Trump’s victory is bad in the short-term, but potentially great in the long-term

Without a doubt, the worst part of Trump’s victory is the fact that he will get to appoint at least one justice to the Supreme Court. Antonin Scalia’s death was likely the greatest political news of the century, so it’s doubtful that Trump will be able to find someone as bad as he was. Unfortunately, if he gets to replace Ginsburg, it won’t matter who he picks to replace Scalia or her. He’s going to get to add a conservative justice, swinging the court further to the right.

However, despite the problems of the Supreme Court, a Trump victory is not significantly worse than had Romney won in 2012 (or any other Republican for this election). No progress would be made on global warming under either scenario. The NSA would continue to fundamentally (and with fucking glee) violate the rights of literally every single American. Brown people overseas would keep getting droned. None of that would be different just because Trump happens to also be a bad person. Indeed, with the exception of Democrat lip service towards global warming, all of those things would be the same had Clinton won. We are not in a significantly different position in most areas.

So how is this better in the long-term? Consider the real difference between Clinton and Trump. It isn’t on spying or hawkish foreign policy or spending. It’s almost entirely in their rhetoric. Clinton, while ethically questionable through-and-through, isn’t crass. She has some basic decency in how she expresses herself. Trump, on the other hand, is a raging moron who mocks disabled reporters and grabs women by the pussy. His outsider nature was able to override people’s disgust with him as a person, but that novelty will fade. And as it does, we’re going to see a continued split amongst Republican voters. Combine that with the minor defections we’re going to see from Democrats who weren’t happy with the DNC primary rigging, and we have the perfect storm for the rise of a third party.

I’m not sure which third party we might see in 2020, but whichever one it is, it will have to to be the middle of the road. The Libertarians fit that bill, but the problem with them is that people conflate libertarianism as a political movement with libertarianism as a philosophy. Any political theory must take reality into account whereas the same isn’t true of philosophy. The Libertarian party isn’t rigid in its views, and neither was its candidate, but that didn’t matter to people because they know the philosophy is much more straight-forward. I can’t remember how many times someone told me Gary Johnson believed x when, in fact, he didn’t. People would assume he believed x because it would be consistent with libertarian philosophy to do so, but they never bothered to actually look up what he said. (For instance, did you know Johnson wanted to eliminate the EPA? Crazy, right? Except he didn’t. In fact, he cited the EPA as a well-run government agency that he supported.)

If people on one side or the other try to rise up with a third party, however, it will fail. We saw that with the Tea Party, and we see it every time the Green party gets a little momentum. These ultra-right and ultra-left groups are inherently on the fringes. They can’t succeed because they can never draw nearly enough of the people from the center. Just consider the 3 main third party candidates. Gary Johnson was the closest to the middle, so he did the best. Jill Stein? She’s far-left, so she did poorly. Evan McMullin? Even when we recognize his limited ballot access, he still had no chance of pulling anyone from the Clinton camp.

This is my great hope from the election. We desperately need a viable third party, and disgust with Trump can fuel that. For whatever negative consequences he may bring, his presidency may prove to be the end of the two party duopoly.

More reason to respect Jon Huntsman

It seems like this is the only guy in the Republican field with any common sense:

The conservative news magazine Newsmax announced Friday that it would co-sponsor a Republican presidential debate moderated by media personality and real estate tycoon Donald Trump on Dec. 27th in Des Moines, Ia., but they may have trouble convincing candidates to show up.

Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman is the first to send his regrets.

“We look forward to watching Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich suck up to Trump with a big bowl of popcorn,” Huntsman spokesman Tim Miller told Yahoo News.

It is beyond me why so many of these candidates have taken the time to meet with Trump. He’s a doofus with nothing to add to anything. He knows less about taxes and foreign policy than Herman Cain, he isn’t the least bit intelligent, and every show he has ever done has been shitty. But maybe that’s it. Maybe it’s his ignorance, his stupidity, and his inability to entertain that draws so many Republicans to him. After all, who do Republicans like? People like Bush and (until the recent news about how he uses his wiener) Cain – stupid and/or ignorant people. People like Steve Doocy and that guy on Fox & Friends who isn’t Steve Doocy – people who can’t entertain. Maybe it all does make sense.

President Obama mocks Trump

Good:

President Barack Obama told jokes at the expense of real estate mogul Donald Trump Saturday night, mocking his possible presidential ambitions in remarks at the annual White House Correspondents’ Association dinner.

With Trump in the hotel ballroom audience of celebrities, politicians and journalists, Obama zeroed in on talk fueled by Trump that the president was not U.S.-born…

“Donald Trump is here tonight. And I know that he’s taken some flak lately. But no one is happier, no one is prouder to put this birth certificate matter to rest than ‘The Donald,'” Obama said, using Trump’s nickname.

“And that’s because he can finally get back to focusing on the issues that matter. Like, did we fake the moon landing? What really happened in Roswell? And where are Biggie and Tupac?” Obama added, drawing laughs and applause.