Thanks, Mr. McK. I don't see the Rs in any better a position, nor the independents for that matter. All the People's Political Scientists and all the People's Political Consultants can't solve the peculiar form of paralysis built into America's contradictory constitution (not the same as, but certainly including the form of its written Constitution). It seems to take catastrophe to do that work, but the great news is that we are sure to get catastrophe. Indeed, we may already have gotten it, and may just be waiting for the larger waves to reach the shore.
I'd go much further than perhaps you might expect in supporting your criticism of the Democrats here, or crucial aspects of it. There's no reason the Electoral College should be a problem for a party that truly captured the "soul" or "spirit" of the nation, and the "WWC" at minimum has a claim on that soul or spirit (or idea or essence...), if not possibly the exclusive claim on which White Supremacists insist.
So, I accept that there is a peculiar, very typical blindspot among modern American liberals or left-liberals regarding this deficit. Their blindspot refers (or fails to refer them) back to itself: They are blind to their blindness. They are also Dunning-Kruger victims on this one. They cannot, for example, abide the argument which tends to get expressed by racists as "if Blacks can have Black Power, why can't we have White Power?" The problem is that answering this question truly adequately would necessarily involve us in matters about which neither side and no one else is prepared to speak in any political context. The problem is, for us, philosophic and historical. Our inability and unwillingness to address it defines us in many ways. I discussed the matter, or one major aspect of it, in more detail in my pieces on "Chait's Insanity," though it also shows up in the Left-Liberal "thymotic" deficit or problem with Jacksonianism.
We seem to be without exception mediocrities and hopeless cranks when it comes to these topics. That's what it means to be trapped within one's era by history. Anyone capable of comprehending the situation is pre-emptively barred from doing so to any effect. It's left to the naturally very decadent products of a very decadent political system to blunder their way through - people like those in the Trump Administration and their counterparts in Congress, but not just them by any means. We're still waiting to find out if America can manage to work things out despite Americans and everyone else, as it has in the past.
Additionally: What matters most to Republicans, or in politics as in many other matters to the "white working class," may be whether they believe or perceive themselves or their status to be in grave jeopardy. They seem to believe the flood is coming, so it's matter of seizing and fortifying as much of the high ground as possible. If and after the wave hits, they may face an empowered majority that will see little or no or anyway much less reason not to adopt the same or many of the very same tactics to reinforce their power and impose their will, regardless of formerly respected constraints that the "conservative" party, in its desperation, has been willing to undermine.
Mr. McKenzie - there's no timer til the next break for a commercial, so no point at all in selectively quoting a text that's right up there for all three of us to see. When Rubin writes "the precedent of firing an FBI director investigating the White House," and you shorten it to "the precedent of firing an FBI director" in order to frame some bit of ridicule first in her direction, then presumably in the direction of anyone who finds what she has to say of interest, you're not arguing a point worth arguing. You're trolling us or playing to a non-existent gallery.
Ditto when Rubin attaches the word "uniquely" to "dishonest," but you respond as though she had extended the adverb comprehensively to the full list of adjectives. Specifically on the matter of honesty, the assessment she is referencing is quite defensible. All presidents have lied. All people lie. Few presidents or people compare to Trump on the matter of compressing so many prevarications, contradictions, falsehoods, and distortions into such small spaces so constantly and so consistently, and in making flagrantly dishonest arguments central to his political practice, from Birtherism to the latest fumbled cover-up. The only stories he seems able to keep straight for any extended time are the most flagrantly ridiculous: That his inauguration was fantastically well-attended and his inaugural speech highly rated, that millions of illegal immigrants were the only reason he did not win more raw votes than crooked Hillary, etc. Otherwise, given the President's manifest verbal and intellectual disabilities, his difficulty holding or completing a thought at all, or recalling what he himself was saying a few years, months, weeks, days, or minutes ago, or caring, the question is whether he and the Administration he leads are capable of honesty, as the term is commonly understood, except inadvertently.
A framed map depicting the 2016 popular vote distribution, which roughly replicated the current US population distribution by density if you color-coded low density in red, high in blue, was recently spotted being brought into the White House. If we view the character of the US government to be of, by, and for the people rather than of, by, and for the acres, the map points to a distorted view of electoral support for the President in November 2016. Treating counties as equivalent units amounts to an even more extreme distortion, kind of an intellectual gerrymander, since "county" in the U.S. covers the ground, as it were, from Pop. 82 Loving, Texas, to Pop. 10,000,000 Los Angeles, CA. By land mass it covers 53 sq. mi. Kalawao, HI, to my own beloved San Bernardino, 51,590 sq. mi. I'll not pause to review the so-called "county equivalents," and instead end my Google-Wikipedia researches here.
Anyway, I'll readily acknowledge, as often in the past I have been among the first to note, that, if you judge results by attachment of the letter R to numbers of representatives at all levels of government, vs attachment of the letter D, then the R party has done quite well for itself up to the present moment. The exercise in which Jennifer Rubin in her column, and bob and I way down here, have been indulging, is one in which credibility is lent to the Q poll, as in, "if the election were held today" and so on: So: If the Q polls and other polls are to be trusted at all - are as close to the final results as were, say, the much-abused 2016 presidential election polls - if the election were held today, and voting decisions roughly matched polled party preferences according to historical patterns, then... the very same judgment currently declaring the Rs the great historical winners will have to be reversed, just as similar ones were reversed in 2006 - 8, prior to the next reversal, and so on.
There are other ways to assess results. The judgment of history in 1942 might have seemed, to those who have no understanding of the idea of the judgment of history, wholly in favor of the German Reich and Co, or of Napoleonic France in 1812, etc., very etc. In short, the someone or -thing is surely coming, as it comes to all, great empires and nobodies on or off the internet. The question now is whether what the Rs finally leave behind will be a shattered visage of Donald Trump and the inscription "Look on my works, ye Haters and Losers, and despair!"
Or there's a sunk costs syndrome going on as well. They gave in to what became the Tea Party, beginning at latest with the failure of "Compassionate Conservatism," and their only unifying theory, vis-a-vis the federal government and its intrinsically progressive constitution, is negation. They've now put more than 10 years into it, and they have no choice or interest-calculus other than to continue as they have been until someone or -thing compels them to stop.