Friday, July 22, 2016

Up on the High Wire


Clinton and Trump, on the high wire,
Once side's ice and one is fire,
Putting on a show for you and me.

by Gaius Publius

I'm preparing for a month-long haitus (vacation, finally), and while I'll be reading the news I won't be commenting on it. Ahead of that, I'd like to offer these thoughts.

1. Our "Look Ahead" series will continue as the fall campaign kicks off. The outcome of the election, though, is very hard to predict. Each campaign seems determined to drive its own car into the ditch. Last car with wheels on the road will win this one. Plus there's those ever-present black swans, like this one.

As to what happens after the election, it gets more predictable. Whoever ultimately wins, we'll know enough in the fall to know nearly every player's fate for the next few years — Trump, Clinton, the progressive-hating Democratic leadership, the Koch-bossed Republican Party, Sanders-supporting progressives themselves; all of their Tarot cards will be laid out for reading, up to the moment when the climate throws its own card into the mix. We just have to be willing to look at what those cards say.

If you're interested, the parts so far of the Look Ahead series are these:

2. Clinton is looking more and more vulnerable, according to the latest Economist / YouGov poll (pdf). Whatever you think of the outcome of the Trump-Clinton contest, so far no one has a real lead, and both are playing a high-risk game of High Wire, a tightrope act without a net.

Surprising Poll Results

The following look at some of the poll results comes from poster Vraye_Foi at the Reddit site r/Kossacks_for_Sanders. The poll itself is long and worth a further look, if you're so inclined. My thanks for this summary of just a a few of its findings (my emphasis except where noted):
Pages 12 and 13 of the report [the "enthusiasm" pages] are full of interesting data, some of which I'll highlight -
  • 25% of Democrats are either Dissatisfied or Upset [Clinton] is the Democrat candidate for President
  • 62% of Independents are either Dissatisfied or Upset that she is the Democrat candidate for President
  • 43% of those polled across the board (includes all demographics and party affiliations) are "Upset" that she is the Democrat candidate for President
When it comes to Independents' view of Donald Trump, only 44% are Dissatisfied or Upset that he is the Republican nominee.

Enthusiastic Support for Trump within his party is at 51%. Hillary's Enthusiastic support within her party: 34%. 
The choices for this question are: Enthusiastic, Satisfied, Dissatisfied, Upset, Not Sure. The wording of the most extreme categories is Enthusiastic and Upset. So Trump starts the pre-convention head-to-head campaigning with more enthusiasm within his party and also with independents than Clinton does, by a lot if the poll is right.

When looking at support among women:
And continuing on the theme of "Enthusiastic Support", how about this surprise:
  • 18% of female respondents are Enthusiastic for Trump
  • 19% of female respondents are Enthusiastic for Clinton
So just an aside and speaking as a woman here, can the HRC campaign cut the shit bout how it's sexist if you don't support or vote for Hillary? Please? Because this poll shows that women are about as enthusiastic and thrilled about Hillary as they are about Trump. ...

On the negative side, when it comes to Hillary being the Democrats' candidate, 12% of the women polled feel "Dissatisfied but not Upset" and 42% are UPSET.

It must be troubling news for the HRC campaign to see Enthusiastic/Satisfied combined numbers (45%) linger behind the Dissatisfied/Upset numbers (54%). A lot of women are not happy that Clinton is the nominee.
We're not saying that situation is right or wrong, just that it is. Now about enthusiasm by age (emphasis in original):
The other shocker is that 49% of respondents age 45 - 64 are "Upset" she is the Dem's candidate. But wait - it gets even more shocking: 53% of respondents over the age of 65 responded "Upset" as well.

Hasn't the narrative been that HRC has solid support from the over 45s and women? This poll raises some questions about that. Just as with the women respondents, the 45 and older crowd's negative sentiments towards HRC's candidacy are HIGHER than the positive ones.
That "over 65" polling number is across all genders and party identifications, but so is the general election.

Gary Johnson and Jill Stein

There's Johnson and Stein polling in the report as well. The reddit poster quoted above notes this (regarding data on pages 21 and 23):
General Election | Johnson Preference

Would you say you are mostly voting FOR Gary Johnson, AGAINST Hillary Clinton or AGAINST Donald Trump? Asked of those who would vote for Gary Johnson
  • I’m mostly voting FOR Gary Johnson 38%
  • I’m mostly voting AGAINST Hillary Clinton 37%
  • I’m mostly voting AGAINST Donald Trump 23%
  • Not sure 2%
General Election | Stein Preference

Would you say you are mostly voting FOR Jill Stein, AGAINST Hillary Clinton or AGAINST Donald Trump? Asked of those who would vote for Jill Stein
  • I’m mostly voting FOR Jill Stein 36%
  • I’m mostly voting AGAINST Hillary Clinton 42%
  • I’m mostly voting AGAINST Donald Trump 8%
  • Not sure 13%
Page 25 of the poll gives data in general on whether people are voting For a given candidate or Against a given candidate. Those general results are mainly a wash. The split in voting for vs. against Clinton is 28%–23%. The same split for Trump is 23%–20%, with 2% each saying they're voting FOR Johnson or Stein.

But it's the Against Clinton number in the Johnson and Stein polling that should cause worry in the Democratic camp. The Johnson+Stein combined Against Clinton total, as shown above, is 79%. The Johnson+Stein combined Against Trump total is just 31%. In other words, prospective Libertarian+Green voters, as a group, are much more strongly against Clinton than against Donald Trump, at least prior to the start of the fall campaign.

Pages 27–30 are also interesting. The question is, "Would you consider voting for [Clinton/Trump/Johnson/Stein]?" Possible responses are Might, Would Never, Not Sure, with overall totals and cross-tabulated breakdowns by gender, age, and so on. The Might vs. Would Never breakdown for Clinton among Democratic primary voters who prefer Sanders is 59%–38%. The same breakdown  for this group (Democratic primary voters who prefer Sanders) for Johnson is 45%–28%, and for Stein is 44%–20%.

To put that more simply, 38% of Sanders supporters would never vote for Clinton. Where would they go? An even split — 45% would vote for Johnson and 44% would vote for Stein.

Independents Still Control this Election

It looks like it's still true, that this year's "radical independents," people who were attracted to Trump and/or Sanders as a way to raise a "pronounced middle finger" to the powers that be (Norman Solomon's phrase in a slightly different context), are likely to decide this election. They may not know who they're for, but they're pretty sure who, or what, they're against. For far too many voters, there is no good outcome.

 "Le Pendu," the one left hanging, suspended in time and awaiting the outcome (source).

Enjoy the rest of the summer. I'll be back with more in a month.


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At 10:46 AM, Blogger jvb2718 said...

interesting polling.

Count me among those that are LIVID that the party of FDR and JFK would nominate that piece of shit instead of shun her.

But they you have to realize and come to grips with the FACT that her husband was and is the driving force behind the utter and complete corruption of the party of FDR and JFK... and that the policies of the money are now and shall ever be the policies of the party of FDR and JFK.

This I find even more disgusting than the party of Lincoln nominating each of their dipshit candidates since at least 1964 (before that I was either not born or too young to know). And 7 of 13, so far, got fucking ELECTED.

When Lincoln freed the slaves, it made every voting person in the south a Democrat. When LBJ courageously pushed and signed the voting rights and equal rights bills, the vast majority of WHITE southern voters became Republicans.

Now the Democrat party is the Republican party of the '50s and '60s (fundamentally greedy and petrified of Russia). And today's Republican party is veering into National Socialism territory as they promise despotism for safety and float scapegoat trial balloons (islam, LGBTQ, Mexicans...) to see which one will stick like Hitler's and Streicher's anti-Semitism of the '30s.

The R candidate is an intellectual dwarf, emotional 5-year-old and the worst kind of malignant narcissist sociopath.

Each and every person enthusiastic or even ambivalent FOR that waste of flesh is pure evil and/or a complete moron. There are no other possibilities. You can be mad as hell but you still cannot support another Mussolini or Hitler or Stalin, but dumber.

Anyone enthusiastic or ambivalent FOR $hillbillary is a fucking imbecile, though you may not be pure evil. There really is no other possibility. $hillbillary has a 52-year public record to peruse. And even a cursory scanning of it will tell you that $he is pure evil... a paragon of anti-virtue; a neocon neoliberal warmongering corrupt lying sack of shit if there ever was one.

Even Hitler put Germans back to work as he plotted his conquest of Europe and Asia and the genocide of the Jews. And he was kind to his dog and mistress. But... still...

Bernie would be a good write-in, except he utterly betrayed his entire "movement/revolution". It's looking now like he acted as the D sheepdog to herd progressives back to the doomed flock. I cannot see wasting a vote on that pos.

Johnson is charming, but the libertarian viewpoint is fundamentally anarchist when it comes to all but social policy. He should not be an option.

Jill Stein is a little too much a purist on some things, but is a far better person and choice than we've seen from either D or R since FDR (yes, better than HST, JFK and LBJ too, as far as policy advocacy). Except for the brand "not viable", she is the no-brainer choice. NO_FUCKING_BRAINER.

Come November I will watch again as maybe 120M imbeciles choose our next and possibly last ever president (of, by and for the big money) and I will not lament my vote for Stein (again) nor the imminent demise of a nation of SOOOOOOOOO much wasted potential.

Soon after whatever form that implosion will take will be the collapse of all humanity as climate change wreaks havoc with our supplies of water and food. Of course, humanity itself is causing and compounding climate change, shall never address it and will ultimately pay the price.

If I live that long, I won't lament the passing of a species with soooooo much wasted potential either.

We destroy and fuck up everything we touch.

At 7:51 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

As things develop, sometimes in chaotic fashion (drumpf's gaffe-fest, but with zero consequence), and also very predictable ($hillbillary's total lack of charisma and telling so many new lies it is pointless to even listen any more).

Some random thoughts:

I mean, drumpf has never been an option for anyone not damaged in some major way. But $hillbillary and now kaine lie to us by flipping on TPP (and TTIP and all others to come)? How many voters lefties are stupid enough to believe that horseshit? I mean, 25 years of being FOR FTAs and now suddenly they are against?

With the WIKI releases we now have proof that the DNC rigged the primary. Hopefully more to come. But I've seen enough. How many are like me?

Bernie CLAIMS he is continuing the "revolution" from inside the machine... but that is not possible. He's been inside the machine since BEFORE it became a totally corrupt money-whoring cathouse... and it became a totally corrupt money-whoring cathouse anyway. What, did Bernie's hard work from inside make the corruption a little slower? Maybe his entire career has been spent as the left's sheepdog.

Bernie's COULD have kept a revolution moving by shunning the corrupt DNC. He didn't have to run as a third. He could have just urged his people to support Jill Stein and help the Greens build some down-ballot momentum across the country. But he decided it was better to sell us the same olde shit and use the fear of drumpf as the rationalization. He's dead to me now.

The same can be said of Elizabeth Warren, who I believed SHOULD have been the first Woman president. One who espouses her principles wrt finance, especially as vehemently as she pretended to be, CANNOT EVER support or endorse or campaign for the lying neoliberal neocon utterly corrupt warmongering pile of fetid feces that the money nominated. The fact that she IS means that Warren is just another left-talking judas goat for idiot lefty voters to follow into the slaughter house. She's dead to me too.

On "Real Time" Cornell West made a good case for keeping the movement going with activism... and another lefty judas goat, Barny Frank, made his plea that one can only "fix" the corruption by doing so from within the corruption. Nobody ever mentions that Dodd and Frank were chairmen of their respective banking oversight committees for most of the time during which they created the fraud schemes that cratered the economy in 2008... and neither did shit to prevent it. Nobody asks them why their seminal "Dodd-Frank" wasn't actually, you know, useful in eliminating fraud in finance. Hint: how much bribe (campaign contribution) money did both get from finance during their congressional tenure? A LOT! that's how much.

How many will actually vote R and D this time? In 2012 it was about 120M.

It will be telling about the (lack of) intellect, mean-spiritedness and emotional retardation in the electorate. Everyone casting a D or R vote for prez are imbeciles or Nazi-level hateful. If the D/R turnout is similar to 2012, it'll prove that nothing will ever change until the money decides to do away with the charade of elections altogether.

Cornell West SAID (I have no idea if it's true) that Jill Stein is now polling at 9%, which would be unexpected good news. If she can get to 15%, she SHOULD be included in "debates"... but whoever decides which polls matter is key here. A lot of polls will puke up the numbers they are paid to.

I'm voting for Stein again. But if the results (and who COUNTS votes, anyway??) are similar... I'll be casting my LAST ever vote.


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