Why I am voting for Joe Biden.

Democracies don’t end overnight — tyranny is a slow roll of systematically wearing people down so that each new small change does not seem too much to stomach — not too much from the status quo. This is laid out in books such as On Tyranny, On Fascism, The Origins of Totalitarianism, How Democracies Die and countless other histories of authoritarian rule.

This administration has certainly worn us down. The agencies are now led by their industry’s most unapologetic lobbyists, who have gutted rules to inflate their pockets at the expense of your food, water, and security. Loyalists run the Department of Justice and Department of Homeland Security and pressure our law enforcement agencies to function to protect the President and not the rule of law. White supremacists are emboldened and empowered, “standing back and standing by” at his order, increasingly armed and violent. Armed with lies and propaganda, those who are still stand with him have abandoned their civil ethos and expectations for good governance.

In the past one year alone:

  • The US President attempted to blackmail a foreign government to help his re-election bid, was exposed by a whistleblower whose testimony was corroborated by under-oath testimonies of dozens of high-level non-partisan government officials, obstructed justice for that investigation, and his political party had the power to help him avoid all legal accountability. We do not know how many other nations have been influenced in this manner.

This is just the past one year.

Decisions are moral and intellectual forks; making them alters you. CS Lewis wrote “Every time you make a choice you are turning the central part of you, the part of you that chooses, into something a little different than it was before.” The decision to support Donald Trump — manifest either by voting for him, abstaining from voting, or voting for a third party — is no different.

To support Donald Trump, you must either agree with his words or argue that words in leadership are a triviality. Neither argument is tenable. To argue that “I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait. And when you’re a star they let you do it. You can do anything… Grab them by the pussy. You can do anything.” is acceptable is to argue that a man taking pride in sexually assaulting a woman is acceptable. It is an irrevocable statement what you consider moral and good in private conversations among men. To argue that responding “Proud Boys stand back and stand by” is an acceptable response to the invitation to denounce white supremacy is to argue that open encouragement of white supremacy is acceptable. This is an irrevocable statement of what you consider moral and good in leadership.

To support Donald Trump, you must either argue that the worst COVID death rate in the world, skyrocketing debt, uninsurance, inequality, mass social unrest, unprecedented social division, are good results, or that results in leadership are irrelevant. Neither argument is tenable.

To continue to follow a leader into morally and intellectually untenable arguments is to degrade oneself morally and intellectually. Asking his supporters to defend his words and record makes this clear. We are no longer shocked to hear his supporters justify the separation of children from immigrant parents, the holding of immigrants in cages without flu vaccinations or dental hygiene, the references to immigrants as vermin, the use of weapons to chase down and kill black people protesting police brutality or native people protesting pipeline construction.

None of this can be sustained for long in a Republic without that Republic falling into tyranny and ruin, as so many that preceded it have. I am voting out corruption, incompetence, nepotism, crony capitalism, propaganda, racism, the politics of division, the exploitation of religion, the scapegoating of the powerless, voter disenfranchisement, and a dangerously ideological and uneconomic misunderstanding of market capitalism.

I am voting for Joe Biden. I am voting for data-backed decisions, merit-based leadership, the separation of powers, accountability to the press’s questions and people’s votes, climate action, mass voter enfranchisement, big investments in people and infrastructure, racial justice, the sanctification of women’s moral rights, sensible regulation, and healthcare for every person. But most of all I am voting for the hope that the Democratic Party can turn this tragic misdirected ship back around, the way it did in 2008, before it is too late.



electric power, business, environmental economics, climate policy

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