Friday, November 13, 2020
Corona Jottings: Intermittent Speculations (#13)
Given the results, the number of voters, the actual count, it appears clear that the likelihood of a Biden/Harris victory was less than the faulty polls forecasted. It wasn’t a squeaker, but it took days to conclude and nearly a hundred million “absentee” votes. This is depressing on any number of levels. The Democrats lost a handful of things in early November of 2020, mainly, it appears, a half dozen seats in the House, and control of the Senate – the Georgia special elections could change that, but two wins may well be one Congressional district too far. Stacey Abrams may be a magician, but rabbits out of a top hat, if the hat be Georgia, may strain even her handy legerdemain. It would require a miracle of sorts. And how many miracles can we stand? The Corona Virus can be seen as an especially perverse miracle – insofar as it powered the defeat of Donald Trump. Biden/Harris won by close to five million votes, but the lion’s share of those came from California. What seemed to be the chief mover of the suburban ladies was Trump’s inept handling of the plague. Yet, luckily, the winning margins in the re-blued states, MI, PA, WI, were all in the five figures, as held true for the other new blue states, Arizona (barely) and, still perhaps, Georgia. Nothing like 2000's meager 537 in Florida, allowing Bush to beat Gore, with the help of the Supreme Court. The Donald wasn’t able to give the Corona virus his full attention: it’s often hard to imagine his “full attention.” That presumes a completeness Trump may lack in all things. Though Democrats aren’t as proficient in the spinning of conspiracy theories as the GOP is, here’s one, one that requires Divine Intervention: The Pandemic itself interceded. Evolution seems to require accident as well as design. Where’s Darwin when we need him? In any case, the election year commenced with Bernie Sanders on the way to seeming victory in the primaries. But two things happened before Covid took over the landscape. South Carolina became the dike keeping the Bernie Bros from swamping the Democrats. Mayor Pete and Senator Amy dropped out, anointed Biden right before Super Tuesday, and, with their abdication, cemented the anti-Bernie vote for Biden. The rest, as they say, is history, though history and everything else came to a halt for the Pandemic. Biden in the basement, Kamala made Veep candidate, millions affected, hundreds of thousands dead, Trump being Trump, his incompetency, now, shown to be fatal. Yet, nonetheless, he got 71 million votes to Biden/Harris’s 76. Though Biden’s main campaign pitch was that he would be the president for everyone, 71 million voters wanted The Donald to be theirs, and theirs alone. One could be forgiven for thinking half the country wanted even more Trumpism, though the other half wanted Trump disappeared. His loss of the Oval Office is apparent, his absence from the public’s attention is not. But, again, the luck of drawing to multiple inside straights in many districts came from the worried reaction to the virus. Trump retained more adherents than most commentators predicted, virus be damned. In the current eerie interregnum Trump is installing “loyalists” in every office he can get his hands on. One wonders why, though what he is doing has the putrid odor of a third-world would-be coup, the storming of the power centers, the Pentagon, etc. From Trump, none of this is surprising, though his core government power brokers appear – hard to believe – yet more odious. Secretary of State Pompeo (nomen est omen, since it’s harder to be more pompous than he) looms fat and crazy, staying away from the homeland, cultivating God Knows What as he plans his future. Mitch McConnell does his lesser vampire impersonation, his body getting transfusions of some sort (those bruised taped hands!) in order to do The Donald’s – the impaler – bidding. The rest of the GOP Senators, except for the occasional Mormon, continue to play the undead, mumbling that votes still need to be counted, as soon as they are manufactured. That wall may begin to crumble soon. Trump may be bad, but in a big-bad-baddest competition, he’s got rivals. Why does McConnell get to hold his members together, a solid block of awful, whereas Senator Schumer has uncontrollable outliers, such as West Virginia’s Senator Joe Manchin? I know, I know, one’s a minor vampire, the other is not. But the problem that still looms is all the voters Trump got, retained. Their allegiance, their solidarity. Our Fellow Americans, so to speak. Time may continue to be halted, certainly deformed, because of the Pandemic, but three years from now I dread the election that will be upon us. Given Biden’s age and the state of the Union, I only see a horror show ahead. Who expects the Republicans to have regained their souls, stolen from them all by The Donald. And his “base” – they, it, will still be here, the deluded and the corrupt and the profiteers. It’s a spectrum of foul smells, regions, income, and clearly nowhere to escape it.