… OR NOT

Yesterday I posted my obituary for the Trump administration. But a less knee-jerk reader has reminded me that “it ain’t over till the fat lady sings”. He’s right. And so to cover my ass, I owe myself an explanation for why, yesterday’s assurances notwithstanding, Trump will win yet again, if he does in fact win yet again..

Because the popular vote is irrelevant to the outcome, in the states that are solidly blue or red, turnout won’t matter. All that will matter are the turnouts in the so-called battleground states. I’ve been assuming that Democrats will turn out in greater numbers than Republicans, because – or so CNN and MSNBC assure me – in this election there’s more at stake for the underclasses. But Trump’s strategy – and it may well work – is to scare the bejesus out of the overclasses.

Why might it work? Because even though the underclasses have much to gain at relatively little cost to the overclasses, risk assessment experts assure us – and there are good evolutionary reasons for this – that people will expend far more effort to avoid even a relatively trivial loss than they will for a chance at even a substantial gain. So every dollar taken to ameliorate the disadvantage of the underclasses in America amounts psychologically to ten dollars taken from the pockets of the overclasses. Trump knows this. And he’s playing on it with the skill of a Yehudi Menuhin.

So since they can’t win the so-called economic argument, the Democrats have to play on whatever sense of distributive justice might be found among white middle class voters in these battleground states. And to this end it would appear that police misconduct has been assigned the surrogate role.

As a Canadian, I have very little skin in the game. And so it’s not surprising that I don’t feel threatened by Black Lives Matter. And because I don’t feel threatened, I have difficulty understanding why white middle class Americans do. And so, being unable to understand why they do, I think they don’t. So naturally I think the Dems will prevail. So if yesterday’s obituary turns out to have been premature, this failure to identify will probably be the reason why. There, does that cover my ass?

 

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