Every Presidential candidate has a base. Those diehards who vote the party line no matter what. Sir Joseph Porter in the Gilbert and Sullivan operetta H.M.S. Pinafore says: “I always voted for my party’s call and I never thought of thinking for myself at all…” Faithful Democrats or Republicans are thus wise. They will brave snow, sleet and rain to come out and vote for the Nominee. One can count on them. It might not actually be possible to drive them away. On the other end of the spectrum are those who wouldn’t vote for the opposing camp even if the Christ were the candidate. So, essentially, one man’s base is the other man’s enemy. This is the element of political elections about which there no possible doubt whatever: The chunk of the electorate who will or will not vote for you, no matter what. And you can take that to the bank. In between are those famous or infamous swing voters. They owe affiliation and or allegiance to neither party. These people vote for the person. They might also, quite easily vote for the person’s ideas. These are the people for whom politicians will actually sell vital organs. These are the people who make or break Presidential political ambitions.
It is worth looking at these independent voters. A fair number of them are truly well informed citizens. They chose their candidate by what they have read about him or her, or what they have heard the candidate say in regard to those national concerns which matter most to them. These people will vote for the candidate who promises to do what they feel needs to be done in regard to immigration or defense or foreign aid or veteran’s benefits, the deficit, the national debt or American Isolationism. These people take the trouble to find out what’s what and whose who! If a candidate speaks their “language” they can count on the independent vote.
But there is another segment of the independent electorate. The completely clueless, ignorant, air-headed Neanderthals who cannot identify the Vice President of the United States from a photograph. They cannot name one Supreme Court judge, not one cabinet secretary. They cannot tell you where Iraq, Iran, Syria, Egypt or Israel is. These are the idiots who frequently name Abraham Lincoln as a founder. Their qualification for a founding father is having one’s image on a coin! These ignoramuses have no idea of the difference between the deficit and the debt; nor do they know what effect they can expect these phenomena to have on their lives. These people get their political images shaped by the likes of Jon Stewart, David Letterman, Jay Leno, Conan O’Brien and Oprah Winfrey.
If a person cannot make it under our economic system, well then, socialism might be the better deal, especially if it promises to wipe out your student debt (incidentally undertaken while getting a degree in Binary Underwater Basket Weaving), buy you a house, give you free health care and take care of your retirement. To those who are “not getting a fair shake”, those who are making it and making big money in the process are the enemy. These morons cannot see beyond the surface of those celebrities from whom they get their ideas, are swimming in wealth that is too much to spend. You’ll never find an “occupy” person questioning Oprah’s wealth. Or Jon Stewart’s wealth. Or Michael Moore’s wealth. This segment of the electorate are educated by the infamous sound bite which is heard over and over again in radio ads, on YouTube or which is shared on Facebook. Tragically, where social media and the electronic age and all the speed that comes with it, should have produced a better-informed electorate, it has had the opposite effect. They do not think for themselves. No politician can win against this mindset. The only chance a candidate can have is to have the mainstream media squarely on his side; for it is the mainstream media that creates the sound bites that these people consume and remember.
Franklin was right. We may not be able to keep the Republic he and his buddies created for us.