Over 40% of eligible voters sat out the 2016 election. This would be a breathtaking statistic to anyone who hasn’t wandered outside recently and spent a few minutes in the company of typical American citizens. As a rule, we are a complacent, ignorant, and feeble-minded people. We love bullshit and peddlers of false hope like preachers and gurus. I don’t mean this unkindly, but even people who aren’t well off have known too much prosperity to demonstrate any sort of desperation about the government. This is perhaps best exemplified by all of the Obama-hating hillbillies who screamed about the last president being a socialist Muslim but also counted on their food stamps and newfound health insurance finding its way toward them thanks to policies that Democrats, for all of their flaws, support far more robustly than Republicans do.
Right now, I would guess that about 90% of ignorant people who routinely participate in important elections vote Republican. (Note that this is a different proposition than saying that 90% of Republicans are ignorant). Evangelical Christians may be a brainless and vile lot, but they have a certain mindless, insectile persistence when it comes to dragging themselves to the polls, where they reliably and proudly vote for whichever of the two or more people on offer is the bigger asshole and menace. Democrats may enjoy priding themselves on being nuanced and discriminating, but the current shitty state of things is largely attributable to the “Bernie or Bust” and third-party voters who apparently assumed things could only get so bad.
Some people who hate Trump but who didn’t vote or voted for someone other than Hillary Clinton are perhaps perfectly okay with the state things have reached. That is their right and I kind of get it because I see so much sheer failure and disappointment in every slice of the American citizenry that at some level I couldn’t care less what happens to this place. I suppose it’s also inevitable that a lot of people who threw their hands in the air and said “Fuck both of these clowns” are experiencing a great deal of remorse but don’t want to admit that their miscalculations and apathy have played a role in the present mess.
Either way, it’s time for Democrats to find a way to claim a huge number of unregistered ignorant people for themselves. Obviously, they’re out there. Dems more or less have to concede that every religious-minded moron is a lost cause and will pull the lever for any hapless dingbat who prates on about “family values” and getting rid of abortion. Also, racism is the default position for dullards, so any candidate who signals friendliness toward xenophobic positions of any sort already has an in of sorts with the slack-jawed and the squint-eyed.
So I suggest lying like crazy to people to get them registered as Dems. Republican leaders do this to proven and profound effect. They have a whole network that keeps illiterates and paranoiacs on edge and on board. They make promises that anyone with a shred of insight can perceive as laughably insincere. But here is a little-known secret about extremely dumb people: they don’t have much insight.
I would implore liberal activists (I’m not one and never will be; I prefer to envision a sudden and violent extinction of the entire human species sometime within the next 17 months, as the Bible predicts, as this gives me comfort and a strange sense of tranquility) to reach out to unregistered-voter dumbasses and promise them all sorts of goodies if they only show up and pull the lever for whatever candidate has a (D) next to his or her name in November. If they’re homeless, promise them housing. If they like Chinese food, print up fake coupons for Chinese restaurants that don’t actually exist. Weave as many crude and laughable fictions as possible and bombard everyone you know with motivation to vote against Republicans. The party has become a compete waste and it’s really too mad that the most principled GOP U.S. senator right now is the one dying or brain cancer when in fact pretty much all the rest of them deserve this fate or worse.