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Keillor writes: "It's the scariest and hairiest election of this old man's life, and I pore over the polls and the electoral maps."

Garrison Keillor. (photo: Wisconsin Public Radio)
Garrison Keillor. (photo: Wisconsin Public Radio)


Donald Trump Is Four Centuries Too Late

By Garrison Keillor, The Washington Post

13 October 16

 

his was the week the man,

Changed his mind about mass deportation.

There will not be a total ban

Of Muslims, only extreme filtration.

And the week the nominee was unhorsed

By a revelatory video that hit

And the New York Times was forced

To print words that were not fit.

He was 59 and talking about his great luck

With women who were celebrity-struck

And how he was free to be a schmuck —

A cartoon, a strutting, squawking Donald Duck.

A role model, but for what role?

The Joker? Darth Vader?

A black hole?

Maybe the Terminator.

The man is a 70-year-old adolescent,

A playboy, a teen queen, a juvie.

Take him away, give him a suppressant,

Roll the credits, end of the movie.

It’s the scariest and hairiest election of this old man’s life, and I pore over the polls and the electoral maps. One day Iowa is red, the next day blue. Hillary Clinton pulls ahead in Pennsylvania, Donald Trump in Ohio. Tiny New Hampshire, more like a county than a state, comes to prominence. Other democracies miss out on the excitement because they forgot to include an electoral college, which got a bad rap in 2000 but which makes a national election a series of local ones. Democrats win the West Coast and Northeast and chunks of the Midwest, the GOP takes the Bible Belt and the Wild West, and they go marauding for the swing states. This year, Mr. Trump has succeeded in turning a number of reliably Republican states into swing states. Remarkable.

But there comes a time when a man must take a break before his brain turns to jelly and so I flew to London for a few days, and I ignored the plunge of the pound amid the nonsense of Brexit and the general political chaos — sorry, not my problem! — and simply walked around on sunny autumn days through the mazes of streets and alleys where modern office towers have been planted among Georgian and Victorian grandeur, where you get a wad of pounds from an ATM with your American cash card and stroll around the corner and there is Gough Square and Dr. Samuel Johnson’s little brick townhouse where he slaved to make the first great dictionary of English. I took a picture of it with my phone and posted it on Facebook.

Dr. Johnson said, “No man but a blockhead ever wrote, except for money,” and his house is a stone’s throw from Grub Street, where hacks and scriveners hung out in the taverns, scribbling satire, polemics, poesy, political screeds, for measly pay, a band of misfits held in low esteem like the strumpets in the doorways. Nowadays, this crowd has found a happy home on the Internet, but back when writing was all on paper, a man could be pilloried for offending the wrong prince or duke. Your arms and neck were locked in a wooden brace and people threw rotten eggs and dead fish at you. Daniel Defoe was thus punished for satirizing the church and its treatment of dissenters. He was a pen for hire who served both Whigs and Tories, and his view of politics was succinct: “All men would be tyrants if they could.” In other words, you’re all alike, liberals, conservatives, whoever, only out for power. It must’ve given him great pleasure to go off and write “Robinson Crusoe,” and imagine a peaceful hermit on a desert island.

Mr. Trump would have enjoyed the 17th century, the tumult, the divine right of kings, the suppression of Parliament. Vituperation was normal discourse, the idea of privileged sexual aggression was common in high places, money flowed freely, rich men commissioned great monuments to themselves. He was in excellent form on Sunday night, strutting, stalking, words and phrases flowing out of him like water from a hose — “disaster” and “horrible” over and over — and if you put him on Grub Street in 1650, he’d be magnificent in his great swirling robes, surrounded by courtiers and sycophants, ranting against the Puritans, supporting the monarchy, smiting his enemies. The problem in 2016 is that most of what he says is a lie. Nobody learns anything from lies. The country is not in crisis. The government is not a disaster; it is a culture of process and law and organization that is alien to him. The Syrian refugee will quickly know more about this country than the man in the triplex penthouse. It would have been better if, instead of running for president and wasting everyone’s time, he’d just sat down and written a novel.

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+82 # Activista 2016-10-13 18:46
Interesting and valid perspective on Trump. We need evolution to true social democracy as Bernie Sanders will be able to push within the present system. We do not need Trump's "revolution" back to the middle ages, to feudalism.
 
 
-157 # Ralph 2016-10-13 18:52
I suspect Clinton is going to bomb us into the stone age but who is counting millenia at this point? As for Sanders, he's looking forward and not looking back anymore ala Obomber and the Bush boy. We can toss both Sanders and Keillor into the dustbin of political history. Flaming morons.
 
 
+120 # LionMousePudding 2016-10-13 22:06
Any Progressive who calls Bernie a flaming moron is one himself.
 
 
+24 # John Escher 2016-10-14 03:23
Quoting LionMousePudding:
Any Progressive who calls Bernie a flaming moron is one himself.


Or Keillor.
 
 
-10 # Ralph 2016-10-14 14:47
Oh the humanity!
 
 
-11 # Ralph 2016-10-14 14:46
Don't forget to look forward and not backwards. You're a good German.
 
 
+1 # djean102 2016-10-16 22:06
You're full of excrement. Germany teaches their history truthfully and in full so NO one will forget the horror.
 
 
+8 # Activista 2016-10-14 14:26
"I suspect Clinton is going to bomb us into the stone age"
this nuclear war paranoia aka Trump is getting sick and transparent ..
 
 
+2 # Ralph 2016-10-14 14:43
Millions dead in the ME. Millions more made into refugees who face rampant hatred and racism with their attempted flight to safety. Your lack of empathy and abundant denial in regards to what our tax dollars achieve is both sad and tragic. Good luck. What goes around comes around.
 
 
+3 # Activista 2016-10-15 22:08
Ralph - I am a refugee - escaped to the USA in 1968 with family and $20 in my packet - to leave a communist dictatorship in Czechoslovakia.
Job for minimum wage during the day, school during the night - lot of hard work.
I criticize/d NATO induced civil war that destroyed Libya.
I criticize USA/Israel induced civil war in Syria (that process started when Bush invaded Iraq).
Yes - refugees are the product of our foreign policy.
But now under Obama we have a treaty with Iran, diplomacy with Cuba - this is progress.
 
 
-5 # lfeuille 2016-10-14 17:12
Yep. On Clinton. No on Sanders. Keillor is probably beside the point.
 
 
-2 # Ralph 2016-10-14 17:26
I sent a considerable sum of money to Sanders for a working class slob. I feel taken when he claims we need to look forward instead of backwards. The case has been made by my posters in this thread. Those who forget history are doomed to repeat it. A definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over again, expecting different results each time. The left better grow a spine real fast.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qkfZlvyE4XM
 
 
-85 # Ralph 2016-10-13 18:47
"The country is not in crisis. The government is not a disaster; it is a culture of process and law and organization that is alien to him."

Endless war, the most imprisoned society on the planet, mass environmental destruction, predatory economic systems, the US Constitution used as toilet paper in halls of DC, the list is endless. This old guy is living in the 50's and he should rest comfortable in his senility and his lack of awareness. What an effing dim bulb.

As for Kings and Queens, he'll probably be lining up for the Clinton coronation in January. What a disgusting rube.
 
 
+21 # reiverpacific 2016-10-14 11:22
Quoting Ralph:
What a disgusting rube.

Yes, you are!
 
 
-13 # Ralph 2016-10-14 14:45
Got your Pee-Wee Herman game face on eh? Nice rebuttal child.
 
 
+13 # James38 2016-10-14 20:12
The country was in crisis after GW Bush finished with it. The Economic crash and the ballooning deficit etc.

Obama did some good work fixing that mess, even though the Rethuglican troglodytes in Congress did their very best to stop everything he tried to do.

Now Trump, amidst the constant fountain of lies and distortions, calumny and vituperation, character assassination and incoherent babble, has managed not only to demonstrate that his qualifications for President are non-existent, he has come up with an economic plan that Hillary aptly named "Trumped-up trickle down".

Trump is a lying bloviating buffoon. It is amazing that he has so many frenetic supporters. What a metric of the "low information voter".

Get out the vote on local levels. We need to take the Senate, and at least reduce the Republican count in the House. How nice it would be if we can galvanize all sorts of voters and get the House back as well.
 
 
+98 # Don Adams 2016-10-13 22:27
I am a Progressive that wanted Bernie Sanders, but lost out to Hillary. I must pick Hillary. Donald is just too scary.
 
 
+106 # Thomas Martin 2016-10-13 22:29
Ralph - I'm with you in criticizing the evil propagated by our government, but I don't agree with what you say about Garrison Keillor - to me he's saying that there's good in our people, and that includes Syrian refugees - if you don't share that view, what are you going to do? It does no good to simply destroy our government, without having something better to replace it with, and that's where we need to bring out, if we can, the goodness in people - Lake Wobegon people if you will.
 
 
-62 # lorenbliss 2016-10-13 23:43
@Thomas Martin: perhaps you are not old enough to remember it, but the entire "Prairie Home Companion" program was a malicious satire -- bitingly accurate, but malicious nevertheless -- on those flyover folk you call "Lake Wobegon people." (The name of the lake was pronounced "Woe-begone," as in "woebegone peasants.")

The program was also a devastating parody -- again very accurate -- on 1950s rural-U.S. midday radio, a real-time exemplar of which was "The Cas Walker Farm and Home Hour" on WNOX in Knoxville, Tennessee -- a place where thanks to a divorce decree I (involuntarily) spent entirely too many of my boyhood and teen years.

For that reason, I never cared much for Mr. Keillor nor for his perpetuation of USian class snobbery. Though never a Southern sympathizer, I thought it wrong to make a mockery of people who could no more help being what they were than a polio victim in an iron lung could help being deathly ill.

But now in his declaration ("The country is not in crisis. The government is not a disaster; it is a culture of process and law..."), Mr. Keillor reduces himself from the undeniably talented performer he was to just another of those latter-day Josef Goebbels wannabes who parrot Big Lies for the Hillary machine.

Which, given the anti-Working-Cl ass content of his satire, is maybe the fulfillment of a lifelong dream.
_________

CORRECTION: It was WROL radio, not WNOX; WNOX had Knoxville's other hillbilly music show.
 
 
+61 # Caliban 2016-10-14 00:33
Sorry about the divorce experience, #lorenbliss, but it's not really relevant to the wisdom of Keillor's observations.

There is no anti - worker intention behind GK's work - though there is certainly wry laughter at those who imagine there is.

I hereby join that laughter.
 
 
+31 # ericlipps 2016-10-14 04:58
"Joseph Goebbels wannabes"? Really?
 
 
+20 # Brice 2016-10-14 08:20
Well, that was a bit over the top don't you think LB?
 
 
+1 # Billsy 2016-10-14 13:31
Sad that you got so many thumbs down. Keillor lost me with that final paragraph as well. Indeed, the country is in grave crisis and our government nearly dysfunctional. Trump is a buffoon but the alternative is scarcely a breath of fresh air.
 
 
+3 # jazzman633 2016-10-14 15:22
Lake Wobegon -- where everyone is average.
 
 
+3 # marigayl 2016-10-14 16:56
Wrong! Everybody is above average. Perhaps you have never read Mr. Keillor, or never lived in Minnesota. He wrote, simply, as one of us.
 
 
0 # lfeuille 2016-10-14 17:24
Are you really saying that everyone in Minnesota is above average? Not too chauvinistic are you.
 
 
-1 # Ralph 2016-10-14 14:39
Nothing more than a good German celebrating the criminality and corruption of modern government. Much like Nazi Germany, our judicial system has become nothing more than a rubber stamp of legality on rampant criminality and corruption. It's unfortunate that you ignore the ugly reality.
 
 
+3 # John Escher 2016-10-15 00:58
Quoting Ralph:
Nothing more than a good German celebrating the criminality and corruption of modern government. Much like Nazi Germany, our judicial system has become nothing more than a rubber stamp of legality on rampant criminality and corruption. It's unfortunate that you ignore the ugly reality.


You and your dumbass "you," so vague that nobody ever knows whom you're talking about. Writing is thinking, Ralph, and you're bad at both.
 
 
+65 # nikolajM 2016-10-14 02:14
#Lorenbliss, you have no idea what you're taking about; or maybe you know that what you wrote about A Prairie Home Companion wasn't worth the back label of an old Powdermilk Biscuit box. A Prairie Home Companion lovingly depicted, with gentle and occasionally a bit less gentle humor, small town America, with its strengths and its foibles. Malicious anti-working class satire? It's all in your head, bub. Keillor came from a small town, and embraced small town life and people in all of his writing, even while poking fun with a wink and a nod, with his listeners always knowing that he was himself a good part of what he joked about. You are almost certainly the first person to accuse Garrison of being Goebbels-like, and in so doing you, not Garrison, mirror Goebbels with your big lie supporting the Biggest of All Lies that Drumpf is hoping someone listens to as he buries himself in paranoia and chauvinist vulgarity.
 
 
-39 # lorenbliss 2016-10-14 03:41
So now for an avowed Jill Stein supporter to criticize a retired radio satirist for brazenly lying* on behalf the wannabe conqueror of Russia and destroyer of the world is to support Trump?

My, my; the Hillarynoids show more of their totalitarian malevolence with every passing minute.
_________
*Yes, it is indeed brazen lying to claim, as Mr. Keillor does, "The country is not in crisis. The government is not a disaster; it is a culture of process and law..."
 
 
+6 # ericlipps 2016-10-14 05:00
Quoting lorenbliss:
So now for an avowed Jill Stein supporter to criticize a retired radio satirist for brazenly lying* on behalf the wannabe conqueror of Russia and destroyer of the world is to support Trump?

My, my; the Hillarynoids show more of their totalitarian malevolence with every passing minute.
_________
*Yes, it is indeed brazen lying to claim, as Mr. Keillor does, "The country is not in crisis. The government is not a disaster; it is a culture of process and law..."

Is it "totalitarian malevolence" to support Hillary?

How long will it be before someone posting here decides he'd save America if he went out and shot Hillary Clinton?
 
 
+1 # newell 2016-10-14 10:53
Some of these people need no such ideas. Their hatred of Hillary seems deeper than their hate of Hitler, Nixon, Reagan, W or Cheney. I really don't understand where this hatred comes from. Bernie was my choice and now I will vote for Stein, because climate change is the priority, but if I lived in a swing state, I would not only vote, but would also campaign for Hillary.
 
 
+5 # James38 2016-10-14 12:07
Saying you will vote for Stein is only partly excused by indicating you live in a State solidly behind Clinton. If you pay attention to Stein, you see that she is far from a coherent candidate, no matter that she does get a few things right.

But my major problem with all fringe candidates is that they are all playing with the same fire Nader played with, and that ended very badly for everyone.

Bernie showed how a "third party" or seriously progressive candidate needs to work. He spent years building his career in politics, remaining true to seriously progressive ideas all the time. So finally when he decided to run for President, he could mount a serious campaign IN THE PRIMARIES, and he damn near pulled it together. I wish we could have woken up enough folks to nominate him, but he is now, once again, showing us how it is done. He is supporting the only candidate who can defeat Trump, the only candidate who can credibly run the country (as much as a President can). Hillary is the only "sane" choice available.

Third Parties and candidates need to follow Bernie's lead. Build your base by running candidates on local, and State levels. Once you have a group of Governors, Representatives , and Senators, and have a chance to win in the Primaries, then make your move. Otherwise you are just playing with the dissatisfaction of progressives who waste their votes playing some sort of fantasy zero-win game when, again, Nader showed us why that is a bad idea.
 
 
+5 # JJS 2016-10-14 17:19
Stein should run for a local government position, gain some experience and presence, not go for the top right out of the gate.
 
 
0 # lfeuille 2016-10-14 17:36
This is true, but she serves perfectly well as a protest vote as she is.
 
 
+6 # JJS 2016-10-14 17:42
Hopefully a protest vote for Jill Stein won't give us another GW Bush.
 
 
+1 # James38 2016-10-14 20:42
Exactly, JJS. Fringe candidates with zero chance of winning anything, often with no serious qualifications for President, are not serious candidates. They are sucking money and votes out of the real contest, playacting at being a "Presidential" candidate, while encouraging some folks to indulge in the delusion that squandering a vote as a "protest" makes any sense at all. As Bernie is making it very clear, don't take chances. Support Hillary.

They all need to take note of the famous definition of Politics - "The Art of the Possible". Not the "playground of the impossible".

I could respect Stein or The Libertarian Noodlebrain if they were supporting Hillary, while producing substantive speeches and essays encouraging Hillary and the electorate to move toward more progressive policies.

Perhaps the best way they could do that is as
you said "Stein should run for a local government position, gain some experience and presence, not go for the top right out of the gate."

I find the fringe candidates annoying if not outright dangerous. I have called them "Naderites", but maybe there is a better name for them: "Beetlebaums" or is that "Feetlebaums"? Anyway, in the Spike Jones song, Beetlebaum won the race, which adds a nice note of absurd irony.
 
 
+1 # JJS 2016-10-15 17:10
I don't consider the "other" contenders for the presidency "not serious". Their concerns should be brought to the table and they should be heard. This should have happened with the debates earlier in the process after the parties have selected their candidate.
I do think you make good points about protest votes. I think that the vote for the presidency should come down to A or B. How to get there is up for debate and discussion.
 
 
0 # GreenBee 2016-10-16 20:56
James38, Are you aware that 12% of registered Democrats in Florida chose to vote for Bush over Gore? That is 200,000 voters. The number of Florida voters who voted for Nader is a small fraction of this number. So you can see that the assertion that Nader voters cost Gore the election is a myth. The Dems failed to get the vote out, they failed to put up a candidate that could inspire their own party members to elect him, they failed to elect strong local and state Democratic candidates who would not have pulled the dirty tricks that Jeb and Katherine Harris did, and they failed to communicate effectively with the voters.

Sadly many of these same criticisms apply to the present Democratic party in this election.
 
 
+1 # James38 2016-10-21 20:42
GreenBee, your attempt to make an end run around the fact that Nader tipped the election to Bush is clever, but fails.

What remains clear is that had Nader asked his supporters to vote for Gore, Gore would have won with no doubt at all.

It simply would not have taken many votes to make a Gore victory unquestionable.
 
 
0 # Brice 2016-10-23 01:08
-- It simply would not have taken many votes to make a Gore victory unquestionable.

Considering that the count was rigged more votes might not have helped at all. Gore won that election, but the Presidency was given to Bush by the Supreme Court.
 
 
0 # Cassandra2012 2016-10-15 16:57
Unreasoning paranoid misogyny exists on the left as well as the right....
 
 
-2 # Johnny 2016-10-14 12:15
[quote name="ericlipps"
How long will it be before someone posting here decides he'd save America if he went out and shot Hillary Clinton?]

Ericlipps, Hillary Clinton probably will start World War III. She has virtually promised as much. But you reduce your own moral level to hers with your proposal to shoot her.
 
 
-2 # lorenbliss 2016-10-14 13:28
Ericlipps, by his murderous suggestion, also plays directly into the hands of those who would brand any and all of Hillary's Leftist opponents as "terrorists" -- which (since he is obviously bright enough to know the implications of what he is doing), is most likely a revelation of why he is here.

(Such a person is called an "agent provocateur." His/her presence is a tactic pioneered by the Tsar's Okhrana and since used by every secret police agency on this planet.)

Which leads to another question: did such operatives infiltrate RSN on orders from without or -- given Mr. Ashe's fawning endorsement of Hillary and his increasingly despotic efforts on her behalf (as in his tolerance of the outrageous ericlipps suggestion in question) -- are these agents provocateur here at his invitation?
 
 
+1 # Ralph 2016-10-14 15:20
Doubtful anything as sinister as what you imply. Mr. Ashe, like tens of millions of USans has succumbed to the fear and intimidation of a fascist government gone hog wild.
 
 
+1 # Cassandra2012 2016-10-15 16:56
One of Trump's stormtroopers probably would be happy to! Hope the Secret Service is on their toes!
 
 
+29 # RaW 2016-10-14 06:40
The country in crisis?
Case against: stock market up, unemployment down, jobs up, car sales historically high, low energy costs, an educated, polite, integrated, revered, and loyal military...

Case for: Trump and his supporters calling for violence, NRA's power, police penchant for violence against blacks, rubes' penchant for violence against Muslims, oligarchs coddled, climate change denied, rights of women and LGBT under attack...

Which of the former does anyone think Trump will maintain or improve?

Which of the latter does anyone think Trump will fix?
 
 
+6 # lfeuille 2016-10-14 17:45
The stock market has been gaining and losing the same 800 points all year, but the state of the stock market is hardly indicative of the state of most Americans anyway.

The new jobs are lousy. There was an article in the Post today about budget cuts in Virginia because tax receipts were down because of the loss of high paying jobs even though total employment is up.

The referenced military is largely composed of those who can't find jobs in the private sector. A significant minority is either sociopathic to start with or becomes dangerous to society on their return because of PTSD. POLITE? Not when they commit war crimes.
 
 
+2 # lfeuille 2016-10-14 17:34
Yes, it is a lie or a serious distortion of perspective. There may be no crisis visible to HIM because he is in comfortable retirement due to his years as a radio host and sees no need to look beyond himself. The disaster of government does not personally effect HIM. Of course Trump is 100% wrong as to the nature of said crisis and disaster, but they are very real.
 
 
+41 # vt143 2016-10-14 04:59
"The country is not in crisis"

Oh, it is...by the very fact that Donald Trump has gotten ANY traction. This is a bizarre and unending nightmare.

"It would have been better if, instead of running for president and wasting everyone’s time, he’d just sat down and written a novel. "

But he can't write! By his own admission he doesn't even READ.

He could be a court jester. And after his first day he would be carted away. That's what we need.
 
 
-17 # Archbishop Harrumph 2016-10-14 06:00
The country is not in crisis?

With all due respect, Mr. Keillor, you might want to get off the prairie every now and then and take a look around.
 
 
-13 # RMDC 2016-10-14 07:58
I still don't understand why people like Keilor is so happy about sending the most corrupt political machine since the late 1800s into Washington and the White House. The Clintons are operatives of a global corruption ring that includes foundations, governments, CIA, and very many politicians.

Anything is better than this. The only consolation is that this is how all empires die. The scallawags, thieves, sordid hucksters, whore masters, and degnerates descend on the offices of the central government and eat them out from the inside. Good-bye America. Your doom is sealed. The thieves are about to take it up to the top notch.
 
 
+2 # John Escher 2016-10-14 10:41
Quoting RMDC:
I still don't understand why people like Keilor is so happy about sending the most corrupt political machine since the late 1800s into Washington and the White House. The Clintons are operatives of a global corruption ring that includes foundations, governments, CIA, and very many politicians.

Anything is better than this. The only consolation is that this is how all empires die. The scallawags, thieves, sordid hucksters, whore masters, and degnerates descend on the offices of the central government and eat them out from the inside. Good-bye America. Your doom is sealed. The thieves are about to take it up to the top notch.


You have no idea, RMDC, what the presidency of Hillary Clinton is going to be like. You think you know-- mistake.

Could it be that you haven't read enough novels, seen enough films? Whatever is anticipated turns out to be dead wrong every time.

Now of course the logical result of your incessant rant (don't you ever tire of it?) would be exception to the rule: Trump as president with end of the world for sure.
 
 
+2 # Cassandra2012 2016-10-15 17:00
"Anything" huh? Even a narcissistic authoritarian misogynistic, bigoted, racist delusional know-noth8ing bully like Der Drumpf?
 
 
+8 # Brice 2016-10-14 08:18
Oh gee whiz, shouldn't we all be so proud (sarcasm) that now that it is safe to attack Donald Trump we see the massive celebrity pile-on. What happened to doing the right thing at the right time? I guess later is better than never, but what if we have problems such that later is too late?
 
 
+6 # John Escher 2016-10-14 10:44
Quoting Brice:
Oh gee whiz, shouldn't we all be so proud (sarcasm) that now that it is safe to attack Donald Trump we see the massive celebrity pile-on. What happened to doing the right thing at the right time? I guess later is better than never, but what if we have problems such that later is too late?


You must learn to be a better team player, Brice. While what you point out is correct, your energy in divining this lesser truth is misspent. All of your energy should go to squishing the bastard that is Donald Trump no matter the day, the month, and the weather.
 
 
+2 # James38 2016-10-14 12:13
"All of your energy should go to squishing the bastard that is Donald Trump no matter the day, the month, and the weather."

Nice. Very funny. And you are ever so correct.
 
 
-2 # Brice 2016-10-14 14:19
If you really believed that, then you should get busy on this site arguing and dissuading the tons of people who call themselves Progressives and yet will not be voting for Hillary this election instead of scolding me for something that is already done and I am not going to listen to you about anyway! Fair enough? ;-)
 
 
+2 # James38 2016-10-14 21:08
No real Progressive, assuming that being a "real Progressive" means you can think clearly, will fail to follow Bernie's lead and support Hillary.

The folks who are putting their petulant foot-stomping tantrum ahead of practical reality are not progressives. They are puritanical children.

Kindly consider the clear idea, "Politics is the Art of the Possible". In this election it is possible to avoid electing the crumbling train-wreck Trump by supporting Hillary. Nothing else makes any sense at all, and that does not mean we should quit supporting Bernie and his truly progressive ideas.

Bernie, Elisabeth Warren, Al Franken, and several other progressive members of Congress are all working to elect Hillary. Pay attention. Don't waste your vote being impractical or silly.

It was just that sort of impractical silliness that allowed Nader to mislead enough voters so they threw the election to Bush.
 
 
+2 # lfeuille 2016-10-15 20:28
"No real Progressive, assuming that being a "real Progressive" means you can think clearly, will fail to follow Bernie's lead and support Hillary."

In the words of the new Nobel laureate::

"Don't follow leaders
Watch the parking meters"
 
 
+1 # James38 2016-10-21 20:47
Nice quote. Always liked that one. But relevant to what?

Does not following leaders mean we should all wander around like a bunch of lemmings that got lost in a swamp on the way to the cliff?

Maybe "Don't follow leaders" means "think for yourself". Some leaders, like Bernie, think a lot like I do. If I "follow" Bernie, I am following my own best judgement.

I am ok with that.
 
 
-5 # John Escher 2016-10-15 01:02
Quoting Brice:
If you really believed that, then you should get busy on this site arguing and dissuading the tons of people who call themselves Progressives and yet will not be voting for Hillary this election instead of scolding me for something that is already done and I am not going to listen to you about anyway! Fair enough? ;-)


If I really believed what? Get a grip.
 
 
+2 # elizabethblock 2016-10-14 13:48
Thanks for printing this!
Garrison Keillor is brilliant at light verse. As an occasional practitioner of the genre, I know a master.
I'll try to find a tune to fit this so I can sing it.
 
 
+4 # moby doug 2016-10-14 13:51
Why are all these moronic, mendacious, rabid, rightwing flamers on THIS site? Is it because they find their own rightwing spinsites unreadable & numbing?
 
 
+1 # lorenbliss 2016-10-14 13:52
Apropos my use of the phrase "totalitarian malevolence," challenged by Hillaryites above:

I have not seen such vindictively dishonest hatefulness by a candidate's supporters since the era of Joe McCarthy and the Great Purge (which actually began the minute World War II ended). Indeed its shrill malice has become the defining characteristic of the entire Hillaryite machine.

Hence my (very deliberate) choice of words: "totalitarian malevolence" -- the McCarthyite practice of hurling any false accusation, any insult or bogus threat, no matter how damaging it might be -- is precisely what, thanks to Hillary, again obtains.

And mark my word -- this particular beast, again uncaged in the name of ideological oppression -- will run amok long after the election is ended, not the least because there is no Ed Murrow to trap and contain it.
 
 
+3 # Brice 2016-10-14 14:23
-- I have not seen such vindictively dishonest hatefulness
-- by a candidate's supporters since the era of Joe
-- McCarthy and the Great Purge (which actually began
-- the minute World War II ended). Indeed its shrill malice
-- has become the defining characteristic of the entire
-- Hillaryite machine.
-- -lorenbliss

Well, I am forced to agree with you, but with a big BUT ...

Your "Hillaryite" machine might be bad, but there is a logic
and purpose behind it that has ostensibly declared itself
for Bernie's platform, whether true, partially true or false.

So, I'd have to say that the other side who either suggests
voting for Trump or casting your vote for someone who
will make their vote irrelevant is worse - based on concrete
objective desired outcomes.

Can you explain why you would disagree with that?
 
 
-1 # Ralph 2016-10-14 20:17
There is no Sanders platform. He has prostrated himself to a war criminal and said the standard Nazi line, no looking back, just forward into the abyss.

Voting for criminals, Dem or Repub is something that can not be justified. Only the most brainwashed and corrupted in our society advocate voting for evil. Good luck. What goes around comes around.
 
 
-1 # Brice 2016-10-14 20:44
Ralph, you seems to desperately need some universal mental health care ... hang on.
 
 
-2 # Ralph 2016-10-14 20:47
You seem hopelessly brainwashed and delusional. Good luck with your endless war and criminality. What goes around, comes around.
 
 
+3 # John Escher 2016-10-15 01:06
Quoting Ralph:
You seem hopelessly brainwashed and delusional. Good luck with your endless war and criminality. What goes around, comes around.


Who you talking to, Ralphie. Writing and thinking starts with who, where, when, what. Whom comes later.
 
 
+3 # James38 2016-10-14 21:24
Well Put, Brice! Look for my other posts. We are trying to get the same message out there.

"...the other side who either suggests
voting for Trump or casting your vote for someone who will make their vote irrelevant is worse - based on concrete objective desired outcomes."

Yes. Very important.
 
 
+3 # Ralph 2016-10-14 14:36
It's beyond depressing watching US citizens defend a murderous and corrupt government. These are bad times and getting worse.
 
 
0 # James38 2016-10-14 21:11
Loren, bitterness is probably not the end result of clear thinking.
 
 
-3 # Ralph 2016-10-14 21:37
Mocking references to mental illness is the MO of DNC and GOP trolls. Beat it clown. You're disgusting beyond words.
 
 
+2 # John Escher 2016-10-15 01:08
Quoting Ralph:
Mocking references to mental illness is the MO of DNC and GOP trolls. Beat it clown. You're disgusting beyond words.


Which person would that be? D- (worse than an F).
 
 
+2 # lfeuille 2016-10-14 18:04
To everyone still hyperventilatin g about us "throwing our votes away" or "voting for Trump by not voting for Clinton": give it up. Trump is dead in the water. He will not be president no matter how we vote. The problem now is trimming Clinton's margin of victory so she will not assume she has a mandate for endless war. So, vote for Stein, vote for Johnson, write in Bernie or vote for your favorite cartoon character or super-hero. Go for it. Anyone but Clinton or Trump.
 
 
-3 # Ralph 2016-10-14 18:33
So if the polls narrow prior to the election, you'll be heading to the polls to pull the lever for the war criminal Clinton? The immoral turpitude of the USan public knows no bounds. Grow a spine.
 
 
+1 # James38 2016-10-14 21:20
Congratulations , Ralph, you have become annoying. Spine? You should try growing a brain.
 
 
+2 # lfeuille 2016-10-15 20:36
I have said hundred's of times I am not voting for her, regardless. But get real, it's over. He cannot win. So enough with the "a vote for Stein or Whoever is a vote for Trump" crap.

You just want to pick a fight. I have plenty of spine. You don't have much sense.
 
 
+1 # James38 2016-10-14 21:18
That is bad advice. You are playing with the same fire that Nader was obsessed with, and we all got burned by that mistake.

Yes, it looks like Trump loses, but there is nothing to be gained by throwing away your vote. The Trumpian trumpet sounds too enticing to the legions of lemmings known as "low information voters". They are dangerous to themselves and the Nation.

Don't do anything to increase the chances for a random disaster. Instead of fearing handing Clinton too big a victory, think of it as solidly rebuking the Republican Party for foisting this farce onto us.

Vote in droves for local candidates for the Congress. Get your friends out to vote. We need a landslide that will hopefully win both the Senate and the House.
 
 
-6 # Ralph 2016-10-14 21:32
How much is the Clinton PAC paying you to post Jimmy? Last I read, 38 cents a post. You must be rolling in the dough. You are nothing more than a worthless criminal. Take your 38 cents of silver to the bank, political Judas. You are a disgrace and should be ashamed of yourself.
 
 
+3 # John Escher 2016-10-15 01:17
Quoting Ralph:
How much is the Clinton PAC paying you to post Jimmy? Last I read, 38 cents a post. You must be rolling in the dough. You are nothing more than a worthless criminal. Take your 38 cents of silver to the bank, political Judas. You are a disgrace and should be ashamed of yourself.


Well, you at least named the person you were talking about this time, Ralph! A clear improvement. Keep on keep on and you'll move up to a D from your usual D- .

But this phrase needs special attention: "You are a disgrace..."
A "disgrace!?" Where did you get that word? Oh, I know! It's Donald Trump's favorite word.

Does use of the word "disgrace" mean you're a Trump supporter, Ralph? So sorry if I got it wrong. I can't remember whom you support. Or where you're coming from on any subject. You see, you just don't communicate well. The only thing I can say for sure is that you always are unpleasant.
 
 
+1 # lfeuille 2016-10-15 20:40
It is more important to trim Hillary's margin of victory than to guard against the less than 1% chance that Trump would win. He is toast. She is just as dangerous. We cannot stop her winning at this point. All we can do is try to prevent a landslide.
 
 
0 # James38 2016-10-21 20:55
Ifeuille, "All we can do is try to prevent a landslide."

We?

Not me. I can do lots of things that are actually important, including voting for Hillary.
 
 
0 # tarantilla 2016-10-16 22:23
The Ralph God is proclaiming truth. Listen to Him. What goes around comes around, and what comes around goes around, and vice versa. There is much wisdom in these lines. They must be read and interpreted and reinterpreted many times to get the truth. The Ralph knows, Listen unto Him.
 

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