Third parties

I never told anybody not from a battleground state not to vote for a third party. If it didn’t matter in the end, vote how you truly feel. But I suppose a few Johnson and Stein voters in Florida, Ohio, Wisconsin and Michigan are now having second thoughts. But I dunno….most people who voted Green absolutely believed in voting Green. It’s not like they decided to vote Green in the last week. And most of her following had already held their noses and voted for Hillary, as shown when Stein’s numbers plummeted after the Democratic convention. And I am not sure how many Libertarian voters would ever vote Democrat. Some, sure, but many–most?–were Republicans.

It’s not like 2000 when Nader went into Florida the last two weeks in a big way, telling people why Gore was awful and why to vote for him instead. Crazy Ralph knew damn well what he was doing. He increased his share of the voters by taking them from Gore, and in Florida, which everyone knew was Bush’s only hope to win the presidency. People pleaded with Nader to go elsewhere, but no, he was determined to undermine Gore in Florida. He seemed hellbent on a Bush win for reasons beyond my understanding. Nader was the next best thing to a paid surrogate Bush ever had, an unexpected dream come true. I have never figured out that one at all. Nader denies all that now of course, and gets his rumpled cheap suit all out of shape when someone mentions it. And his followers were the first to jump on the bandwagon when the Supreme Court gave the state to Bush. The raged the loudest, yelling at us Democrats for not screaming loud enough. I wanted to slap them. Neither Gary Johnson nor Jill Stein acted in the same deliberate manner this year to elect a Republican. Well, Stein may have tried a bit–she sounded like she endorsed Trump once, even–but she was no Ralph Nader. Ralph sold out the Madison Square Garden the week before the 2000 election, his clueless if charmingly idealist fans screaming like he was Bruce Springsteen gonna save the world. Jill Stein? No.

Still, had a mess of Green and Libertarian voters switched to Hillary we’d be in a better world now. But oh well. It’s that goddam democracy kicking us in the ass again. So much easier it must be to live in Putin World, where we all know the results ahead of time.

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Cuba libre

Alpha 66 is not happy.

Alpha 66 is not happy.

The U.S. embargo of Cuba is pretty inexplicable. We have close relations with Viet Nam. We may have more direct connections with North Korea than we do with Cuba. Why have we continued this ridiculous embargo and non-recognition so long? Fidel tossed Batista (and the Mob) out in 1959. That was 55 years ago.

Because of Florida, that’s why. Specifically because of Florida on two days every four years. One of those days is the Republican presidential primary. The other is the day we vote for president. By an accident of political geography, it’s been impossible for a presidential candidate to say that as president he would lift the embargo and exchange ambassadors with Cuba without committing political suicide. Continue reading