Given the damage being caused daily…
…by our Celebrity Apprentice President and his bumbling gang of corrupt incompetents, it’s more important than ever for the voters of this country to return one or both houses of Congress to Democratic control. How? Pretty simple, really: Get registered NOW, and go vote on November 6. If everybody voted every time, Republicans would never win another election. They are the minority party, and they are in power because Democrats allow it.
But as we head into this election season, there’s something extra we have to watch out for: Russian interference in the election. Our entire intelligence community and the Senate Intelligence Committee agree that they influenced the 2016 election in favor of Donald Trump, and succeeded beyond even their own wildest dreams. They are already coming back for more.
My clueless right-wing Facebook “friend” Glenn Koons writes “NOT ONE AMERICAN TOOK ORDERS FROM PUTIN TO VOTE. NOT ONE.” The reason he thinks that is because he doesn’t understand how a disinformation campaign works. What the Russians did through thousands of paid ads on Facebook and other social media, and tens of thousands of automated “bots” was to spread lies in the guise of realistic-looking “news” articles, eventually convincing enough people of falsehoods such as the Democratic primaries were “rigged,” or Clinton and Trump were “the same.”
The targets weren’t the supporters of Donald Trump. The targets were you and me: Democrats, liberals, progressives and lefties. The goal? Divide us and make us angry at each other, blaming each other, and openly ready to punish each other — by “walking away” from the election, or by casting a “protest vote” for a third party candidate. With a big nudge from Putin and his trolls and bots, we split our party, watered down our electoral power, and gave the White House and Supreme Court to Donald Trump.
Of course no one “took orders” from Putin. He wasn’t giving orders. That’s not how the propaganda game works. The Russians simply gave us plausible reasons to think of our natural political allies as sons and daughters of bitches. We did the rest.
The Russians are no longer the threatening Cold War superpower that scared the pants off us from the 1950s through the 80s, but they are definitely not our friends. They see disarray in the United States as a win for them, and they are doing their best to sow discord and chaos in our political system. The election of Donald Trump was a huge surprise triumph for them, and they will try to capitalize on that by keeping the angry, hateful, authoritarian huckster Trump in power, and giving him a Congress that will back him at every incompetent step of the way.
So as the 2018 midterm election approaches, be aware that some of what you see, hear and read, on Facebook, Twitter, TV and radio, will be planted by trolls, in an effort to continue what happened in 2016. Democrats can be a ragged, disorganized bunch, but this time around let’s not allow ourselves to be turned against one another. Let’s welcome our differing opinions, respect our fellow Democrats, and blow off the trolls. If we stand united we can change the world.
Or as Benjamin Franklin said to the signers of our Declaration of Independence: “We must hang together, or surely we will hang separately.”