Thursday, April 28, 2016

The delusional voting block

Almost 11 million people have voted for Donald Trump.  This is millions more than his closest GOP rivals. I can understand this as his last rivals left standing were not satisfactory choices; even compared to him, but there were at least a couple “not-horrific” choices eliminated early on. Jeb Busch even had money; lots of it. There is something going on.

11 million people is a lot of people to believe in something as outrageous as a Trump presidency.

 Of course surveys have shown that:
  • As many as 19 million Americans believe in Unicorns.
  • 114 million Americans believe in UFOs.
  • 144 million Americans believe in Angels.
  • 45 million Americans believe the threat of a Zombie Apocalypse is credible.
  • 80 million Americans believe that the sun revolves around the earth.
  • 38 million Americans believe Bigfoot is wandering abut the Pacific Northwest.

Before you dismiss this belief salad as simply interesting noise it is worthwhile to point out that 64 million Americans believe that President Obama was born someplace outside the US – like Kenya. Donald Trump famously pressured Obama for a detailed copy of his birth certificate, and still “questions” the place of President Obama’s birth.

To put this in perspective the idea is that a single mother living in Hawaii in 1962 could, or would even want to, spend over 60 hours in the air (also refueling 4 times) in order to get to a place with much less developed obstetric care to have her baby, and then do the same trip to get home. The idea is that a woman who was just putting together enough to get by could afford a huge expense like a trip halfway around the world days before she gave birth. The idea is that there was any reason at all to do this. The idea is that the conspiracy needed to do this would overlook how to forge birth record.  In summary the idea is not only incongruous with reality it is incongruous with itself.  It is nuttier than squirrel poo.

Donald trump succeeded in getting less than 20% of the people that believe in this birther nonsense to vote for him, and that was enough to win him the GOP nomination. In other words there are enough people firmly convinced of utter nonsense to sway the election of POTUS.

Truthers are another untapped resource of motivated paranoid voters.
  • 22 million Americans believe that Israel attacked the WTC.
  • 45 million Americans think that their own government was responsible.
  • 80 million Americans “don’t know” who was responsible.

This confusion exists despite the fact that the Al-Qaeda took responsibility, was investigated, and found to be fully responsible. All the attackers were Al-Qaeda, and … well … it is just difficult to imagine how one could decide that it was not Al-Qaeda.

Donald Trump will be able to say something like “I don’t know” in his aggressive form of ignorance that plays well with the paranoid.

Is the delusional-paranoid vote enough to elect a POTUS? In the 2012 election Barak Obama was elected by a sizeable landslide, but only got 65 million votes to Mitt Romney’s 60 million votes. If Trump is able to motivate the delusional voting base he could become president by an even larger landslide.