As we roll through a summer like no other in an election year like no other when the uniquely awful attributes of the uniquely awful American system make the least-experienced, least appropriate by temperament and intellect and just plain worst President (by far) in American history still potentially viable for reelection (and God knows the American media which created him in the first place is still desperate to prop him up to create their "horse race narrative") some dismal science is starting to emerge, such as the likelihood that Democratic candidates actually disproportionately benefit from voting by mail.
This simple metric, if accepted in Republican circles, begins to explain a whole lot of other dismal things. Starting with the President's (demonstrably false) railings that mail-in elections are somehow more likely to be fraudulent. Indeed, some of the claims are as hilariously absurd as they are colorful, such as "foreign printing of ballots." As usual, when it comes to destroying this country and moving us on the road to failed-state, the President shows us that in that area, he is as much about action as talk, as after first threatening to destroy the postal service from without, now via personnel being destiny, he moves to destroy it from within. Nothing like destroying one of the oldest and most widely distributed public services, one that disproportionately benefits those rural voters that Republicans supposedly court.
And just to be sure that enough states don't get too uppity about their own mail-in voting plans in case Trump can't kill off the post office in time, the good old U.S. Supreme Court will do what it can to make sure that there isn't any right to vote... especially by mail!
After the George Floyd street execution in Minneapolis led to nation-wide protests, it finally dawned on Team Trump that this would be an excellent time to deploy "Operation Legend": actual paramilitary kidnappers on the streets of American cities! It's brazenly unconstitutional, but good luck stopping it (see above re: Supreme Court!) Can always have too much civil unrest to carry out the election-- or just kidnap the voters!
Now hilariously, if it were funny, the actual pandemic is getting worse, as the U.S. crosses 4 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 and nearly 145,000 deaths, well over twice as many Americans who did in the Vietnam war. But the real problem is that the cases and deaths are starting to accelerate. The three day moving average is well above 70,000 new cases (with just four states, albeit three being really big, California, Texas, Florida and Arizona leading the way).
Fortunately for Mr. Trump, he passed a dementia test (so he says), and of course, he wore a mask and suggested that others do it so, you know, this is the day Donald Trump finally became President, according to the usual useful idiots. Why with that kind of a mandate, let's just send the kids back to school-- don't let science get in the way!
Setting aside the raging plague and social unrest for a minute (as well as the scandal of the impeachment "trial" just six months ago that seems like decades), what about "it's the economy stupid?" Well let's see... over 30 million workers, or roughly one in five, are now collecting unemployment benefits. And since the COVID-45 (yes I meant that) plague and pandemic got started, over 50 million people have lost their jobs and filed for unemployment. Meanwhile, nearly half of all retail business rents weren't paid in April and May. And now as various state eviction moratoria begin to expire, at least as of May, about 22% of residential tenants weren't paying their rent. This is what happens when quarterly GDP declines by nearly 35%, an inconceivable and literally "off the chart" figure.
But the capitalism show must go on, so even though you may be precluded from making a living by virtue of the pandemic and governmental fiat, no such fiat will excuse you from the wonderous obligations of rent and other bills that accrue while you are unable to earn income. America. Fuck. Yeah.
Somewhere in there was a little scandal about our Russian friends paying Afghan Taliban bounties to kill American military personnel, the President being duly briefed, and as expected, doing absolutely nothing.
Anyway, you add up all these factors and you wonder, why would the Republican Party run a demented man with such a heinously bad record as their standard-bearer? And you would do so naively, because of course, the plan is to let the virus and the economic downturn spin out of control so badly, while destroying the postal system and any ability to vote by mail, so that only people who aren't very bright (that would be Republican voters) are totally cocksure that neither the plague nor the civil unrest will be a danger to them (that would also be Republican voters) WILL VOTE AT ALL. Meanwhile, everyone with a brain cowers at home in fear, praying for their next Insta-cart delivery, while Trump squeaks out a victory with a record-low turnout. BWA HA HA HA!
Certainly no Hollywood studio would green-light such an idiotic plot. But the same could have been said of Mr. Trump's 2016 "victory."
As an aside, if you want to hear what I actually sound like (albeit in my "Donald J. Putin" persona... ok, ok... still me)... check out this edition of the C-Realm Podcast called "Exceptionally Sucky," a reference to my book, "Donald J. Putin on American Exceptionalism." I have been listening to host KMO for over 10 years, and IMHO, he is actually the best podcaster out there (so I can't tell you how delighted I was to finally be in the interviewee chair.)