Thursday, November 10, 2016

Numbers Time: No Gloating

I've been darting between stages of grief in the last day or so. I wore all black and retreated into a hoodie while triple checking election returns and wondering how the electoral college could flip the result. So I've got Depression and Bargaining covered.

Today, I'm just pissed.

We all have to take responsibility for what happened Tuesday. All of us. Starting with me. I have been saying for months that she was going to lose. History was against her. Not because she's establishment or weak, but because Obama was too liberal, and the country tends not to like that much. I got called cynical and pessimistic for saying it wasn't a lock. But also, I've been a total asshole to a lot of people about it. That's on me. I don't know how to have this conversation. Armed with years of reading, both in school and for fun, I could see something no one else saw, and I wasn't very good at articulating it. When faced with people too rosey or people who thought it was perfectly acceptable to vote for Stein or Johnson, I got nasty and dismissive. As a result, I fed into everything they were already feeling about elitists looking down on them.

I think everyone needs to do the same. Everyone.

But also, I'm pissed, and I'm pretty clear on who I'm pissed at. It's clearly Bernie supporters and Stein voters (Johnson voters to a lesser extend, but fuck you too). You sit there in your liberal bubble calling Trump voters racist and ignorant. News flash, you're classist and equally ignorant. The first gloaters on my Facebook feed weren't Trump supporters, they were Bernie assholes. No, fuck you, you do not know with any certainty Bernie would have had this locked up. How, exactly? He couldn't even win the Democratic Primary. And don't fucking tell me it was rigged. If the system was really rigged, how did the magical DNC fraud machine not pull this one out? The general election was a hell of a lot closer than the primary.

And I'm sorry, there is no such thing as a protest vote, just a President Trump. I said I would blame you if Trump won, and I plan on sticking to my guns. I blame every Stein voter, and I blame every Bernie voter who voted for Hillary but then also defended their friends who planned on voting for Stein. Yes, I hear your concerns. Hillary was establishment and you don't trust her. Yes, if we had given you the candidate you wanted, you'd have voted for Bernie instead. That doesn't change the fact that right now, Donald Trump is the President-Elect, and it's your fucking fault.

Okay, time for the numbers. Here's what happened:

Trump: 306, Clinton: 232

Let's start with the fucking insane and pull back. Let's call every vote that wasn't for Trump an anti-Trump vote. First, we assume every Clinton, Johnson and, Stein vote would have gone to Hillary. I know, I know, that's not how it works, but I'm starting there.

My sample set is the states who reported votes within 47%-53% for Trump. I'm calling these the swing states. Here they are listed in order of Trump's percentage, color coded for which way they swung.

Trump vs. Non-Trump
 State E. VotesTrumpNon-Trump

Trump: 220, Clinton: 318

Again, this model has no basis in reality. Johnson was pulling support from both candidates. Saying his votes would have 100% gone to Clinton is ridiculous. It's just nice to see just how many people voted against Trump. And if wishes were horses, this would be the result.

So onto model #2. Let's pull back the Gary Johnson numbers a bit. I'd say at least 50% of them would have voted for Trump if they didn't have an option. And maybe 30% would have gone for Clinton. I saw an article saying Clinton would have received 50% of the Johnson voters. That's ridiculous. I think 30% is a stretch. Hell, I think 50% for Trump is a stretch, but let's go with it. I think we can safely say at least 20% would have just stayed home. So here's Trump + 50% Johnson and Clinton + Stein + 30% Johnson.

Johnson = 50%DT+30%HRC+20%abstain
 State E. Votes DT+50%GJ HRC+JS+30%GJ

Trump: 290, Clinton: 248

Despite some of the insane things you might be reading on pie-in-the-sky sources, Gary Johnson might have been the best hope for Clinton, giving people on the right a second option. You know, because that's what third party candidates always do. The race would not have been better for Clinton if he wasn't in it.

Which brings us to model #3. The main event. Moment of truth. Did Jill Stein totally Nader this election for Hillary? If every Jill Stein voter actually understood the process. If every Jill Stein voter understood that voting for Jill Stein is a waste. If every Jill Stein voter understood that Trump and Clinton were the only real candidates in this race, and anyone serious about voting should vote for the serious candidate most aligned with their values. Why? Because a vote isn't a fucking protest. It's a fucking vote. Because third party candidates never fucking win, and they only help the side they're not on. This model is with Gary Johnson, but if Jill Stein had removed her name from contention, as if she actually cared about the country.

A Race Without Jill Stein
 State E. VotesTrumpHRC+JS

Trump: 280, Clinton: 258

Would you look at that, she still would have lost. I stand corrected. At least with a margin this close, I might even stand behind faithless electors tipping the election. Or there would be more re-counts. Or at least more outcry that she won so many more votes than him. But if these Stein votes represent the rest of the Bernie coalition, tell me again how he would have won so easily?

But that's my point. None of us have some authority on the facts. You don't have some extra understanding just because you supported a Progressive Socialist. When you say things like, "He would have won, easily," based on no actual facts, you sound just a stupid as you think Trump voters sound. That's the answer. We need to stop demonizing the other side. That includes me, and I hope this rant is my last hurrah into asshole-dom (it won't be). This election was the first time I realized how ignorant, close-minded, and anti-intellectual liberals can be. I thought that was just people on the right.

We are all in our little bubbles. We are all tribal. We all demonize the other side. The answer isn't pretending we know everything, it's accepting what we don't. There is a massive part of this country that just said in one voice that they are tired of us belittling them. They are tired of us mocking them. Tired of us treating them like some backwater hicks who just want to set the country backwards. It's not that simple. It never is. Until we all start looking at each other with respect and understanding, this will just keep happening. They are marginalized, and we go on TV attacking their way off life, or sitting in front of the TV laughing along.

We all have to let go of a worldview that says 50% of this country is just wrong. Maybe if we started listening to them, they wouldn't feel like Trump was their only hope.

I am sorry to all the people I've pissed off in the last year, and I'm sorry I couldn't communicate my thoughts better. History just repeated itself, and we just have to keep being vigilant to stop it from getting worse.

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