Fear & Loathing 2020: Tactical Voting

The Knives Out sequel was released quicker than I expected.
John Iadarola, on tonight’s Democratic debate

We’re not at the debate tonight.  Nothing we want to know is happening there; we’re here to meet the candidates, not listen to their stump speeches.  (Besides, we were anti-invited. “If you show up, we will not let you in.  This is for real press, not bloggers.”  But that’s neither here nor there.)

So we went to a Tulsi Gabbard town hall event in the middle of nowhere, and I’ll tell you all about that later.  Instead, I want to talk about “tactical voting” and the myth of “electability”.

Something I keep hearing from everyone I talk to up here — everyone that’s not press — is the great responsibility they have to choose the right candidate.  Sure, we like Bennet, but he doesn’t have name recognition; Elizabeth Warren is brilliant, but she’s just not electable; we absolutely love listening to Tulsi, but THEY will never let someone like her get the nomination.  So instead, maybe we’ll go with that Mayor guy; he seems nice…

But who is THEY?  Heh.  I’ll tell you who THEY are.

I had a Democrat who I love dearly and hold in the highest esteem tell me, “Oh, Tulsi Gabbard?  She’s not one of us.”

Tonight I listened to Tulsi, and I heard what she stands for, and that clued me in on why she isn’t one of us:  She believes in bipartisanship, in working with the folks across the aisle.  Tulsi Gabbard went to Washington to get things done, not to vote the way The Party tells her to.  Ya know how the Senate votes 53-47, right along party lines?  That’s because everyone in the Senate thinks of the other party as the enemy.  Which they’re not.

The Republicans aren’t the enemy.  The Democrats aren’t the enemy.  The people who buy and pay for Republicans and Democrats are the enemy.  That’s THEM: the Fortune 500 types that paid into Mayor Pete’s war chest, the ones that bought the patches on Joe Biden’s race jacket.  Big Oil, and the Sugar Lobby, and Big Pharma, and the Insurance Bloc — every candidate who takes massive contributions is owned, lock, stock, and barrel.  The candidates take the cash and sign on to the team and become part of THEM.  Then THEY use those donations to hire mercenaries and consultants, campaign foot soldiers and ad-men to convince all of you to vote for THEM.  The people that get convinced, the true believers?  Otherwise decent people, but if you work for THEM you’re one of THEM even if you don’t get paid.

That’s you, by the way:  You’re the dumb schmuck who works for THEM but doesn’t even hold out for a paycheck.

The only reason you’re willing to vote for one of THEM in the first place is that you’re too damned lazy to take time to do five minutes of basic research on the candidates, and if you did take the time, who could you trust?  I mean, sure, there’s me, but I’m only one guy.  You can’t trust me to tell you everything; I don’t know everything.  Sure, it’s not like I’m gonna lie; nobody’s bought me.  Hell, nobody’s even paid for my damned ramen noodles on this trip, or the rubber microwaved eggs that pass for ‘free’ breakfast in this miserable God-forsaken excuse for a hotel, and I’m so sick of ramen noodles… –Sorry; I’m drifting off topic.

The point is, you can trust me to tell the truth, but I might be wrong, and then where would you be?  Truth be told, you’ll still be one hell of a lot better off than if you never bother to read anything but instead just listen to the paid spokesmen and the talking heads on TV.  They’re bought and paid for too — by different teams, true, but they’re all just another part of THEM.

But you’re here, reading this, so there’s that in your favor.  Maybe you’re not a complete idiot after all.

(Besides, most of us just plain don’t have time.  There’s so much crap to sift through; if we’re not working, we’re commuting, or the kids are sick, or the lawn needs mowing.  We spend our lives up to our eyeballs in debt and up to our noses in bullshit, and it’s all we can do to remember not to open our mouths — and God help us if we trip.  And those few who aren’t… well, they’re happy and content, so why do they even care?)

So let me go back over it again:  THEY don’t want you to vote, and if you do vote THEY want you to be ignorant and complacent enough to vote for THEM.  So if you persist in learning things, THEY are going to do THEIR best to convince you that your vote is worthless and nothing you do matters — and if you don’t, THEY pay for the ads and the lying opinion pieces to convince you to vote for THEM.  Because if THEY convince you, you’re now one of the Faithful; you’re a footsoldier for THEM.

Does that sound a little tinfoil-hat paranoid to you?  It should.  It’s a bit crazy.

Except… stop and think for a second.  Do you honestly think we ended up where we are because the system works?  Are you confident that Donald Trump is the best person in the country to be president?  (And if so, why did the system try to impeach him?  Pro-Trump or Anti, you have to admit:  At least part of the system isn’t working right.)

Thing is, it’s not as crazy as I paint it.  THEY aren’t some grand conspiracy; it’s easier to think of it that way, but it’s not true.  Mostly THEY are simply venal, or lazy, or complacent; and then there’s those few people on top of the heap who (quite rightly) fear change.  It’s not that THEY hate you; THEY really don’t care one way or the other.  THEY‘re too busy being rich to bother.

Just like you’re too busy to research the candidates for yourself.  Otherwise, you’d know:  Every single one of them apart from Biden and Mayor Stepford is perfectly electable.  All we have to do is vote for the one we like.

And so there’s some good news for you:  I’m here learning about them (and THEM) on your behalf.

The very least you could do is buy us a real breakfast.  Here’s the donation button.


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Donate to Fear & Loathing 2020 at buymeacoff.ee/gnerphk

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