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"If you're not having fun, you're not doing it right." -- Helyn D. Goldenberg

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“If I hear ‘not allowed’ much oftener,” said Sam, “I’m going to get angry.” -- J.R.R. Tolkien, from Lord of the Rings

Wednesday, August 03, 2016

Today's Must-Read: "The Election's Gonna Be Rigged"

I've been thinking that Trump is pushing this one because he's sure he's going to lose, but I maybe haven't taken it far enough:

Josh Marshall (correctly, in my opinion) surmises that Trump the narcissistic con man is setting the table for a claim that the election was stolen from him:

It may not seem terribly important right now with all the stories roiling the campaign. But I think there's a good chance it's the most important. Over the last 48 hours Trump's allies, surrogates and now Trump himself have forcibly injected the topic of voter fraud or 'election rigging' into the election. Longtime TPM Readers know this topic has probably been the publication's single greatest and most consistent focus over fifteen years. The subject has been investigated countless times. And it is clear that voter fraud and especially voter impersonation fraud is extremely rare - rare almost to the point of non-existence, though there have been a handful of isolated cases.

Via Digby, whose own comment is germane:

But the big problem is that we seem to be in a period of inane conspiracy theorizing and paranoia in the system at large, with anyone who disagrees being assumed to be corrupt or dishonest and the assumption being that the entire system is "rigged." It's not a partisan problem. It's a logic problem and it's getting worse with social media.

As Marshall points out in his piece, this could lead to something very dangerous in terms of Trump since many of his followers are already gun-toting extremists with a very thin grasp of democratic norms. It could be ugly.

I can see this getting to the point where the whole system just implodes -- and I don't mean our system of elections, but our whole system. Start with neo-fascist Trump and his supporters, add in the "sovereign citizens" a la the Bundys and their pocket constitutions that they don't read and don't understand, the "religious" right aiming for a theocracy, and you have a pretty poisonous mixture.

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