Wednesday, September 16, 2020

The 2000 Presidential Election

I think a lot about the 2000 presidential election in the US, about Al Gore and how the world would be different today if it hadn't been for the Palm Beach County, FL, butterfly ballot, which meant that thousands of people accidentally voted for right-wing ideologue Pat Buchanan instead of VP Al Gore;  Ralph Nader, who got more than 93,000 votes in Florida; and the halted recount of ballots in Florida (damn you, SCOTUS). 

  • John Roberts and Samuel Alito wouldn't be on the Supreme Court today (or they would have had to wait for the next Republican president).
  • Gore just might have listened to the intelligence reports that said Osama bin Laden was planning an attack on the US, and maybe to the FBI reports about people taking lessons in how to fly jets.
  • If 9/11 had happened, Gore would have gone after bin Laden rather than cooking up lies to justify the disastrous Iraq War, which cost hundreds of thousands of lives, billions of dollars, and what stability there was in the region.
  • We would almost certainly have had real action on global warming.
Contemplate the above when people tell you the Democrats and the Republicans are the same. Contemplate the willingness of the Republican Party to hold up a SCOTUS nominee. Contemplate the GOP's eagerness to restrict the rights of your fellow citizens to vote. Contemplate their happiness in denying economic relief to your fellow citizens and their unwillingness to support the public health measures that could greatly limit the pandemic (as we approach 200,000 acknowledged dead). Contemplate their willingness to stand by as career civil servants are replaced by Trump's incompetent and criminal cronies.

The parties aren't identical. Don't believe anyone who tells you they are.

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