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Mike Cooper

It would have been poetic justice for Hillary to win and to have to oversee 4 more years of decline. Trump will probably accelerate some things, yes. And he will probably make certain people richer and certain other people less well off. But I do genuinely wonder how many of Trump's crackpot ideas are actually implementable? And hence - how much worse will he actually be than Hillary would have been?

All the opinion and reasoning I've seen so far seems to have no real idea of why he won. Clueless media indeed.

But it's true - Trump and Brexit are 2 products of the same reaction to an Elite who have made the world shittier for the majority. Looking forward to an Italian referendum loss and subsequent political upheaval, and Marine Le Pen becoming French president next. And then Germany later next year, Merkel will be out I reckon.

Interesting times, indeed.

Ken Barrows

Could our clueless media elites have been any other way? If not, sadness is really trumped (sorry) by resignation. It's the human way. It's just hitting the USA at this particular moment; it didn't matter so much when Americans could increase their oil consumption 6-7% per year.


Hi Dave, just try to enjoy the ride down.

What just amazes me is how obvious (it seemed to me anyways) it was that Sanders would beat Trump easily, but the Dems were so determined to get Clinton in. Even though the party itself did what they could to skew things her way, there were still so many regular Dem voters that they bought the story that she was the best possible candidate.

So the Dems did end up rigging the election, just in a way that they lost. Oopsie!

Jeremy MG


That's kind of what I'm trying to figure out, here. What makes him so much infinitely worse in terms of the speed of decline? I thought the greater danger was a narrow Clinton win, with Trump and his supporters not accepting the results, inflaming the disenfranchised voters. With his victory, those people have been shown they have a voice, I suppose. No one was able to steal this from them. I feel like now, just like with Obama, the real powers in the country can begin to mold Trump into the the president they want him to be.

I don't know. I'm really confused at this point. My wife asked me why I was so stressed last night as it became obvious he was going to win. I couldn't really put it into words. I have no idea what he's going to do as President. He was best friends with the opponent he was talking about sending to jail not too long ago. He praised her husband as a great President not more than a decade before calling him a rapist. This is among the countless other positions he took years ago that are a complete 180 from his supposed current ones. Does someone really flip so much that late in life in such a short amount of time?

Stay tuned, I guess. Russia apparently wants to be our friends now. I guess that's not bad, maybe? Who knows? I certainly don't.


Now, because elections are contested between humans, is the time for vindictive blame assignment.

If it hasn't started yet, it will...

They will blame third-party voters..
Sanders voters...
Media outlets...
The FBI...
and who knows who/what else.

What we do know is that they won't blame themselves.

A Bad Thing has happened to a large group of people invested in the idea of the status quo. Human nature more or less demands that Bad Things be mitigated in some way that allows them to fit into our world view. It can't be filtered (I mean, Trump is going to be POTUS, kind of hard to ignore that), so blame must be assigned. The personal integrity must be preserved. The happy world view must be protected.

Yes, the blame game will start soon (if it hasn't already... I don't know... I really can't watch...)


As I see it in my little corner of Flatland, yesterday's results derive from the darkest election night in my lifetime, November 4, 1980, when the Democrats lost not only the presidential race but senators like Frank Church, Birch Bayh, John Durkin, George McGovern, Gaylord Nelson, Warren Magnuson, Mike Gravel among others.

After that the Democrats turned to the centrist neoliberals of the DLC and they in turn have brought us directly to this election.

Whatever Trump does (and I agree with JMG, nobody, possibly not even The Donald himself knows what he will do) my question is, "What will the Democrats do?"

Is this what it finally takes to force the Democrats to evolve or are they just going to keep talking about Trump?

Dave Cohen



Go Fuck Yourself, America

No. Really. Just go fuck yourself, you racist piggy white power pieces of shit. You wear shirts that laugh about lynching reporters. (That smarts!) You scream “nigger” at men who turn out to be goddamn saints while you’re whitesplaining them the fucking Boondocks. You teach your kids to tell their classmates how great life will be once they’re deported. You beat up homeless people, for Jesus and America too.

And you think it’s fucking adorable.

Did you #rig it? Fuck! Maybe! I’ve always been a little partial to the Alex Jones side of the sanity spectrum, but forgive me if I wonder: I didn’t see Anonymous riding to Hillary Clinton’s rescue, when four years ago they taunted Karl Rove that they’d trapped his little vote rats in the internet tubes. (Yeah, “citation needed,” Anonymous.) And we all know Trump loves to accuse people of every thing he’s doing himself. Besides, you’ll never convince me John Kerry lost Ohio in 2004. Oh, should I not say that in polite wonky company, if I want to keep my cool pundit card? WELL FUCK POLITE WONKY COMPANY, THAT WAS ‘WONKY’ AS SHIT.

Let’s talk about all the things that will be terrible now! BECAUSE PEOPLE ARE EVIL AND EVERYONE SUCKS.

Are you a black person? I’m sorry, everyone hates you, like, personally :(

Are you Latina? Chica, lo siento!

Do you like doing things in #butts with your husband, who is a man? The next four justices just deported your adopted baby back to Cambodia, too bad, it was nice while it lasted.

Are you just a regular straight old boring ass white person, and the cops don’t roust you none, but you also like eating food and having shelter? WELL DONALD TRUMP JUST BREXITED YOUR STOCK MARKET, and he’ll do for the country what he did for his casinos.

And his airline.

And his steak.

And his magazine.

He lost fucking money on LIQUOR.

And he doesn’t know jack shit about ANYTHING, and say goodbye to that last white-knuckled grasp on the middle class. Oh, you care about “the debt”? He just blew it up by FIVE. TRILLION. DOLLARS. He promised to treat the country’s bondholders like he treated the people who paid off his bankruptcies: by not paying them shit. Hello, Greece! Is life fun there under Nazis?

But sure, “economic anxiety,” you sister-raping neanderthals. Enjoy your brother-in-law’s meth trailer.

Did you like that 4.5 percent unemployment rate? Did you like being able to buy yourself a treat when you went to stock up on toothpaste at Walgreens, and saying to yourself, HEY LOOK, I BOUGHT ME A TREAT? Yeah, fuck a treat, you don’t get your retirement fund, and no mortgage payment, and no job.

Women? Lol, honey, don’t make that face. It’s so ugly on you, that persona. Also: you don’t matter, and you never will.

Muslims? It’s Tuesday. Prepare for your beating.

Media? Oh, yours is coming. Mighta thought about that when you were playing footsie with James Comey.

Oh shit, I almost forgot about Obamacare! Now, if you’re like us, you won’t be able to buy insurance for your family! Instead we’ll get repealed and replaced with “the lines around the states!”

This dumb fucking fuck.

I deny that a woman like Hillary Clinton lost to that monstrous Horror Klown for any reason besides THIS COUNTRY IS HORRIBLE. Fuck your bullshit emails, fuck your bullshit FBI, fuck your bullshit “she ran a bad campaign; she was a dud and he was exciting.” The man is a rambling, boring toddler. If they “loved him,” it wasn’t for his charisma, it was for his flat-out fascism, BECAUSE THEY ARE LIZARD-BRAINED PEOPLE WHO LOVE TORTURING OTHERS.

They get off on it. It fucking gets them off.

Oh man and do they haaaaate us women. Oh man, a bossy old bitch wasn’t going to tell them what to do! And that glass ceiling at the Javits Center. Oh, haw haw haw.

This is where I fake some Pollyanna bullshit to leave you on some uplift, and it’ll make you share this post.


Come back tomorrow for some pony bullshit, I might be able to fake it for you by then.

Now buy my fucking FUCK YOU AMERICA shirt while you still have any fucking money left.

You stupid fucking dicks.


-- Dave


I feel compelled to say something where people won't say "but, but..."

Hillary was a terrible candidate that wore her price tag on her sleeve, and made no secret of being a lapdog to the bankers. But ultimately what led to this was also Obama, who promised hope and change, but delivered a presidency that propped up every element of the status quo for another 8 years - the banks, the wars, the inequality, all of it. Obamacare itself was a kludge to prevent an already badly failing health system from imploding, but for a number of reasons is failing at even that.

To be fair, he was vilified for being (half)black and having a Muslim father. The rage against him was far beyond what would normally come from his competent (at least compared to W) but unimaginative presidency. Yet in reality, we needed a TR or FDR. And that he was not. The Occupy Wall Street protests were crushed on his watch, even the vile executions of black men at the hands of the police have been mostly given a pass.

Now we have Trump. I can't say I'm that surprised, a bit but not shocked. What gets me is the defenses of Hillary, and the surprise of my Democrat friends, and their horror at Trump. Really, what did you expect?


One thing I have noticed so far in watching various "analysts", "pundits", what have you, trying to explain what happened in this election was their concentration on economics-a strong variable to be sure-but not touching on the issue of cultural tribal backlash. Humans are a tribal species and when a tribe has achieved king-of-the-hill status in terms of social and cultural hegemony, attempts to usurp power and thus reshape the cultural landscape will have them feeling backed into the corner by an existential threat at some point resulting in them will mounting a vicious defense of their position.

The Trump phenomenon, in my opinion/observation was more accurately demonstrative of historical human social behavior than the "pundits" realize-or, deferring to Homo Sapiens inability to a accept the reality of what they really are, are willing to acknowledge. The Utopian visions of they delusional victims of Obligatory Optimism were promulgated with a sense of smug condescension and dismissal which elicited massive resentment on the part of those who unconsciously perceived themselves rightful partakers of the "we run the place" buffet who felt their place at the table was in danger.

The problem throughout the presidential campaign was the mistaken perception of Trump as an outlier or an anomaly rather than an opportunist recognizing the legitimacy and depth of the resentment without bothering with questions of what the result might be of tapping into it. The idealistic deniers of the reality of what this species is really about will likely fumble around trying to find explanations which fit into their counterfactual paradigms of "How Human really work" and continue to hallucinate John Lennon's "Imagine" as a potential textbook for a "beautiful harmonious world" and refuse to accept Homo Sapiens as the clever and inventive yet narcissistic rapacious primate it really is.

Jacob Horner

Wow. Good on you, Dave. About dawn this morning I sent that link to my small circle of family & friends...nothing quite like Rebecca going full fucking wonkette. Very surprised to find it here...
but, then again,
not really.

I also sent these, which may or may not be relevant...th'fk do I know?



"Those who vote white in order to not get dirty"

Oh, Yeah

Dave Cohen


Really, it was the last 5 lines, repeated for everybody's convenience.

This is where I fake some Pollyanna bullshit to leave you on some uplift, and it’ll make you share this post.


Come back tomorrow for some pony bullshit, I might be able to fake it for you by then.

Now buy my fucking FUCK YOU AMERICA shirt while you still have any fucking money left.

You stupid fucking dicks.

"pony bullshit" -- oh, yeah! Love it.

-- Dave


Great comment Robert, I suppose we will never get a pundit willing to say, as an explanation for these sorts of things; "homo sapiens is a self-obsessed clannish primate, what you see is what you get."


RS Bakker has republished his essay on how digital tribalistic Balkanization has fucked us as a species by allowing us to indulge freely in our inherent primate "ingroup/outgroup" heuristics on a global scale, unencumbered by unified informational sources or geography. Seems even more relevant than before.


Although, I suppose it also lets me find this place.

Surely WE are the holders of the secret knowledge, right?

Jacob Horner

Yes. My girls grew up with My Little Pony.
Some have a way with raw and brutal metaphor...a beautiful thing.
Wish I was one.
Forgot this...


In my imagination we are sharing a bottle of Makers Mark.
So...Here's to us and those like us.


Good comment, Robert! And I also appreciated Greer's analysis of why so many Americans would vote for Trump in order to help their particular tribe, misguided or not (I know Joe Bageant wouldn't have been surprised by Trump's success):



After the pundits are able to recover from the vapors, this election will get spun a million different ways (including pony bullshit), each catered to fit a specific niche market's particular appetite.


The only time Americans will vote for an incumbent party for President after being in power for more than 8-12 years is during a world war or after a civil war. Every other time, the anger builds and builds against the incumbents, and the supporters of the incumbents become more and more complacent, that a reversal is practically inevitable.

And yet, each time we're surprised.

But here's another thing: Hillary Clinton was such a bad candidate that she lost to Donald Trump. The Donald. She lost even after having far more money:

Far more mainstream press support, far more celebrity support, far more support from Washington insiders and Wall Street, and having a former and current President campaigning with her. She lost to a guy who has limited support within even his own political party and is basically a cartoon character:

And finally, I don't think you could have asked for a better Flatland lesson that to have watched the election coverage last night. This whole season has been one big Flatland mess, but last night was something special. I might never have seen such a distilled and concentrated pile of confusion as the media heads displayed together covering the returns.

Jacob Horner

"After the pundits are able to recover from the vapors.."

Well said Jim. I didn't have the stomach to watch last night and I still haven't the stomach to venture any farther than my small set of must-read sites. This guy rarely disappoints...



Dave Cohen

I saw my sister over the weekend (she lives in Kansas City).

She'd been working for Hillary. She asked me if we were approaching some kind of "tipping point" in the United States.

I told her that the first blow had already happened in 2008, and the "tipping point" she feared had arrived now. The economic crash and its aftermath set up what happened this week.

The result didn't have to be Donald Trump. We could easily have gotten someone like Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio.

The arrogance and self-interest of our ruling elites, and Obama in particular, caused them to ignore the political dangers inherent in the crash. Inequality got worse, more jobs got outsourced, student debt skyrocketed, Wall Street was not reined in, the Fed blew another stock bubble, and on and on. Bad trends kept trending. Most Americans never felt the "recovery" in all these years. Somehow it was supposed to be enough that shitty jobs became plentiful lately.

Human memories are short of course, but try to think back to all those times you heard about the "recovery" in the past six years. In fact, I stopped writing about how this "recovery" had never really happened for most Americans. How many times did I have to say the same thing? How much data did I have to present to demonstrate it? That got old, but that's not to say it didn't happen.

The phrase "tipping point" is vague and hard to define, but history makes them easy to see in retrospect. Seeing the present one was just common sense, given the crash eight years ago, given the insanity of the past year, that things would never be the same again, that the polarization was deep and abiding.

And here we are.

-- Dave


Dave you told us with utter confidence Clinton would win. Now you tell us that you were overly optimistic. You've also ridiculed the possibility that methane clathrates melting in the arctic will release enough methane to cause an extinction event - i.e. catastrophic runaway climate change in the near term. Let's hope you're not too optimistic about this too.

Jeremy MG

I don't see what one has to do with the other.

Dave Cohen

Normally I wouldn't put up with Doomer horseshit here, but today I could care less.

Aside from the fact that calling a horse race and being confident about physical science are two entirely different things, a rapid extinction event would provide some welcome relief from all this human horseshit in all its multifarious manifestations.

-- Dave


The point is that even really smart people, deep thinkers, like the guy who authors this blog, can get things completely wrong. The unfathomable happens.


@Dave: maybe Cruz, but I'm not sure about Rubio. The whole election was anti-establishment, and Rubio never got off the ground because of it. People are pissed. Little Marco wasn't going to appeal this time around as an insider.

The Democrats lost this game the past 2-3 years by becoming the establishment. President Obama stopped being the crusader for the average guy and became the defender of the system (one can argue he never was a real defender of the average guy, but I'm mostly talking about public perceptions). By trying to burnish his legacy and pitching stuff like jobs growth, he came off as ignoring the plight of those struggling.

Clinton decided to play it safe and run on her experience and temperament, and on how much Trump sucks, but none of those messages were going to work this cycle. It had to be about improving the lives of the struggling instead of catering to the comfortable. Sanders and Trump met that need, and Clinton didn't.

She assumed she had the support of traditional Democratic areas and voters, but she didn't inspire them at all. She didn't even step foot in Wisconsin. The elite class is so wrapped up in their own bubble they actually can't conceive that there is a different world outside of it. Clinton won the popular vote, but that was only because of California and New York. Those outside of the hubs of the empire voted against her or stayed home.

The media only added fuel to the fire by siding so decisively with Clinton. They confirmed the perception of those outside their bubble as being biased for the elite. It'll be hard for them to shake off that perception now, and I'm pretty sure they cost support for the Democrats in their blindness to buy or cajole votes with their tactics this year.

But, the "deplorables" and the Trump supporters who actually believe he'll create change have been placated for the next two years or so. That part of the country has been effectively neutralized for now, unless there's a sudden economic shock or global conflict. Trump and the Republicans have a clean slate for at least two years, and we'll probably see a bunch of policies that only worsen conditions for many, but that will take some time to sink in.

@Jeremy MG: it doesn't. They just have to have their doomer fix, and politics doesn't provide the necessary adrenaline rush.

Jeremy MG


"Clinton decided to play it safe and run on her experience and temperament, and on how much Trump sucks, but none of those messages were going to work this cycle."

This was basically the way Kerry campaigned in 2004.

"Hey, my opponent is more or less retarded. Vote for me."


@Brian: yep, and already started:

Mike Roberts

So, is America a democracy? A rhetorical question of course. Your next president got a minority of votes. Your next president didn't even get more votes than any other candidate (as Jim pointed out).

As far as I can determine, Clinton spent twice as much as Trump. She got the media behind her, multiple celebrities, climate scientists, the current president, Wall St. and just about all commentators. As far as I could tell, Trump just had himself. Yet she could barely get 200K votes more than him (and lost the Electoral College vote).

The markets rose just before the election as a Clinton victory was anticipated. The markets rose the day after the election as it seemed the transition to Trump is likely to be smooth.

America is not the only place that has gone to shit but this election has highlighted that state for that particular country.

We live in interesting times. Which is all we can hope for.

Jacob Horner

Spontaneous...right now in NYC. And in Seattle & Portland & Chicago & Philadelphia & ... Go figure.

"... took the Amtrak in from Connecticut tonight. They were about in their fifties and they said that they skipped their show at Carnegie Hall in order to join."


I like it. Oh, yeah

Jacob Horner

Yikes...I don't have television and had been reading all day.

Anyone else kicked TV ? Here's the Guardian live feed...


Definitely has lifted my mood.


Far right and their ideology... gonna make all that great again


I wasn't one bit surprised that the Donald won, in fact I thought he would. People have had enough on multiple levels, from economics to identity politics, to the knee deep corrupt b.s. at every turn.
An interesting read:
How you lost the world


Thanks for the reply Dave. Appreciate it... and I must admit to enjoying todays full-blown nihilism!

"Ve believe in nussing Lebowski, NUSSING." :-)

Great comments from others also, a most insightful read.

Given the recent electoral events (you remember - the one involving a nasty suit wearing tangerine buffoon with a salon styled tumbleweed sat upon an over-ripe canary melon with a swolen & badly infected cats anus for a mouth), here's some pertinent wisdom from minds much greater than mine...

"Beware that, when fighting monsters, you yourself do not become a monster. For when you gaze long into the abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you.” - Nietzsche

"Government is an association of men who do violence to the rest of us."
"Governments not only are not necessary, but are harmful and most highly immoral institutions." - Tolstoy

"The priviliged man, whether he be priviliged politically or economically, is a man depraved in intellect and heart."
"When the people are being beaten with a stick, they are not much happier if it is called "the Peoples Stick"." - Bakunin

"Ah, fuck it Dude. Lets go bowling." - Sobchak

Mike Cooper

@Mike Roberts - the reason I thought Trump might win was precisely that, Clinton had all the medi, all the pundits, almost all the celebs, the news (except I guess for Fox, I'm in the UK and that's how it seemed from here) etc., and I thought that the parallel with Brexit was just far too close, and that 'the People' would rebel by voting against the advice of all the experts.

And now look where we are. Britain divided into Brexiters and Remainers (or Remoaners as the Brexiters call them), racial hatred and xenophobia on the increase, and a right wing Government determined to plough on destroying the Welfare State and peoples' rights while spouting populist schtick. And the US? Well, who knows what will happen, but, I'm sure it won't be pretty.

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