The Monday Morning Teaser

So here we are: the last Sift before Election Day. If you haven’t voted already, make sure to do it tomorrow. (And no, you can’t vote online, no matter what that dirty-trick ad said.)

Two featured posts this week: One is my usual Election Night returns-watching guide, with an hour-by-hour discussion of what is likely to be happening when. In the past, readers have reported finding this guide comforting, because given that so much of the Democratic vote is on the west coast, the Republican candidate typically leads most of the night. It helps to know that lead has already been foreseen and doesn’t necessarily mean anything bad is happening.

The other is, well, a meta-discussion of my failure to understand the Trump vote. For months I thought I’d end the campaign with a clear and persuasive piece about why to vote for Clinton rather than Trump. I pictured my regular readers (who probably don’t need much convincing) forwarding it to their wavering friends, or using its points to bolster their discussions with low-information voters who still hadn’t decided.

I failed at that, because it’s just impossible for me to persuade people I don’t understand. And in spite of all the reading and listening I’ve done over the last year, I still don’t understand why anybody thinks Donald Trump should be president. I don’t know how the whole idea got this far, or why it passed the laugh test.

But I couldn’t come to this point and just ignore that the election is happening tomorrow, so I wrote what I’m thinking, understanding that it won’t persuade anybody. The piece is called “I don’t know why we’re having this conversation.”

That piece should be out around 9 EST, and the returns-watching guide maybe 10 or 11. The weekly summary will be out at noon. And then I’m taking a week off. Maybe by November 21 I’ll have a handle on what it all meant.

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Comments

  • Michael  On November 7, 2016 at 8:01 am

    I guess Jill Stein not on your list. That’s who I early cited for based on issues and wanted to get them 4%. As Thomas Frank book Hey Liberal, states, the Democratic Party is as conservative as the republicans.

    Too bad to hear your upcoming Hillary endorsement. Democrats have sold out the average person in the US with their trade deals and their war policies hardly different from Republicans. As a 15 year democrat, idea if electing Hillary with all her corruption makes me barf. They should have nominated Bernie Sanders. Would even prefer Trump over Hillary.

    Michael Wiseley 713-303-6750

    >

    • weeklysift  On November 7, 2016 at 8:06 am

      Jill Stein is not on my list for two reasons: First, she has no more qualifications to be president than Trump does. Second, I want to affect the world, not express my inner purity. The decision the country is making is Clinton or Trump. I don’t want to sit that decision out and rely on everybody else to choose for me.

      I think you have no idea the kind of damage a Trump presidency can do.

    • Shane Harris  On November 7, 2016 at 9:13 am

      I have been trying to convince people that would vote for Trump to vote for Johnson. It dilutes the pool and takes away votes and puts them to someone who can not win. Looks to me like the other side has had the same idea.

  • Bill Camarda  On November 7, 2016 at 8:17 am

    Jill Stein isn’t on my list because a Trump Presidency will permanently eliminate the possibility of major progressive social change in our lifetime.

    Here is why I believe that: https://fatherandsonconverse.wordpress.com/2016/09/06/imagine-president-trump/

    Doug, thanks for your amazing posts this year. Enjoy your well earned week off. Let us all hope for an uneventful election day and a sane result. See you on the other side…

  • cgordon  On November 7, 2016 at 8:37 am

    The fundamental problem with trying to persuade Republican voters is unreasonable hatred of Hillary. Even though I lack enthusiasm for Hillary, I’d never vote for any Republican, even one I might admire personally, as long as the Republican platform rermains supply side economics, militarism, Christianism, and white privilege. As a somewhat conservative person, I recognise that the opposite of conservative is not liberal, it’s radical. And these people are radical.

    • 1mime  On November 7, 2016 at 9:57 am

      I read an interesting quote today from Barach Obama, who said: “If all I did was watch FOX News, I wouldn’t have voted for me either!”

      We may be appalled at what is happening but we really shouldn’t be surprised.

  • Anonymous  On November 7, 2016 at 8:37 am

    They want someone who will go through Washington like a bowling ball through pins. They want to tear it all down, they hate it and have no faith that it can be saved. I think what they fail to realize is that tearing down the structures and institutions of our government only feels good, it doesn’t solve the problems and it invites something much worse to be erected in its place.

  • Anonymous  On November 7, 2016 at 8:40 am

    They want someone who will go through Washington like a bowling ball through pins. They want to tear it all down, they hate it and have no faith that it can be saved. I think what they fail to realize is that tearing down the structures and institutions of our government only feels good, it doesn’t solve the problems and it invites something much worse to be erected in its place.

  • Nancy Banks  On November 7, 2016 at 8:43 am

    Tow great pieces yesterday – 60 Minutes – anger that system is not working -Real anger that is likely part of the seismic changes that are occurring in society – technology and changing immigration patterns – and the legitimate fact some people are really hurting or scared because they no longer no their place. Glen Beck was on NPR yesterday and his piece was also good. People on both sides are not listening – including us or at least me. We hear tea party and tune it out because they are all racists. We are hear our own facts – but while my facts may be correct I may be missing a few.

  • Ann L.  On November 7, 2016 at 8:56 am

    My friend and her husband are liberal, white, college-educated professionals who live in a white-flight suburb of north metro Atlanta. They are dots of blue in a red sea. Yesterday she told me her own parents are voting for Trump and she can’t talk them out of it. I asked why – because they are also white, college-educated professionals – and she said, “They’re single-issue voters. They just won’t hear about anything else.” I didn’t ask what the single issue was (I’m guessing military or morality) – but please know there are people out there who can’t understand their own family’s rationale for a Trump vote.

    • 1mime  On November 7, 2016 at 9:32 am

      I don’t know if this article will be pay-walled, but if it is, try to find it elsewhere. A psychologist speaks to exactly your friend’s dilemma – families/friends whose politics have intruded into their personal relationships. For all who are facing this problem in their lives, this article offers great understanding and coping tools.

      http://www.wsj.com/articles/how-to-get-beyond-our-tribal-politics-1478271810

  • bcdeb1  On November 7, 2016 at 3:49 pm

    Enjoy your rest, Doug 🙂

  • Chris  On November 9, 2016 at 1:10 pm

    “And then I’m taking a week off. Maybe by November 21 I’ll have a handle on what it all meant.”

    I’m guessing when you wrote that you had a different outcome in mind. I’d love to hear your voice on this sooner, though you surely deserve the break.

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