to moronic children?

    Tony has always had one guiding principle: might makes right. That's why the left wants everything to be political. Once government gets involved, right and wrong are determined at the point of a government gun. Might makes right. Even when it is wrong.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    He expects to be the one holding the gun. Maybe he will be; and maybe he's in for a big fucking surprise.

  • sarcasmic||

    He expects to be the one holding the gun. Maybe he will be; and maybe he's in for a big fucking surprise.

    Ever noticed how leftists switch their heartfelt convictions at the drop of a hat when there is a shift in popularity? They have no principles other than might makes right. They lick the boots of the majority and the popular kids so that they're always on the side of the people with the gun. At least in their imagination. Just because they worship the people with the guns doesn't mean they won't eventually the target.

  • Brian||

    Good luck amending the constitution. That's how democracy works, ya know.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    ""Winning by cheating or defying democratic will might be defensible to keep the ruinous GOP out of power""

    You support someone who won a primary by having her team stack the deck. So cheating isn't a problem for you.

  • John||

    Make a claim when it results in your side losing. Until you do that, everyone will see you as the lying hack you are

  • John||

    Make a claim when it results in your side losing. Until you do that, everyone will see you as the lying hack you are

  • Quo Usque Tandem||

    Bullshit; you would be doing exactly what John describes. Uncle Fucker.

  • Rebel Scum||

    democratic will

    ...is irrelevant given that the US is a Republic. Try again.

  • Tony||

    I don't want to hear any of your bitching when a Democrat becomes president despite the will of the people.

    Except conveniently it never seems to work out that way.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    I'm pretty confident that none of us would bitch about it if a dem lost the popular and won the EC.

  • hello.||

    Don't you remember when Bill Clinton won on a plurality rather than a majority and Republicans were still desperately trying to undo the results of the election based on their shared delusions 2 years later?

  • Johnimo||

    Abolish the Electoral College, Tony. It'll be a nice project for you. Be dedicated ... get on it!

  • Brett Bellmore||

    "when you realize that Clinton actually, by far, won the most votes."

    She won the most votes. But I'd question the idea that she won them "by far". She only beat Trump by 2.1% in the popular vote, with neither of them reaching an actual majority. Even Johnson got more votes than her margin over Trump.

    And, yes, the EC did it's job. Trump carried the US minus California. All of Hillary's popular vote margin, and then some, came from California's lopsided result.

    So this boils down to the claim the Democrats should rule the entire country on the basis of having successfully turned California into a one party state. No thanks.

  • CE||

    Yeah, but you play by the rules of the game, and they were well established up front. Campaigning in California to raise more cash when that state was automatically secure in the EC, and avoiding Wisconsin and Michigan and Pennsylvania because they are full of deplorables is just bad strategy.

  • Mickey Rat||

    She was overwhelmingly popular in the most politicslly dysfunctional states, while winning the presidency actually requires winning in some of those states.where the people she has contempt for live in numbers. The best you say is that she was playing the wrong game despite having a husband who won initially with a plurality about 7% below 50%.

  • Agammamon||

    And it's basically irrelevant.

    The 'most qualified' candidate didn't run a campaign targeted towards how the President *is actually elected*. She completely ignored how the electoral college affects campaign strategy.

    This isn't to be taken as a for (or against) the college - only that I expect my Presidents to take the world as it is as a starting point , not how they think it should be.

    If you don't, you'll never be able to turn those 'oughts' into 'ises'.

    She fucked up.

  • Rebel Scum||

    The popular vote is not relevant.

    Clinton actually, by far, won the most votes.

    Remove the vote differences in CA and NY and tell me what you get.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    Just California is enough. She got 150% of her popular vote lead in that state.

  • ||

    Kinda makes you glad we don't live in a democracy, eh Tony? We really dodged a cankled bullet there, we may have had to get hit by an Orange car in the process.
    The electoral college saves Americans from the imbecility of people like Tony, it's not perfect but it's better than Tony.

  • Tony||

    Repeating bullshit 20 times doesn't make it not bullshit. The EC is obviously faulty as the only time it countered the will of the people it delivered a bumbling dry drunk torturer who started a war based on lies and Donald Fucking Trump. I don't care if you think he's a good president, he's not what the founders had in mind when they created the EC, I'm sure we can all agree.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    You're right, that's not what the founder had in mind when creating the EC.

    What they did have in mind is keeping the population centers (cities) from having a greater role in electing the president than people that lived in the country.

    It's not about preventing any moron from getting elected at all. They knew that would happen, so to hedge against that they gave most of the power to Congress. The idea of a limited executive branch was what they put into place for people like Trump.

    Do yourself a favor and actually study some American government. I don't mean to call you out, or to call you names, but your posts are self evident that you totally lack any understanding of the subject matter.

  • arbe59||

    "They knew that would happen, so to hedge against that they gave most of the power to Congress. The idea of a limited executive branch was what they put into place for people like Trump."

    ...and do democrats now have any regret for how willingly they gave power over to the executive branch while the savior was in office the previous 8 years?

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    ""and do democrats now have any regret for how willingly they gave power over to the executive branch while the savior was in office the previous 8 years?""

    I doubt they do, they should, but they reserve that power for the "right men". So now they are just upset that it's not one of them.

  • Azathoth!!||

    Tony, if you've got to toss the Constitution in the trash to get the Constitutional position you want you're on the wrong side.

  • OpenBordersLiberal-tarian||

    Even if this Cambridge Analytica story is indeed "horseshit" — I'm behind in my Youtube viewing, so I haven't watched enough John Oliver clips to form an opinion yet — it's totally unfair to blame Hillary Clinton for the result in 2016. As this piece admits, she won the popular vote by millions. Only tens of thousands of votes in swing states made Drumpf president under the indefensible, outdated Electoral College system. In a sane, fair system that counted everyone's vote equally, Hillary would have won despite all the obstacles in her way.

    And let's discuss those obstacles, shall we? The media's conduct in 2016 is the single most effective example to disprove the idea of "liberal bias" I've ever seen. They normalized Drumpf, excused his disgusting behavior, gave him free publicity — all while making a big deal of Clinton's e-mail non-story, and indulging in sexist speculation about whether she was healthy enough for the job. I'll never forget the overreaction to her mild fainting incident at the 9/11 memorial.

    (Also wrote a few sentences about #TrumpRussia but it exceeded the character limit.)

  • Rhywun||

    I haven't watched enough John Oliver clips to form an opinion yet

    LOL nice touch

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Yes, he's evolving.

  • Kivlor||

    Made me lol too

  • John||

    That was funny.

  • colorblindkid||

    Most of the media spent the entire election defending Hillary from the health "conspiracies". They ridiculed Fox and anybody who questioned it and called them sexist. Then she was caught on video fainting and belatedly admitted to having pneumonia.

    This wouldn't have been a big story if the press hadn't spent the previous 3 weeks declaring her to be perfectly healthy and calling anybody questioning her health a racist, sexist, right-wing, conspiracy theorist.

  • colorblindkid||

    And yes I know you're a troll (and a good one, usually). This is just a general comment about the whole health conspiracy thing.

    Just like with what Trump says.

    Most of what Trump says has at least a grain of truth to it (Take Sweden, for instance, or Haiti being a shithole). The press can't just criticize the comments for their merit. They have to categorically deny any part of it is true. They say 100% of it is wrong, and the exact opposite is true.

    They can't just admit Haiti is a third world hellhole for many but that's more reason to let them come here and make a better life. They wind up pulling a Conan O'Brien and taking pictures at a luxury resort proclaiming how awesome the country is. Then you have the NYT eventually reporting on the rising crime, gang violence, and sexual assault in Sweden, despite everybody categorically denying there was any problem at all in Sweden for months after Trump's comments.

    Same thing with the no-go zones, and a thousand other things.

  • Rhywun||

    They have to categorically deny any part of it is true. They say 100% of it is wrong, and the exact opposite is true.

    ^This. It is a symptom of TDS. Same thing with Nick above.

    "violent crime is at or near all-time highs" - this is actually true in some parts of America. Reason has put up dozens of posts about low crime and totally ignored the war zones that are showing zero sign of improvement in many inner cities.

    "massive voter fraud was the only reason he lost the popular vote" may or may not be delusional; but that didn't stop Reason from releasing dozens of posts claiming it can't possible be! without a shred of proof.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Team blue cities are certainly worse than the rest of the country, but they're not at all time highs either.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    "They can't just admit Haiti is a third world hellhole for many but that's more reason to let them come here and make a better life. "

    They can't say that, because the response is obvious: We admit people to the US so that the US will be improved, not so that their lives will be improved.

    If you admit people to the US on the basis of how much coming here will improve their lives, that suggests you should bring in the worst possible immigrants, not the best.

    That's not a debate the media want to have happen.

  • colorblindkid||

    And there is also a solid argument that taking all of the best and brightest from these countries only hurts the people in those countries. It's gotten so bad that we can't even say "we can't take in half of India" without being accused of being anti-immigrant.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    Oh, I'm sure it does hurt those countries, though the remittances take a lot of the sting away.

    But is the policy of the US government supposed to be crafted to benefit everybody outside the country, or everybody inside the country? That's a debate they're desperate to avoid.

  • colorblindkid||

    I was watching a Netflix food documentary and the host was pretty upset when he talked to Vietnamese people in Houston, who were actually harassed by the KKK when they came to America, but weren't resentful about it and said it's just part of moving to a new country. They eventually became accepted because they just kept on working and being friendly to others and giving people food, and they love America. The Vietnamese American also said that they had to go through a vetting process when fleeing Vietnam as refugees and they had to work for years in order to earn citizenship, was worried about Muslim terrorism, and was generally opposed to illegal immigration.

  • Gaear Grimsrud||

    "They can't say that, because the response is obvious: We admit people to the US so that the US will be improved, not so that their lives will be improved.."

    Lady Liberty disagrees:
    "Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

    My grandparents didn't show up with aristocratic titles, college degrees or wads of cash. They were wretched refuse faced with tyranny and starvation. They brought a desire to improve their lives and the willingness to work, just like the vast majority of immigrants today. And by their labor they did improve "our lives", mine at least. So fuck off slaver.

  • WoodChipperBob||

    "Lady Liberty disagrees"

    Tell me again how it was determined that Emma Lazarus's poem was the official immigration policy of the US.

  • Nige||

    If the media are required to sift through his lies to find some splinter of truth to highlight then fuck off that's pure Pravda. Your guy requires special treatment because he lies or straight up gets everything wrong but you're whining because something he says may or may not overlap with something that might be true? Clinton lost mostly because she was competing against this level of immoral entitled horseshit right here.

  • Tony||

    Have you paid attention to Trump at all? You ought to, what with your ridiculous support of him.

    Hillary is still kicking, and she's not insane or senile like POTUS.

  • Finrod||

    "she's not insane or senile"

    Citation Needed.

  • Nardz||

    "Hillary is still kicking, and she's not insane or senile like POTUS."

    That's some damn fine satire!

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    ""Hillary is still kicking""

    By this I think he means how her body moves when she can't navigate stairs.

  • Palatki||

    Sometimes you will encounter a wounded insect on the ground, laying on its back, and one of its six legs is kind of kicking out spasmodically. Is that what you mean by 'still kicking', Tony?

  • AlmightyJB||

    Why does Reason hate women!

  • NYLawyer||

    This article is incorrect in the way it characterizes Michigan. Trump's unexpected victories in Wisconsin and Michigan meant Trump did not need to win Pennsylvania -- but because he won Pennsylvania, he would have won the electoral vote even without Michigan.

  • colorblindkid||

    Yeah I noticed that error, too. Also, in a true two-person national popular vote, I think Trump still would have won, for four reasons:

    1. Hillary's popular vote margin was so big because she was an idiot and spent tens of millions of dollars specifically to run up the popular vote in dark blue states and cities, and it worked. She got those votes. Donald Trump ignored areas he wasn't going to win. Trump would have ran a completely different campaign.

    2. Democrats in Texas convinced themselves that it was in play so they had a pretty good turnout for Dems in a red state. California Republicans, on the other hand, had almost no reason to go to the polls, since the Senate race was between two Democrats, as were many other races, due to their new primary rules. Half the popular vote gap can be explained by California alone.

    (cont.)

  • colorblindkid||

    3. Jill Stein got 1.5 million votes. Gary Johnson got 4.5 million votes. Take them out of the election, and I'm pretty sure there would have been a net gain of at least a million for Trump (although most Stein/Trump voters would have stayed home, as I probably would have). It's hilarious and irritating to watch media figures still blame the election on Stein, completely ignoring that Gary got 3X as many votes, most of whom I'm willing to be were Republican-leaning.

    4. In the House Election, which is far more similar to a national popular vote election than the presidential election is, Republicans got 1.5 million votes than Democrats, and a total of 49.1%, higher than Hillary's 48.2% in the popular vote. I've yet to see any pundit acknowledge or even explain this disparity.

    The national popular vote is irrelevant, and tells us nothing.

  • WoodChipperBob||

    3a. Evan McMullin even got a half a percent of the vote. And every single one of his voters was a disaffected Republican, who, in a two-person national popular vote would have either stayed home or held their noses and voted for Trump.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    "Half the popular vote gap can be explained by California alone."

    I suggest you run your numbers again.

    Trump: 62,984,825
    Clinton: 65,853,516
    Difference: 2,868,691

    In California:
    Trump: 4,483,810
    Clinton: 8,753,788
    Difference: 4,269,978

    It wasn't half the popular vote gap. It was one and a half times the popular vote gap.

  • colorblindkid||

    I'm saying that if there was a true popular vote election, then there would have been more votes for Trump in California. He still would have lost by millions, just by significantly less, possibly 1.5 million votes, half the gap.

    If we had a true two-person popular vote election, millions more would have voted for Trump in blue states. There would also be Democrats who would have come out in red states, but not nearly as many.

    The most important signal of this is the House elections.

  • John||

    That is a good point. California made it so that a Republican couldn't even run on the final ballot for Senate. There was no reason for California Republicans to turn out and they didn't. No way in hell does Hillary get that much of a popular vote advantage if the election were by popular vote.

  • BYODB||

    This is why morons like Tony want to point to a metric that no one was using to decide the winner. That way, they can point to the one area where Hillary did well and pretend it matters, when in reality if that was how the election was decided there is no way of telling what might have happened because everyone would have behaved according to a rule set that didn't exist at the time.

    I'm sure it's a shitty salve for the burn America gave them, but it's all they've got. They insist that it's not their policies or candidates, but rather a problem with the electorate, so that they aren't forced to learn any lessons for the future of the Democrat party. Just keep on truckin' and doing the same shit, even though the evidence says that won't work. That's the Democrat mantra.

  • John||

    The inability to see the 2016 election as it is is just an expression of people's refusal to admit that the people who voted for him should have a say in government. They were supposed to shut up and go along. They didn't. Admitting the truth about the election requires making peace with that and making some effort at compromise. You can't do that if you think the people who voted for Trump have no right to have any say in their government or any of their interests protected or even respected as legitimate. None of these people hated Trump before he ran for President. They hate him now not because he has changed. They hate him because they hate his supporters

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    After all that has happened in terms of data breaches, revelations of various companies selling personal data, etc., how can anybody believe that what they put into social media (or anywhere else on the internet) is "private"?

    I've held the view for a long time that the internet is no more private than the bathroom wall at a bus station. This makes all the young kids roll their eyes but it seems to me they need to stop rolling their eyes and use them instead.

    And git off mah lawn!

  • John||

    Obama and his campaign people bragged about how Facebook was an arm of their campaigns in 08 and 12. When it was something only Democrats were smart enough to do, it was great. Now that Republicans have done it, it is a threat to democracy.

    It is all bullshit. Obama didn't win because of it and neither did Trump

  • Joe_JP||

    The "an arm" sounds a bit exaggerated and even in that respect even someone citing it as a "both sides do it" only cited the second year. The importance of Facebook as early as 2008 is unclear but shrugs. Also, one of the people cited in the coverage actually voiced concern about how such data could be used. The concern about data in that respect has not been cited as a one side deal.

    More importantly, the problem is not only the use of the data, but how the operators here did things [including connections with Russia, Wikileaks etc.], raising questions. And, in particular, they -- unlike Obama -- broke Facebook rules (ultimately they were blocked from Facebook) in saying how they would use the data.

    Finally, it is not that "Trump won" because of this -- a few people might be making such a broad claim but people on all sides make exaggerated claims -- but that this is a serious part of the overall puzzle. To the extent that such actors can be used by various candidates, that's fine -- big picture this is not just about one candidate.

  • John||

    The media director for the Obama 12 campaign disagrees with you.

    A former media director for the Obama campaign said Facebook allowed them to access the personal data of its users in 2011 because the social media giant was "on our side."

    "They came to office in the days following election recruiting & were very candid that they allowed us to do things they wouldn't have allowed someone else to do because they were on our side," Carol Davidsen, director of data integration and media analytics for Obama for America, wrote Sunday on Twitter.

    Davidsen said she and her team were able to gather massive amounts of personal information from Facebook users, as well as their friends.

    "Facebook was surprised we were able to suck out the whole social graph, but they didn't stop us once they realized that was what we were doing," she said on Twitter.

    http://nypost.com/2018/03/20/o.....-our-side/

    If it wasn't a problem then, it is not a problem now. And if you think it was and didn't say anything, you better have a pretty good explanation why you didn't other than "its okay when my guy does it".

  • Joe_JP||

    How does that disagree with various things I said?

    For instance, your very source (a conservative leaning local paper in my area) said:

    "But while Facebook and its users gave permission to the Obama campaign to vacuum up the data, Cambridge may have harvested the information illegally by saying it would be used for an academic study."

    So, maybe not the same thing. It is not merely the use of data but HOW as well as some connections (such as with Russia) that are being flagged in the reporting now.

    My own comment alluded to someone in his campaign talking about using data generally. The person I had in mind also said they in hindsight are wary about how such data could be used. One can also find the policy problematic even if an Obama staff member thinks it is fine. I would not think all here take what they say as gospel.

  • John||

    Obama vacuumed up all the data he could from Facebook. Either that is a problem or it isn't. If it isn't, then it is not a problem when Trump did the same thing. It is really that simple.

  • Nardz||

    "Russia, Russia, Russia!"

    What a (useful?) idiot.

  • Mickey Rat||

    Just as gerrymandering has only become a crisis of democracy since the GOP has gained control of most state legislatures.

  • Rich||

    the internet is no more private than the bathroom wall at a bus station.

    Oh, the bathroom wall is *much* more private.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    Yeah, a lot fewer people ride the bus than use facecrack.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    Shhh. Zuckerberg might get the idea to start automatically harvesting "for a good time call" phone numbers on bathroom stalls. And then we won't even be able to take a piss without worrying about the cameras.

  • Agammamon||

    Yeah, I drive a Google Street view van nowadays. Way better than my last job filming gas station restroom stalls for Facebook's Jennyview.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Which is why those tech savvy millenials are more likely to get phished than grandma.

  • Incomprehensible Bitching||

    Yeah, but propaganda works or it wouldn't exist, so it's really up to you to prove the Russians didn't steal the presidency.

    Hats not a lot of votes in those swing states.

    Therefore, it must be that the Russians stole our democracy. QED.

    Why do you love the Red Menace, comrade?

  • John||

    The point of proefanda isn't to convince anyone. It is to give people who already believe a rationalization for believing.

  • Magnitogorsk||

    Why not both?

  • Josh The Radio Dude||

    Really, Nick? That's a joke. I have seen more liberals and leftists -- in Hollywood, in Washington, and in my own life -- mocking and belittling Clinton for her incompetence than I've seen *anyone* trying to defend her lately. Pretty much EVERYONE is on the same page here. The only people still making noise about her are the nutjob Republicans.

  • John||

    Yeah, no one but nutjob Republicans believe Trump stole the election because of the evil Russkies. What color is the sky in your universe?

  • Brian||

  • Sevo||

    "The only people still making noise about her are the nutjob Republicans."

    Are you new here? Do you see Tony, upthread?

  • Aloysious||

    The only people still making noise about her are the nutjob Republicans

    There are Democrats on this very board making noise about HC.

  • Bacon-Magic glib reasonoid||

    We got a new troll contestant here...he may even believe his own bullshit.

  • CE||

    And Hillary herself.

  • Rhywun||

    the least-credible candidate ever in American history

    To be sure.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    When can we as a country admit that the "most-qualified candidate in history" lost the 2016 election and get on with living our lives?

    For progressives whose lives revolve around politics, never. For normal people, we moved on with our lives ~ 5 seconds after the election was called for Trump on November 8th, 2016

  • Joe_JP||

    Seems to me that a range of people -- not just "progressives" -- are concerned about Trump these days & wish we could have a better person in charge. Would be logical since he holds a rather important job, doing things that affect average people & elections matter in a republican democracy like ours. Finally, if one actually support Trump strongly, they would be actively concerned too. But, you are a "cynical asshole" singing out progressives, shrugs.

  • sarcasmic||

    OT Eagles of Death Metal covering Duran Duran

    They aren't death metal.

  • Agammamon||

    So meta.

  • TxJack 112||

    Hillary did not spend time in the Midwest because she has nothing but contempt for all of us living there. She made that fact crystal clear in her India speech.

  • Eidde||

    "(she won the popular vote by about 3 million)"

    She got a plurality of the popular vote.

    Nobody won the popular vote.

    Plus the popular vote is a meaningless concept. It's like saying the defeated party in a parliamentary election got a majority of the popular vote. It's irrelevant.

  • Libertymike||

    Kudos on your brilliant channeling of AC last night.

    BTW, does the flea still have its erection?

  • Eidde||

    Again, I stole that from Blanche Knott or some other compiler of jokes. But thank you.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    ""Nobody won the popular vote."'

    You can't win a contest that doesn't exist.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    What I find funny about blaming the EC for the lost is how disconnected the contestant must be to make that claim. Hillary, and everyone who's had a civics class knows the rules of the contest.

    In short, Hillary is the kind of person who would sign up for a contest, then blame the rules for her loss when she knew damn well that rule was in place when she entered the contest.

  • Eidde||

    What would Americans think of a has-been Indian politician going to the U. S. and telling an American audience that the people who voted for him were awesome and the people who voted for the winning candidate sucked, and he should be India's leader?

  • Libertymike||

    Some, no doubt, would tell him, "go cry a river in your curry."

  • John||

    If Nick thinks Trump was the "least credible candidate in history", maybe that says everything about what Nick considers credible and nothing about Trump. Trump has been President for a year and the economy is doing well, the government is still running, we are not in any new wars and the dark night of fascism seems not to have fallen. Just what do Nick and the rest think Trump is going to do? Invade Iraq on the assumption that all that will need to be done is install a US toady in place of Saddam? Try to turn Afghanistan into a western democracy? Decide the solution to Islamic terrorism is to make the Middle East Democratic whether it wants it or not? Bomb Libya for humanitarian reasons and leave what was the richest nation in Africa a Jihadist run hell hole whose economy now consists of terrorism, refugee smuggling, and slave trading? Give Iran $1.7 billion dollars in untraceable cash in return for a meaningless promise not to build nuclear weapons? Assume the power and authority to regulate the banks only to stand by and do nothing as the real estate bubble created the greatest financial collapse in US history and then steal trillions from the taxpayers to bail them out? Make a deal with China that is against US interests so that his idiot son can make billions in a nuclear deal with them the way Biden and Kerry did?

  • John||

    Maybe "credible" is just another word for "craven and stupid"? Perhaps all of the credible people Nick so loves to consider his peers are really morons whose only skills are rationalizing their own self-interest and Utopian fantasies?

  • sarcasmic||

    Dude, check out that song I posted up there. I really think you'll dig the band. No flashy drums, groovy guitar.

  • John||

    Will do. Thanks.

  • Quo Usque Tandem||

    And that would be the T&P hit, right?

  • sarcasmic||

  • Rhywun||

    "Credible" here is nothing more or less than "seemly".

  • Rhywun||

    "Credible" here is nothing more or less than "seemly".

  • John||

    Pretty much. It is always about manners with Trump. He breaks the rules of courtly manners and people like Nick just can't handle that. The fact that manners and seemliness are constantly used by the left to keep people from speaking truths they don't like or advocating real change never seems to matter to Nick, even though Libertarian ideas are harmed as much as any by this.

  • WoodChipperBob||

    Credibility as a candidate has nothing to do with what he does as President or how he does it.

    Trump was the "least credible candidate in history" because he had nothing on his resume that anyone would look at and say, "Yeah, this is a person who would run for President".

  • Flinch||

    Nick may or may not be aware of this, but the greater LA area is capable of minting 300k illegal votes in any cyle without blinking [or even trying hard]. That's just one county, so the national picture is likely 10x that amount, factoring in big city politics. I'm sure he must have heard of motor-voter, and connected the dots between it and the DMV now being referred to as the Department of Mexican Voting. Interesting piece, but the few holes in it that distract from what's worth exploring. The idea that Hillary is into gaslighting the public has lots to back it up, going all the way back to her "pretty in pink" press conference, where she deflected to an appartion that was unbelieveable: the "vast right wing conspiracy". I can't buy that - the GOP has been stuck on stupid ever since Nixon took the white house, and Ken Starr didn't do much more than eat a ham sandwich, while stir frying a sum of cash from the treasury as he ran out the clock in a masterful deflection allowing congress to not do its job, while securing Bill's pension and legacy.

  • Kivlor||

    Michigan was going to have to declare most of Detroit's vote invalid due to massive discrepancies found in the recount, until it was called off.

    The level of cheating by the Dems is unbelievable to most people.

  • Earth Skeptic||

    I really do not care who might be gaslighting, and how they do it. I am much more concerned that people (except us, of course) might be so susceptible to manipulation that any belief in broad-participation democracy as a means to provide optimum leadership is delusional.

    And I am concerned in a different way that others who recognize the same susceptibility, at least in private, seek first to "protect" the people from wrong information--not that they would replace that with their own self-serving propaganda.

  • Ken Shultz||

    "Clinton and her allies in the media have worked overtime to provide increasingly fanciful explanations for her failure to beat the least-credible candidate ever in American history. Sometimes the apologias are conscious, sometimes not, but nobody really wants to accept what happened . . . . The result is a non-stop barrage of stories, some more credible than others, that Trump's win was the result of some sort of sinister machination that has undermined our democracy.

    If Gillespie was ever lost in the bubble, he ain't no more!

    We should take this one step further. If and when the Democrats take the House in November, Pelosi will probably be ejected from the Speaker's chair by her own party if she doesn't impeach Trump. And yet Trump, knowing this, is supposed to continue to subject himself to Mueller's ongoing witch hunt?

    I don't know how he restrains himself. I guess Trump is supposed to think that it would be foolish for him to fire Mueller for fear that Democrats and establishment Republicans will hate him for it--but how much worse can that get? Does anybody really believe they're holding back now?

    Ultimately, the elitists can't accept the truth--because they're the ones to blame for Trump's victory and they can't stop themselves from being the elitists they are. What's the point of being in power if you can't be contemptuous of and lord over all those deplorables in white, blue collar, middle America?

  • John||

    If the Democrats win the House and spend the entire two years before 2020 trying to impeach Trump, I can't see it ending well for them in 2020. It didn't work for the Republicans with Clinton. And Clinton actually did do something in office that people found objectionable. What are the Democrats going to impeach Trump for? Being associated with people who spoke with the Russians before the election? Can you imagine a trial in the Senate on the collusion bullshit? It would make the Democrats look like loons out of Kafka. Yet, if they do retake the House and don't impeach Trump, there entire batshit crazy base of people like Tony will consider them traitors.

    I would rather the Republicans keep the House. But if they don't, I can't see that working out too well for the Democrats.

  • Ken Shultz||

    When they impeach Trump, he will come out the other side looking like a martyr to swing voters in swing states, but like I said, I don't think Pelosi will have a choice. She's not about to put the good of the party in 2020 above keeping her own ass in the Speaker's chair.

    In the Senate, it'll be a shit show.

    Trump will be at the mercy, to some extent, of Cruz, Paul, Rubio, and others he steamrolled in the primaries back in 2016, but they, in turn, will be at the mercy of Trump voters who would be seriously pissed off if they threw him under the bus. If they throw him under the bus, those voters will all flock to Pence.

    I bet they'd rather challenge Trump in 2020 than Pence--after they voted to convict Trump and remove him from the White House.

    In the meantime, I understand all the constitutional, principled arguments about why I don't want to see Trump fire Mueller. From a purely pragmatic, strategic, political perspective, however, it keeps looking more like Trump has little to lose for firing Mueller. Trump is likely to face impeachment anyway, and I doubt he'd lose much support out there in swing states for bringing down the hatchet.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Unless something new and real happens there is no way trump is convicted in the senate.

  • John||

    If the Senate removed Trump from office over this bullshit, it would be the end of the Republican party and create the real possibility of a civil war. People would go insane over it. I can't imagine more than a few turncoats being dumb enough to do that. And they would have to get to 66 votes.

    The entire thing would be a farce that would cause the country to see those behind it as another example of why Washington sucks so bad. And as you say would make Trump into a martyr in many ways.

    The Democrats' best hope for beating Trump in 2020 is to not take the House. Taking the House will just give the country a reminder of how crazy and stupid their base is.

  • John||

    One other factor is that if the Democrats do take the House it will be because they ran candidates in districts Trump won claiming to be sane centrists. So, what do those guys do when it comes time to vote on the articles of Impeachment for Trump? Vote with the party and they likely are dead candidates walking come 2020. Voting to impeach Trump will become like voting for Obamacare in many of those districts. But if they don't vote to impeach Trump, their own base will turn on them and likely primary them. They are screwed either way.

  • Ken Shultz||

    I don't think the Democrats need to do particularly well in swing states to take the House.

    I'd like to think we avoid the whole shit show by the Republicans keeping the House, but that's highly unlikely. It's more unlikely than Trump winning--since there's no electoral college in the House. It's just straight population and popularity.

    We're going to the dentist, and he's gonna use his drill.

  • John||

    To retake the House, the Democrats need to win a ton of districts that went for Trump in 2016. Trump won a pretty good majority of House districts.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Like they just did in PA?

  • John||

    Yes Skippy. That is exactly what I am talking about. Lamm ran as a centrist. How does Lamm vote on the Impeachment Articles? I guarantee you a yes vote won't be popular in his district.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Neither was Barrycare. Didn't stop it.

  • John||

    For sure. And they ended up losing all of those seats as a result. So when Lamm votes for impeachment, he is toast in 2020. And that is my point.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Bad for lamb, worse for us.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Just read any spit-flecked reasoning from tony here for the charges. Trump committed the only real crime: he got in their way.

  • Agnes||

    Let me tell ya, I know a lot of robot meme sharing, politically and emotionally charged southern republicans...and they weren't going to vote for Clinton even if hell froze over. And I also know a lot of white women; they didn't vote for her because she's a lying cunt that doesn't relate to women and they were smart enough to not be brainwashed by 'idea' that Hillary Clinton was a woman for women.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    My dad and stepmom have been hardcore Democrats their entire lives, and they both viscerally could not stand Hillary. They sat the 2016 election out.

  • Joe_JP||

    I have not read Hillary Clinton's book though have heard mention of her saying that she could have done certain things differently. But, it is not somehow a creation of the modern day for someone who lost -- especially if it was painful in various ways (e.g., a blown call helped but in no way is the only reason) -- to find ways to avoid blame.

    It is tedious to hear talk of Clinton "gaslighting" us in this fashion & anyway even if it's true, a above it all place like Reason should be telling us "both sides do it" here -- Trump still can be trying to drive Ingrid Bergman crazy so she can later be a missionary to China or something (to cite another one of her films).

    There is going to be some exaggeration here but it's fine to examine the role of this firm in the big picture on how Trump's message was promoted. If you like, do it to show how skillful he is as a political figure. And, there are some troubling details involved here - breaking Facebook rules, some dubious connections with foreigners etc. Again, ala Gore back in the day etc., you can say "both sides do it," if you want, but only one side is in power now, so you know, sort of aren't on equal footing.

    I myself mostly am ignoring Hillary Clinton now and moving on.

  • John||

    It is not a crime to talk to the Russians. What is "troubling" about it, if, as you admit, it didn't change the result of the election? Stop being opaque. What do you think Trump did or could have done that is so "troubling". Explain that and why you think it happened or forget it. Stop saying things are "troubling" without explaining why.

  • Joe_JP||

    "It is not a crime to talk to the Russians."

    Okay? Something doesn't have to be a "crime" to be a problem & mere "talking" isn't the only thing at issue.

    Something also can be "troubling" without changing the result. If umpires blow a lot of calls but the team wins 8-2, we can be troubled by it. Even more so if the game was much closer. I'll just grant it didn't change the result for sake of argument here since it simply isn't necessary for there to be concerns.

    "And, there are some troubling details involved here - breaking Facebook rules, some dubious connections with foreigners etc." I'm not sure what your issue is there. I wasn't specifically talking about Trump & I gave an idea of what I specifically meant. And, yes, sometimes I will say general things, people do that too.

  • John||

    Why is it troubling? Presidential candidates and their staffs talk to foreign governments all of the time. Obama went around Europe in 2008 telling one world leader after another to ignore the sitting President and be ready for what he was going to do once elected. That doesn't trouble me at all. It is a smart thing for a candidate who plans on winning to do. You say it is "troubling" but you admit it isn't a crime and can't really explain why it is troubling other than you say it is.

    My problem is that you seem to not have a point. You really don't know what the problem is and can't explain it but can't admit that there isn't one.

  • Joe_JP||

    I already quoted the sentence where I used "troubling," it provided specifics, and it was in regarding to CA, not Trump particularly. If you want to focus on Trump, again, it is not merely talking with the Russians that is cited as the problem. And, even on that level, RUSSIA is a specific concern as compared to if Trump was involved with some random country in Western Europe.

    I have a point, but you want to make another one. Be my guest.

  • John||

    You haven't listed anything. Again, what is Trump supposed to have done? You can't seem to explain that. You just list the same benign allegations over and over again. Saying they are "troubling" doesn't make them so.

  • Nardz||

    So who killed Seth Rich?

    Or is that not troubling?

  • Mark22||

    If you like, do it to show how skillful he is as a political figure.

    People who voted for Trump did so out of disgust for Hillary Clinton and the Republican candidates, not because Trump had any political skills. The man can hardly put together a coherent sentence, FFS.

    you can say "both sides do it," if you want, but only one side is in power now, so you know, sort of aren't on equal footing

    You make it sound like Hillary's loss needs any special explanation. Hillary lost to Obama, Hillary lost to Sanders, and Hillary lost to Trump. Hillary is such a lying, vain, offensive, corrupt fraud that lifelong Democrats like myself left the Democratic party over her. Hillary creeps people out on TV, and she is a grating and unpleasant presence in person. And on top of that, she ran a horrible campaign. And that incompetent harpy actually believed she was entitled to the presidency.

  • John||

    The man can hardly put together a coherent sentence, FFS.

    that is just not true. If you don't believe me, go back and watch him at the Florida town hall meeting that occurred after the shooting. He was brilliant in that. And that is just one example. No one says you have to agree with Trump. But the idea that he is some idiot who can't make a good speech or talking intelligently in public is just not true.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    He really doesn't talk very goodly. Believe me.

  • John||

    My lying eyes and ears tell me differently. Go to the tape and judge for yourself.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    That's exactly why I wrote what I wrote. He's had a couple few decent speeches and a nearly uncountable number of bad ones.

  • Mark22||

    that is just not true

    You need to look up "hyperbole".

    No one says you have to agree with Trump. But the idea that he is some idiot who can't make a good speech or talking intelligently in public is just not true.

    Actually, it's the other way around: I think Trump's policies are pretty decent and the guy is reasonably smart, but his speeches and general comportment are lousy. That shouldn't come as a surprise: the man grew up rich and never had to be nice to anyone in his life.

    I abstained from voting this time, but that is also the general view that all the Trump voters I know have of him. Your view is an outlier.

  • Joe_JP||

    I am no fan of the guy, but he has some skills. Give the devil his due and all that.

    His stream of consciousness way of speaking, for example, apparently appeals to some people. The word salad approach also can be pretty useful in certain contexts. B.S. generally too.

    No need for overkill here -- Hillary Clinton beat Sanders. The race vs. Obama, a pretty good politician in various ways, in 2008 was rather close. She won the popular vote and lost to Trump in the key three states by a hair. But, I'm not trying here to say there is some complicated reason she lost the election at any rate.

    The basic point is that people who lose quite often -- this isn't novel or a 21st Century thing -- find reason to justify it, how it wasn't really there fault -- to the degree she is doing this. I find that aspect of the original discussion tedious.

  • Mark22||

    His stream of consciousness way of speaking, for example, apparently appeals to some people

    Trump's speaking style signals that he isn't a professional politician because he lacks the rhetorical skills that come with that position.

    But, I'm not trying here to say there is some complicated reason she lost the election at any rate.

    The reason isn't complicated at all: Hillary was a lousy candidate who only got nominated because of her and her husband's political influence. Republicans could easily have nominated someone who beat Clinton, and Democrats could easily have nominated someone who beat Trump; the 2016 election was a race to the political bottom.

    Having said that, I actually think Trump ended up being a better choice than an establishment Republican party candidate.

  • ||

    I must ask, what honestly do you see in the Democratic party?

  • CE||

    Clinton lost because the Democrats spent too much time campaigning to the liberal fringe and not enough time campaigning to the middle class workers they used to represent, and because Clinton herself spent too much time campaigning in locked-up California for cash instead of in toss-up Great Lakes states for votes.

  • John||

    Maybe, but that assumes her campaigning in those places would have helped. I don't think Hillary's campaign was as dumb as they are being portrayed. I think they kept her out of those states and in deep blue states because they understood just how off-putting she was. They didn't send her to the Great Lakes because they rightly concluded that doing so would hurt her chances. The last thing they wanted was to give voters in those states a chance to see Hillary in person where the partisan media couldn't airbrush over how awful she was.

  • CE||

    Yeah, I hadn't considered that it was intentional and spending more time there might have been a net negative.
    The only thing I noticed for sure in the last few months of the campaign was that whenever Clinton campaigned with Warren, her poll numbers went down.

  • Butler T. Reynolds||

    Good point.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Maybe, but that assumes her campaigning in those places would have helped. I don't think Hillary's campaign was as dumb as they are being portrayed. I think they kept her out of those states and in deep blue states because they understood just how off-putting she was.

    I disagree. The Midwest state results were extremely close, and one thing that marked Obama's presidential runs is that he took the time to visit everywhere, not just try to run up the score in Dem strongholds. He knew that he had little chance of winning states like Montana, Wyoming, or the Dakotas--but he still took the time to go there and make his presence felt, because he knew that showing engagement would broaden his overall support. Granted, Obama's a lot more charismatic and a better speaker than Hillary, but recall that Bill was practically begging her and her team to go to the Rust Belt and shore up that support. Despite the fact that the man, unlike his idiot wife, was 2-for-2 in Presidential election campaigns, her team shunted him to the sideline and he spent months pathetically running a one-man campaign team there.

    It's not that the team considered her off-putting, it was because they simply assumed the turnout would be the same in those states as it had been the previous 30 years, and it bit them in the ass.

  • Mark22||

    In a smart piece published earlier this week, National Review's Michael Brendan Dougherty argues that the liberal-leaning solons of Silicon Valley and folks in the media are in the middle of creating a moral panic

    In fact, those "liberal-leaning solons of Silicon Valley" did everything they could to support Clinton, including providing big data analysts and data to the Clinton campaign. For example,

    "[Eric Schmidt is] ready to fund, advise recruit talent, etc. He was more deferential on structure than I expected. Wasn't pushing to run through one of his existing firms. Clearly wants to be head outside advisor, but didn't seem like he wanted to push others out. Clearly wants to get going. He's still in DC tomorrow and would like to meet with you if you are in DC in the afternoon. I think it's worth doing."

    At the time, it seemed impossible for Trump to win against this kind of brainpower. As it turns out, Trump won despite Silicon Valley's massive resources, chokehold on online communications and censorship, massive in-kind donations, and massive bias in favor of Hillary. I guess progressive, rational, science-based methods of propaganda don't work as well as progressive believe.

  • Butler T. Reynolds||

    For people who claim to f-ing love science, progressives are really f-ing bad at math. Hillary should have easily held Trump's empty head in her hand, Kathy Griffin style, but instead she just blew it. I despise Trump, but it was fun watching an arrogant a-hole like Hillary get her butt kicked.

  • ejhickey||

    My wife makes me change the channel if Clinton appears on TV or if there is a story about Clinton. According to Hillary I thought I was the one who controlled the political conversation in our house. How can I make my wife listen me the way Hillary says she is supposed to?

  • colorblindkid||

    She has been brainwashed by you into hating Hillary. All women are easily brainwashed and manipulated by their husbands.

  • NoVaNick||

    I only know a few women who actually like Hillary, even though probably 99% of the women I know voted for her.

  • Rat on a train||

    Show some empathy. How would you feel if you lost twice (2008 and 2016) even though you received more votes both times?

  • ||

    It means she's a moron who is incapable of understanding how the election is won, or another way, a loser.

  • Rat on a train||

    A normal person would have realized the vote total isn't what matters after the first time.

  • NoVaNick||

    Not to add to the gaslighting, but the question needs to be asked: Did Hillary INTENTIONALLY blow the 2016 election? I know many progs who complained that BO was too much of a nice guy, too pro-business, and wasn't delivering for them, so what better way to stir up the base and ensure a dem majority than to allow the biggest fucking asshole in the western hemisphere to become POTUS?

  • Brett Bellmore||

    Nope, too risky a strategy for her. For all she knew, Trump would carry through on that threat to end her immunity, and have the DoJ go after her for her crimes.

  • NoVaNick||

    For all she knew, Trump would carry through on that threat to end her immunity, and have the DoJ go after her for her crimes.

    Well he hasn't yet, has he? Also, he is/was friends with the Clintons. I don't think she ever took such threats, or anything El Trumpo said, seriously.

  • WoodChipperBob||

    It's not actually that risky for her. Look at the weak "punishment" Petraeus got for *intentionally* compromising classified information. I don't think it's such a risky strategy to subject oneself to a couple years of probation and a fine which (for her) is a couple speaking engagements.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    ""Did Hillary INTENTIONALLY blow the 2016 election?"'

    Hillary blows nothing. That's why Monica was around.

  • Nardz||

    These propagandists are clever.
    Even in defeat, they gain ground.
    For example, a large majority believes Russia is hostile and "hacked" our elections - despite murdered DNC staffer Seth Rich, "evidence" that consists merely of accusations of our intel agencies (whose purpose and history is marked by misinformation) repeated endlessly by ALL corporate media and talking heads, and burying of WikiLeaks Vault 7 (specifying behavior that reveals alphabet agencies focused extensively on the kinds of interference and framing blamed on Russia) - while China ignored, even though it has a recent history of vast IP theft, hacked US govt 3 years ago and stole 20m IDs, extensive spy network, and gave billions to former admin(s).

  • Nardz||

    The narrative supported here, though Nick ostensibly highlights defeat, is that Hillary lost - therefore, not Trump won.
    As if the Patriots lost, not the Eagles won.
    You see, if only the statists/progressives/establishment hadn't screwed up, they'd have successfully continued on their Long March through history.
    Make no mistake: the "Hillary lost, Trump didn't win" narrative is not directed at Trump - it's directed at us, at The People, at individualism and Libertarians.
    Hillary blames everybody for Trump and establishment blames Hillary for Trump, meanwhile we capitulate to their narrative and deny that Trump won.
    "You didn't [elect] that." Nope, you don't really have a say. Only the corporatocracy has agency.
    Even in defeat, the Long March Progresses.

  • Longtobefree||

    "When can we as a country admit that the "most-qualified candidate in history" lost the 2016 election"

    I don't know, Nick. A huge chunk of "we as a country" was over the election on November 9th 2016.
    The qualifications are; one, be over 35 years of age, and two, be a citizen of the United States.
    Seems to me there is no way to be more or less qualified, let alone most qualified; it is not a relative scale. It is a binary; you are qualified, or you are not qualified.
    She was qualified, and lost. He was qualified, and won.
    Maybe they asked the wrong candidates "will you accept the results of the election?"

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    ""Maybe they asked the wrong candidates "will you accept the results of the election?"""

    Trump answered honestly. Hillary made a big deal out of so we can say her answer would have been yes, and should would have been lying.

  • John B. Egan||

    Must be a real slow news day.... Hilary is not running again. Nobody cares about her anymore, and Reason makes excuses for the daily lies, misdirections, and general BS from dirty, con-artist and liar Trump? Really?

  • SimonP||

    I get the impression that Nick is not the brightest bulb in Reason's line-up.

  • gphx||

    Have a nice trip, Hillary. See you next fall.

  • SimonP||

    These kinds of hot takes always seem to have a bizarrely narrow worldview. Like it wasn't already pretty clear how Russia engaged in hybrid warfare in its near abroad? Were we not able to watch what they did in Georgia, Crimea, eastern Ukraine? Everything gets jumbled in the analysis, crucial details subtly dropped. So, the Russian hacking of the DNC is irrelevant? The coordination of hacked e-mails? How are you going to assess CA's role accurately in all of this, if you don't see how their methods fit hand-in-glove with the raw material the Russians served up to Wikileaks and, one increasingly can surmise, Trump himself? How are you going to evaluate their impact appropriately, without seeing how exactly these kinds of campaigns sowed division in Georgia and Crimea, in order to lay the foundation for Russian occupation?

    No, Hillary is not gaslighting us. But what's crazy are pieces like this, almost as hysterical as they are obstinately ignorant, trying desperately to explain why there's no "there" there even as Mueller drips out the indictments, and the narrow peninsula of credibility you're clinging onto sinks slowly into the sea. Maybe, instead of putting this kind of nonsense out on the internet under your name, where it will forever be yours to own, you wait a few months and see where we end up?

  • Nardz||

    Seth Rich
    WikiLeaks
    Vault 7
    Craig Murray

    What's your last name SimonP? I assume you're willing to put your name to the idiotic, warmongering statements you're making?

    Go fuck Maidan McCain

  • SimonP||

    Formulate an actual argument, and maybe I'll care enough to tell you my last name, putz.

  • geo||

    Haiku:
    Hillary
    White
    Married
    Woman

  • Robert Crim||

    Hillary lost because she is Hillary, and because enough people were able to see that to vote instead for a man publicly presenting himself as a buffoon. Somewhere, I have a video of Donald Trump engaging in the usual misbehavior of the World Wrestling Federation -- funny as anyone can imagine -- and it says everything one needs to know about Hillary Clinton, that she couldn't beat THAT. Her constant whining proves to anyone with any common sense that, far from being the most qualified candidate in history, she is the LAST person we would want to have with her finger on the nuclear trigger. Arrogant? Entitled? Incompetent? How about just petty?

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    Hillary Clinton's whining vs. Trump's courting of bigoted, ignorant, stale-thinking goobers?

    That's as tough as figuring why a homeschooled, socially awkward, stale-thinking southern white guy who attended Christian survivalist camp might have conducted a series of crazed bombings.

  • Lester224||

    Hillary Clinton is irrelevant. Media harping on her is just a distraction.

  • ravenshrike||

    Point of order, while the Japanese do not use bowling balls they do use a bowling ballesque device to simulate a person's head slamming into the hood of a car and how much flex the hood provides. If sufficient flex in the hood isn't present and the g-forces on the "bowling ball" are too much, the car fails the test.

  • Tris||

    The whole 'gaslighting' concept is utterly subjective and it boils down to one person and another having alternate takes on the world. It's a pre-emptive, aggressive power move to say that someone who sees things differently is gaslighting you. You are free to object and not to agree, if you don't agree. Of course, both Trump and Hillary are so massively certain of themselves--and so massively wrong, by normal rational objective standards--that the charge sticks pretty well against both of them. But I should think that proponents of 'reason' would prefer to just stick to the arguments against horrible politicians like them.

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