The Sorest Loser
This week Trump added to his narrative a passive-aggressive (albeit, character-consistent) non-committal to honoring the election results. Between that and the whole rigged election meme in the prior weeks, I think he may fantasize a grassroots coup by his supporters, if the election doesn’t go his way.
The scenario goes something like this: All the Trumpers and Trumpettes will rally together into a massive human wave attack (aka, zombie rush or riot) which will move on Washington DC. The precincts will realize the rightness of Trump’s authority and join in. Loyalist police forces (and the National Guard, and the USMC) will all be overwhelmed by the immensity and glory of the Trump-mass, eventually getting overwhelmed and routed. Washington DC will ultimately fall to the might of The Trump-People’s will. Once the three branches of government are subdued, the People of Trump shall, in a unified voice, ask The Donald to come Make America Great Again. And he will will step up and assume leadership as Unquestionable Lord and Master of the World. Or at least Unquestionable Lord and Master of America. It will be Trump’s Day. It will become a new national Holiday where we all hail Trump and sing Trump songs.
I doubt it will go that way, even in part. I do expect there may be some drunken violent outbursts by disgruntled Trump supporters, maybe even a tragic rampage shooting. Someone may take a potshot at Clinton, at Obama or even at Trump himself (because crazy gunmen are that unpredictable). But I don’t imagine local responders will be overwhelmed anywhere.
I’m reminded of the 2000 election and the Florida Recount which ultimately got stopped by an intervention by SCOTUS (which was clearly political, and a favor to George H. W. Bush.) Gore had a fairly legitimate claim to the presidency. Those of us who supported Gore (or, more fervently, were terrified of George W. Bush) discovered that after the recount halt there was nothing we could do. Our nation doesn’t have provisions for retroactive electoral changes even if blatant voter fraud is discovered. So we grumbled a lot and did an amazing amount of nothing violent at all. If Bush was in the least bit insecure about his position as presidency, he didn’t show it. He completely dumped his compassionate conservative moderate veneer, rolled back decades of environmental and consumer protection regulations and legal de-sectarianization (That is to say channeling human welfare and small business grant funds instead to large church subsidies on the pretense that they’ll effectively disseminate the money to the needy.) Then he completely affirmed his puppet status to Cheney, Halliburton and the US military industrial complex, also introducing the nation to unconstitutional wiretaps, torture without due process, war on false pretenses and signing statements to assure he only has to enforce laws on his term that he feels like.
All we non-Bush supporters did was whimper, and the whole world whimpered with us.
Regarding Trump’s resistance to accept the election, I predict someone else will make the call and deliver the concession speech while he goes Kylo Ren in the ready lounge. And it wouldn’t be the first time a candidate couldn’t manage. Gerald Ford lost his voice campaigning, so Betty had to deliver his concession speech after Carter won.
A Face Thing
I write this as if a Clinton victory is certain. I think it’s very likely, but I have enough doubts to breathe a sigh of relief once her elect status is assured. A Trump presidency future feels like a terrible alternative reality, like the Rich-Biff-Tannen alternative-timeline in Back to the Future Part II. (Amusingly when I was writing this, it was on the one-year anniversary of BTTFP2 Hoverboard-future, specifically October 21, 2015, but not the Rich-Biff-Tannen 1985 present.) If I discover Trump is president, I’ll be watching out for commonplace passenger dirigibles and minarets, a United States of not fifty states, or The Purge as a national event.
The Biff Tannen / Donald Trump comparison wasn’t lost on the internet, but comparing Trump to Biff is like comparing Trump to Hitler, it’s too easy to do and it’s probably prudent not to take it too seriously. Though to be fair Trump and Hitler share a terrifying amount of cross-section, possibly including the hopes of a victory by coup d’état.
Dan Castellaneta voiced Trump quotes as Homer Simpson, so the comparison of Trump to Homer Simpson has become really easy, as if Homer (and not Ned Flanders) became the Unquestionable Lord and Master of the World in the first Time and Punishment alternate future. Again with the Zeppelins and Minerets
Most frightening, though is a certain unpinnable characteristic, a certain je ne sais quoi (and not of the charming sexy sort) that is common between Trump, Bill O’Reilly and my Non-Colorado-Uncle Relative, an intersection which includes narcissism, egocentricity, attitude polarization and being born in the 1940s within five years of each other.
Afterthought: Looking up Biff Tannen I found that Tom Wilson‘s since had a decent multi-faceted career as an entertainer, including painting, songwriting and stand-up comedy. Asked so much about BTTF, he wrote Biff’s Question Song. It’s nice to see him as a real(-er) person, since he was pretty scary as Biff.
Retrospect, January 15, 2017, five days before Trump’s inauguration: The scary dystopian alternate universe feel of Trump’s election has not been lost. Courtesy of the Sunday edition TV section of The Herald in Glasgow. (by way of George Takei’s twitter), feelings are pervasive throughout the world, dreading the looming Trump era, and wishing it were not so.