READER COMMENTS ON
(17 Responses so far...)
COMMENT #1 [Permalink]
said on 11/3/2004 @ 4:29 pm PT...
this is off topic, but worth noting. I decided a nice picture of our fine Christian president flipping the bird would look good in my rear window (with the words 'Sorry, Kerry', to keep the republicans from damaging the vehicle.) Well, you blow up that image below and it's a bit grainy, so off I go to google.com to search for a better image. Well, what do you know? I found three OTHER pictures with Bush giving the bird, plus one of his father (which I actually think was taken midgesture and probably wasn't intended.) So now I have 3 fine pictures! Will the cops pull me over if I post them?
COMMENT #2 [Permalink]
said on 11/3/2004 @ 4:47 pm PT...
Good reminder, rav. I've updated the above item to include a rather appropriate graphic to express the sentiments today of the President-Elect and his admirers.
COMMENT #3 [Permalink]
said on 11/3/2004 @ 5:01 pm PT...
"President" could claim only a slim 1% victory over his contender"
By last count (and according to your link to Yahoo), Bush held a margin of 3% over Kerry, for a difference of approximately 3.5 million votes. I'm just curious where you're getting the 1% from (is that, perhaps, his margin over the entire FIELD, and not just Kerry?), because I haven't seen those figures as yet.
"with more Americans voting against him than any candidate in history"
Actually, Clinton had 58,845,539 people vote against him in 1992 (39,103,882 for Bush, 19,741,657 for Perot), according to http://www.presidentelect.org/e1992.html
"A single percentage point over 50% is not broad."
It still beats 43%, the percentage voting for Clinton in 1992 (57% of the votes went against him). Source: http://www.presidentelect.org/e1992.html
Kerry (for whom I voted, I should add) has noted that it is time to begin healing. I sincerely hope that is what we can now do, both within America and abroad. A good place to start would be on a blog such as this, where many individuals from both sides of the political spectrum come for a smart perspective on politics. Grass roots at its finest, indeed.
I'm not pointing out the above inconsistencies in vote totals to criticize Brad; rather, I think it is important to keep what happened yesterday in perspective. Clinton (for whom I voted in 1996, but did not particularly care for in 1992) initially came into office lacking a mandate, and quite frankly, lacking considerable support in many places such as rural Ohio (where I lived while in college at the time). But as time passed, smart individuals took note and realized that for all his faults, Clinton did bring many positives to the proverbial table, and in my opinion, had a strong positive impact on many facets of our country.
I hope to God Bush can see now how bitterly divided we remain, both as a nation and on the international stage. I hope he can use this as an opportunity to reach out to those who strive to accomplish good things (and perhaps clean out that filthy "Cabinet" of his). More than anything, I hope we can use this as an opportunity to employ (as Brad noted in another response) the Golden Rule in our interactions with fellow Americans (whether Democrat or Republican), and, importantly, with our colleagues around the world. I hope.
COMMENT #4 [Permalink]
said on 11/3/2004 @ 5:19 pm PT...
How is 3.5 million votes divided?
Bush had 51%, a majority
Lets look back at some previous elections shall we?
2000 - Bush had 48%
1996 - Clinton had 49%
1992 - Clinton had 43%
1988 - Bush Sr. had 53%, a majority
1984 - Reagan had 59%, a majority
1980 - Reagan had 51%, a majority
1976 - Carter had 50%, a majority
1972 - Nixon had 60%, a majority
1968 - Nixon had 43%
1964 - Johnson had 61%, a majority
1960 - Kennedy had 49%
1956 - Eisenhower had 57%, a majority
I could keep going on, but its pointless.
The country isn't bitterly divided. Not with a 3.5 million vote margin. It isn't nearly as close as 2000 with some states being decided by a few hundred votes.
This is the first time a President has had a majority since Bush Sr. in 1988. First time in the last four elections that we've had a President get a majority of the vote.
I'd say we're less divided now solely based on that. The divison that we have just happens to be extreme in that you either love Bush or hate Bush. There are very few in the middle.
The country has spoken and the answer, is Bush.
COMMENT #5 [Permalink]
said on 11/3/2004 @ 5:39 pm PT...
Well, I would say that raw numbers alone do not point to us being "less divided." More evangelicals voted in the South. Which raises the total popular vote for Bush. Which is, of course, pointless since we use the Electoral College.
Which shows that we ARE divided. The Northeast, West Coast and Industrial Midwest (Indiana and (?) Ohio excepted) all voted Kerry. The South, Midwest and West voted Bush. The Electoral College is one of the closest in the past 30 years. And those are stark geographic divisions.
The President (and Kerry for that matter, had he won) faces a real struggle to unite this country. That's just the simple truth.
COMMENT #6 [Permalink]
said on 11/4/2004 @ 7:07 am PT...
There are 300 million people in this country. Even though my brother's four kids could not vote, they were glued to the TV and were fascinated by the election. They would have voted for Bush if they could. The are being raised with morals so they will be future Republican voters.
Their ages are 8, 10, 12, and 14 and actually know that marriage is between a man and a woman.
The turnout was supposed to help Kerry but there is a "silent" conservative majority in this country. Some of them did not remain silent this time.
COMMENT #7 [Permalink]
said on 11/4/2004 @ 7:17 am PT...
Let's be clear about these so-called evangelicals. First you are right about their turnout. Second, they are not just in the South. They are out west and a huge part of indiana and ohio.
i look at this election and i wonder what happened to the republican party. Around the turn of thelast century the were the ones who insured the African American vote. Look at the Republicans from new york who became president. Around the turn of the century they were the trust busters and tried to protect americans against runaway corporations. Think of TR and Taft (even though the were mild versions of Bob Lafollette). Now? Its horrific. And only certain aspects of the Democrat party can be trusted.
What we need are decent people like Bob Lafollette. But we need these people not as leaders but as integral parts of a movement. This is what at least half of the electorate wants. The dems are crazy not to give it to them. This is not an invitation to naderism or a third party, rather, it is necessary to struggle within the democrat party for its soul.
Bob, i know you and i disagree on some things but i think it is incontestable that the only real alternative to these Christo-fascists, and we should make no mistake about it they are fascists, is to construct an actual alternative. AT this time and place we have to begin constructing a new politics.
COMMENT #8 [Permalink]
said on 11/4/2004 @ 8:52 am PT...
just realized i referred to you as Bob. i was of course thinking of Bob Lafollette. Sorry about that.
COMMENT #9 [Permalink]
said on 11/4/2004 @ 9:10 am PT...
> is to construct an actual alternative
Go ahead and try! You're socialistic communistic ideas have every opputunity in the market place.
Not one of us are trying to stop African Americans from voting. We just want people to vote once.
COMMENT #10 [Permalink]
said on 11/4/2004 @ 11:00 am PT...
i understand that you're (which is the correct use of the contraction) not that smart so i will offer this as simply as posible. Let me begin first by saying that you are quite unaware of my political beliefs beyond whatever understanding of the label "socialist" you may possess. As for competing, for me this is not about "power" and taking power but about serving people in the best way possible. i guarantee if you and i were to sit down with a person and describe our values and how we put theminto effect in the world around us that my "ideas" would best yours almost every time. Why? Because my faith isn't something that can be passed off or passed over with these trite little phrases offered up by Bush and the American mullahtocracy.
My suggestion is that you climb off of this might makes right high horse. That's the same kind of crap that justifies the crucifixion of local populations in the pursuit of imperial power. That's really what's at stake here: imperial power and the triumphal theo-ideology of Christo-fascists against those of us who are called to witness through action. Jesus today is, among many other images i could use here, an Iraqi civilian. What have you done to serve him other than support his crucifixion by this Administration?
COMMENT #11 [Permalink]
said on 11/4/2004 @ 11:19 am PT...
Paul, your blinders are cute. You may not want to stop others from voting, but I assure you there are many in your party that do.
John, I agree there must be some large figureheads who are reasonable and forward-thinking, and I believe as Paul enjoys saying, "Clinton was the best thing for Republicans," Bush is most certainly the greatest thing to ever happen to the Democratic party.
This progression will take ten plus years or so, and just around the time Paul's nieces and nephews are rebelling against their parents in ideological angst, they will have a wonderfully strong alternative to the hate/fear groups on the right: a growing democratic movement that believes in equality, social moral values and individuality above all else.
COMMENT #12 [Permalink]
said on 11/4/2004 @ 11:22 am PT...
John, that was fantastic, I wish I had seen that post before I bothered with mine.
COMMENT #13 [Permalink]
said on 11/4/2004 @ 12:38 pm PT...
Thank you. For the record, i dont think its gonna take ten years. The ghost of Spiro T. still haunts the VP's office.
COMMENT #14 [Permalink]
said on 11/4/2004 @ 12:46 pm PT...
The desire will be there, the organization and tipping point will take some time. Rome wasn't built in a day, and despite incredible progress in just two years I see this as a 15-year plan.
Though I hope you're right!
COMMENT #15 [Permalink]
said on 11/4/2004 @ 1:09 pm PT...
Jeff, thank you for your corrections. You are correct, and I was not. I'll chalk it up to the two hours of sleep I was working on, which is not a particularly good excuse, but the only particular explanation I have. I appreciate your keeping me honest. I have added a "CORRECTION" (the first one BRAD BLOG has ever had to post! So well done!) to the original item.
COMMENT #16 [Permalink]
said on 11/4/2004 @ 1:46 pm PT...
Thanks for the update. As noted above, my intent wasn't necessarily to correct your math as it was to point out that despite his lack of a mandate, Clinton was able to go on and do many great things, including winning over an individual such as myself. As for Bush, I can only hold out hope perhaps naively, but what choice do I have at this point) for a more moderate second term, and one in which he cleans some serious house within the Cabinet.
On a personal note, Brad, I urge you to keep up what you're doing - seriously. Although I don't always agree 100% with everything you say, your blog has nonetheless forced me to open my mind and think more critically, particularly on issues I would have previously just taken for granted. As a fiscally conservative, socially-slightly-left-of-center individual, this was a very difficult election for me, but your blog (and all of the contributors to it) have helped me considerably. Thanks.
COMMENT #17 [Permalink]
said on 11/4/2004 @ 2:19 pm PT...
i think for the electoral process you may be right. Depends on how deep the next three year crap storm becomes. But i have a few ideas on influence but it will have to be more than just a few people and it involves concerted effort. More on this later.