Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Trump Should Threaten to Support Loeffler and Dump Perdue


Trump may yet win this election. Or he may not. I believe that if he loses, there is solid evidence it will be as the result of fraud. But that’s not directly relevant to what I want to discuss in this post. Regardless of the outcome for Trump, I think it can be generally agreed that Trump grew the Republican coalition over the last four years. It can be further agreed that the massive turnout for Republicans this year was a direct result of Trump bringing out huge numbers of voters, many of whom wouldn’t have bothered if Trump had not been on the ballot. As a result of that enthusiasm directly attributable to Donald Trump, the Republicans gained seats in the House that they were expecting to lose, they held the Senate (so far), and they improved their standing in Governorships and State Houses across the country. The Republican Party owes Trump a huge debt of gratitude. But are they bothering to actually express any of that gratitude? I would argue that they are publicly paying lip service to Trump while privately expressing relief that he may soon be out of their hair. And that’s why they are barely bothering to lift a finger to help “stop the steal.” I’d like to see Trump dish out some punishment to these Republican swamp types along the lines of what he’s done to Democrats over the past four years. It’s time for Trump to play hardball, and I think he should throw his first pitch in Georgia.

I guess I should warn you that I’m speaking from the perspective of a conservative who is disgusted with the Republican Party and who wants Trump to be the agent of change that the Party needs. Trump is the guy who is transforming the Republicans (gutting them would be a more descriptive term) from just another party of the swamp into an America first, economic/nationalist populist party of the middle class. He’s created a new coalition with working class voters, conservative minority voters, voters wanting less foreign intervention, and socially more liberal voters who previously thought their only option was to vote for Team Blue, but who are now disillusioned with the progressive, intersectional elements that are pushing the Democratic Party off of a cliff.
The Senate is now 50 to 48. The two Georgia Senate seats are critical for Republicans if they want to keep the Senate out of Democratic hands. A 50/50 Senate with Kamala Harris as a tie breaker is a horrible vision of our dystopian future if Republicans lose those two seats. The prospect of a Democratic House, an (essentially) Democratic Senate, and a Democratic president is just too terrible to contemplate, though, to be honest, we need to start contemplating it pretty soon, because it is certainly possible if not likely. So Republicans really need to do all they can to support wins for David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler. But for people like me, the prospect of supporting the likes of Perdue and Loeffler is unappetizing to say the least. They are both swamp Republicans and they, along with most of the Republican elites, are offering Trump no help in turning back the steal in Georgia. In an ideal world, they would both lose as a result, and under ordinary circumstances, I’d be quite happy to see them go. But not now. Not this year. There’s too much at stake. Just like FDR had to ally with Stalin to beat Hitler, we must now hold our noses and ally with Purdue and Loeffler to defeat the prospect of a Democratic majority in the Senate. 
Or maybe we don’t. 
Maybe we don’t have to completely capitulate to the swamp. Trump still has some cards to play. Whether conventional Republicans like it or not, Donald Trump has leverage. Win or lose, Donald Trump IS the Republican Party, and he can demand conditions. And if Republicans don’t accommodate him, Trump is in a position to demonstrate just what a powerful force he can be going forward, and he can start in Georgia.
Look at the current situation in Georgia. More specifically look at the numbers from the November Senate races:  (Click to Enlarge)

If I was a Republican candidate for the US Senate in Georgia, I don’t think I would feel too confident about the January election based on these numbers. Especially if my name was David Perdue. Perdue led Jon Ossoff by only 1.8% or a mere 88,098 votes. The Libertarian candidate got 2.2% of the vote or 106,767 votes. The Libertarian covered the spread between the two majority candidates. That almost never happens. The disposition of his votes in the runoff will determine who wins in January. I spent 10 years as a Libertarian, and believe me when I tell you, if you’re a Republican and your political future rests on the electoral decisions of a bunch of Libertarians, you are in big trouble. And if your Republican vote turnout depends on the coattails of the most popular Republican presidential candidate since Ronald Reagan, and that candidate isn’t on the ballot in January, YOU’RE SCREWED!!
Loeffler’s prospects aren’t much better. Even if you add all of Doug Collins’ votes to hers, that only puts her at 45.9%, and a lot of the also rans in that race were Democrats whose votes can be presumed to go to Loeffler’s Democratic challenger in the runoff. I’m sure Loeffler and Perdue will both be the beneficiaries of huge amounts of campaign money, but so will the Democratic candidates. And Democratic enthusiasm will be off the charts at the prospect of taking back the Senate. Republican enthusiasm? Well that depends. With the support of Donald Trump, the Republicans might have a chance. Without that support, Republicans are toast; especially if they have not taken any measures to eliminate the factors that contributed to the voter fraud that lost Trump the race in November. Factors such as huge numbers of mail in ballots most of which were processed without signature checks. Factors such as large numbers of those mail in registrants having P.O Boxes or mail drops listed as their physical address which directly contradicts the law. If large numbers of those illegally registered voters had voted in person, one might presume that they were innocent mistakes. The fact that they overwhelmingly voted by mail means the chances are pretty good that most of those ballots were fraudulent. I’m going to take the liberty of putting those votes in the Democratic column in January if the voter rolls are not purged beforehand, and that means goodby Republican Senate. 
So what can be done? What does Trump want? What should he demand? Well first of all, he must demand that the purging of illegal registrations from the voter rolls be done sooner rather than later, and the data confirmed from that purge be used to argue that the November race was tainted. That should be used as grounds to compel Georgia’s Republican Secretary of State Raffensburger to not certify the election results. Failing that, it should be used as grounds for a lawsuit contesting the consent decree entered into by Raffensburger that established the practice of foregoing signature checks. He had no authority to do that without the state legislature prescribing that in law. And failing that, the Republican state legislature in Georgia should put forward an alternate slate of electors to the Electoral College and let Congress sort it out.
For the life of me, I can’t understand why the officials in Georgia are not willing to do this without being threatened. One suggestion is that if a remedial signature match was to be performed properly, the Governor and Secretary of State would be exposed as having been incompetent or worse, complicit in fraud. Regardless, the prospect of winning or losing two Senate seats rests in the balance. Does the swamp hate Trump so much that they are willing to pay that price?
If Trump gets cooperation, he should do everything in his power to campaign in favor of the two Republican Senate candidates. If not, he should instruct his followers to stay home. Let’s see how the Republican Party will fare in two years with Trump every bit as adversarial to the Republican Party as it has been to him. I suspect that Trump won’t have to do this. The threat of his withdrawing his support should be enough.
Or how about this? Trump threatens the Republican Party with picking one Senator to support and one Senator to abandon? If the Senator he supports wins, that preserves the Senate majority for the Republicans (just barely) while still sending a powerful message to the party hierarchy. Don’t take Trump for granted. I suggest Trump supports Loeffler and abandons Perdue. Loeffler’s candidacy is to complete the term of Senator Johnny Isaakson who retired prematurely for medical reasons at the end of 2019. Loeffler was appointed to the seat and is now running to complete the rest of Isaakson’s term which will expire in 2022, just two years from now. If Trump is forced out due to Republicans’ unwillingness to fight for him, there’s a good chance he will spend the next two years building his political movement, and the #1 item on his agenda should be to primary Loeffler, say by supporting another run by Trump loyalist Doug Collins. I’d be willing to bet that two years of Trump railing against the Party for having betrayed him would do wonders for Collins’ chances the second time around. And I bet that Trump would be more successful in reshaping the Republican Party while out of office than he would be if elected now for four more years. 
I may be wrong about Trump’s influence, and I may be underestimating the risks of such a strategy, but if the prize is a reconstituted and realigned Party instead of just the same old Lesser of Two Evils Republicans, then I’d sure like to see Trump attempt it.


Friday, November 13, 2020

Bibliography Voting Machine Vulnerability/Fraud


Post election Video Presentation by Russell Ramsland of Allied Security Operations Group explaining how voting machines are not air gapped and how vote switching can occur.  Never mentions Hammer and Scorecard, but if they were real, this might be what they would look like in real time.  

More Russell Ramsland this time with Debbie Georgatos on 28 October, 2020

EVEREST: Evaluation and Validation of Election-Related Equipment, Standards and Testing∗†Final Report  December 7, 2007  This one is older, but from what I gather kind of the gold standard in vulnerability analysis.  It's long though.  334 pages


How to Rig an Election   The G.O.P. aims to paint the country red

By    Nov 2012

How Trustworthy Are Electronic Voting Systems in the US? By Beth Clarkson  June 26,2015


Vote Counts and Polls: An Insidious Feedback Loop

Black box voting (Wikipedia)


Post-Election Audits: Restoring Trust in Elections

Aug 1, 2007  Lawrence Norden  90 Pg Downloadable Report

 Republican Primary Election 2012 Results: Amazing Statistical AnomaliesFrancois Choquette, James Johnson August 13, 2012 


A Retired NSA Analyst Proves the GOP Is Stealing Elections


Was Election Fraud Predicted for 2012?


January 2014The American Voting Experience:Report and Recommendations of the Presidential Commission on Election Administration 

What Went Wrong In Ohio: The Conyers Report on the 2004 Presidential Election Paperback – August 30, 2005


Thursday, November 12, 2020

Wish Biden and Trump Could Both Lose? They Can! It's Not Too Late to Save the Republic.


 Consider this scenario to settle the election in accordance with the law while also resolving, to some small extent, the severe partisanship bordering on hatred that we are seeing in the country today.
When Congress meets on 6 January to tally Electoral College votes, they reject enough state's vote tallies to bring every candidate's vote tally below 270. Then by law (12th Amendment) the House chooses the President by a vote of delegations and the Senate chooses the Vice President. 
To see how this resolves the partisan issue, you need to pay attention to the mechanics of the process. And it requires at least one "faithless elector" to cast a presidential ballot for someone who is not a divisive figure. Someone who neither party might be happy with, but both parties could live with. If I had to choose that person, I'd choose former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates or former Democratic presidential candidate Jim Webb. To satisfy my Libertarian friends, we could even make that choice Libertarian presidential candidate Jo Jorgensen. Here's how it could happen:
Not all states allow by law for an elector in that state to cast a vote for someone who was not the winner of the popular vote in that state. But some do. This website details the law in various states.

Let's go to the top of the list, Alabama, because the law there 1) applies no penalty for a faithless vote, 2) allows the vote to stand, that is it doesn't automatically replace the faithless elector with someone who would vote in accordance with the popular vote, and 3) Alabama voted for Trump, so if Trump is on track to lose in a conventional Electoral College vote, an Alabama elector is more likely to be willing to stray from the norm to prevent a Biden presidency. In my opinion, this faithless elector, though certain to garner scorn from some uber partisans, would probably be praised as the savior of the Republic by the rest of us. 
OK. So now we go to the House chamber on 6 January 2021 and a joint session of Congress. The session is chaired by the president of the Senate, the current Vice President Mike Pence. As each state's electoral ballots are counted there is an opportunity for objection to the acceptance of said ballots. By law, that requires at least one House member and one Senate member to file a written objection. That should be a pretty low bar. I'd bet Senators Romney, Collins or Murkowski could be persuaded. When this happens, the Senate retires to it's own chamber and both Houses have two hours of debate followed by a vote. Significantly, the vote in the House is conducted by state delegation, not by individual House members. Currently the Republicans have majorities in 26 of the 50 state delegations and that is not anticipated to change after the new Congress is sworn in on 3 January 2021.  So presumably, the House will vote to reject those electoral votes. 
Now we examine the Senate, and even if the runoff elections for Senator in Georgia BOTH go to the Democrats, that only gives the Democrats 50 Senators. Now with a Biden presidency, the Senate would be in Democratic hands because the Vice President, Kamala Harris, tips the majority to the Democrats as the tie breaking vote. But this event all takes place on 6 January of next year. Mike Pence is still that tie breaking vote, and presumably the electoral votes get refused.
This same scenario needs to play out in several states in order to accomplish the goal of reducing any one candidate's total of electoral votes to below 270. I'm not sure how the law is written, but the number might need to be reduced to below half the ballots accepted, not simply below the number 270 which is half the ballots cast. I'll let the legal scholars in the Congress figure that out. My suggestion would be to disqualify votes from the states where there are credible allegations of fraud. All the more justification to refuse to accept those votes. Political cover of a sort.
So now we have an Electoral College in which no candidate has the required number of ballots for election to the presidency. Under those circumstances, the Constitution's 12th Amendment is quite clear on how to proceed from here.

The House of Representatives votes to choose from among the top three vote getters, in this case Trump, Biden, and Jorgensen (or substitute another candidate of your choice). Once again, the vote in the House is conducted by delegation. Presumably the candidate introduced by the faithless elector would win the vote if this enterprise goes according to plan. There would be nothing to stop the delegations from voting for Trump at this point, but that would defeat the goal of reducing partisan rancor. Indeed, it would almost certainly be seen as outright theft of the presidency, although it would still be perfectly legal. And since all the actors needed for this scenario to play out are Republicans, it would certainly be possible for this to be used to steal a win for Trump when most would acknowledge it was not deserved. Still, I think few of the Republican participants would be willing to put their careers on the line, not to mention the future of the country, just to save Trump. Most of them will probably be glad to see the back of him, and though some Republicans might blame them for denying Trump four more years, I'll bet there will be plenty of reluctant Biden voters who will forgive them denying those four years to Biden in the name of saving the country.
So next we move on to the selection of the Vice President. That happens in the Senate where each Senator gets one vote, but unlike the House where the choice is between the top three vote getters, the Senate's choice for Vice President is made only from among the top two. Harris or Pence. For my money, Harris is simply an unacceptable choice. Especially among Republicans, and all the key players in this scenario are Republicans. To name Mike Pence the Vice President would be particularly appealing to Republicans if the presidency was to go to one of the prominent Democrats I mentioned, and that would be especially true if the Senate were to end up 50-50, and a Republican Senate could only be narrowly assured with a Republican Vice President at the helm as a tie breaker. Another reason for choosing Pence is his cooperation as President of the Senate during the counting of electoral votes might be necessary, and if the Georgia Senate seats both go to Democrats, his tie breaking vote will determine the Vice Presidency. There's little chance he's choosing Harris over himself. This could work. Who knows. We might even approach bi partisan governance going forward as we seek to heal the partisan wounds of the past.
You might be surprised to learn that I don't see this scenario as a particular long shot. If Trump can prove election fraud of a significant enough magnitude to rightfully claim the presidency, then I would support him. I believe that fraud likely occurred. But if that can't be proven to the satisfaction of most reasonable people, then the divisions created in this country as a consequence of half the population believing the election was stolen no matter who wins is an unacceptable alternative. I hope lawmakers in Congress see the choices their same way I do.

Monday, June 8, 2020

Black Lives Matter: Shibboleth for 2020

Imagine this scenario.  You're sitting at home with your wife or husband on the couch next to you, and she/he turns to you and asks, "What do you think about Black Lives Matter?"  How do you respond?  If you're like me, your response is, "All lives matter."  Now what if you were in a group of friends?  One of your friends asks the same question.  My response would be the same.  Would yours?  What if it were in a mixed group composed of some friends and some strangers?  What if it was a group of mostly strangers or all strangers?  What if the strangers were mostly black?  What if they were on the sidewalk holding signs that read Black Lives Matter and chanting "I can't breathe?"  Do you see where I'm going with this?  Am I making you a little uncomfortable?

For some people, how you respond to the question, "Do Black Lives Matter" will define how they think about you.  Some people will know by your response whether they like you or not.  Some people will know by your response whether they hate you or not.  And these days, if you're in the wrong place and among the wrong people, the videos suggest that some people will decide based on your response whether they want to beat you up or not, either verbally or in some cases physically.

I hate that circumstances now demand that I declare that I'm not a racist.  I'll further explain that I'm a 67 year old white guy, BUT I'm not a racist.  Now there was a time when I could have said I'm a 67 year old white guy AND I'm not a racist.  But these days there are some people who are trying to create the common assumption that somebody like me MUST be a racist simply by virtue of my age and my skin color.  I'd like to be able to say that I'm 67 years old, AND oh by the way, I'm not a racist, but these days I feel compelled to say, I'm 67 years old, BUT contrary to what we're all meant to presume, I'm not a racist.  I will assume that the difference in the language here is not too nuanced to understand.  I'm more than just a little bit sick of this!

Christian villagers of Ungheni, Bessarabia Governorate, displaying icons on their homes in order to defend themselves from a pogrom, 1905

For me, the response "All Lives Matter" is a no brainer.  Does that mean I think black lives DON'T matter?  Of course not.  But being "invited" or in reality being compelled, or shamed, or in some cases almost threatened to say Black Lives Matter, as if it were some sort of catechism, stirs more than just a little bit of rage inside of me.  It's as if my interrogator is trying to force me to accept his implied premise that in fact black lives matter MORE than any other lives.  They don't.  They ALL matter.  No amount of coercion will make me feel any differently, though I suppose an adequate amount of coercion might compel me to SAY I feel differently.  I'm hoping I won't ever have to take part in the experiment to answer that question. I suspect that what the mob really wants though, prefers actually, is to conduct that research independently, on each and every one of us. They're not looking for a true transformation, but a conversion by intimidation, a conversion by inquisition.

So I reject the incantation "Black Lives Matter" while recognizing that it has become a shibboleth for our time. Your chosen three word response to a question about the value of human life will determine if you are a good person or a bad one; if you are friend or foe. A member of the tribe or the enemy "other".  I'm happy to utter the words black lives matter in the absence of duress, but while you may think you're hearing Black Lives Matter, if I were to transcribe my utterance onto the written page, they would contain no capital letters.  And don't be surprised if I follow it up with, "but then actually, all lives matter." I see Black Lives Matter (with capital letters) as a conspiracy by some to intimidate a political opponent.  It may not have started out that way, (then again, maybe it did.  I have no way to know), and it certainly isn't that for all concerned.  Lots of people marching under the banner of Black Lives Matter are decent, sincere, and well meaning people.  But I'm certain there are some for whom the slogan is nothing more than a cudgel with which to intimidate their enemies.

There is a lengthy debate to be had about policing and the black community which should be conducted based on facts not feelings.  But today, with calls to defund the police, it is sadly not the time to introduce facts into the discussion.  I'm also concerned about who will be taking part in that discussion when it ultimately does take place.  Unfortunately, I suspect that the debate will be dominated by callow, pandering politicians and the intersectionality peddling purveyors of race grievance, more commonly known as race hustlers.  Neither of these groups will be reluctant to advance the country right up to the precipice of a race war if there was a buck to be made and power to be gained.  

Shibboleth.  That's a peculiar word, shibboleth.  The Wikipedia definition above explains adequately enough what about the phrase "Black Lives Matter" prompted me to write this article.  But I prefer the explanation offered the very first time I ever encountered the word in an episode of The West Wing about twenty years ago.  There was something so sophisticated and scholarly about Jed Bartlett quoting the Bible from memory.  Progressives were so much easier to get along with back then.  And occasionally, they could even teach you something.  Those were the good old days, huh? 

Tuesday, May 5, 2020

Government Is Not Done Screwing This Up

Members of Congress, especially on the Republican side, are making noises about instituting some sort of legislative fix to prevent a flood of lawsuits against business owners once virus restrictions are finally relaxed. They’re worried about ambulance chasing lawyers crippling already weakened enterprises with thousands of lawsuits by both customers and employees for failing to take proper measures to ensure the safety of all concerned in the aftermath of the pandemic. They want to both reduce the number of frivolous lawsuits and standardize the criteria across all the states.

 I sympathize with the motives here, but you know they’re going to screw this up. The goal will be to protect business owners from the most timid and fearful among us who will be driven by panic to second guess whether protective measures at any particular business are adequate to their standards. Of course, Congress won’t want to be accused of not taking the issue seriously enough, so they will take it upon themselves to set their own guidelines for what constitutes proper precautions. That’s where they’ll bollox this all up. They just won’t be able to help themselves.

Some committee of politicians will have to come to a consensus on what constitutes proper precautions. Every petty bureaucrat on the committee will have ideas of their own, and everyone’s ideas must be accommodated to reach consensus. What could possibly go wrong? I’m sure this is how we ended up with TSA guidelines and OSHA rules. Businesses will be forced to comply because either government will compel them to comply, or the newly devised “voluntary” guidelines will become the de facto standard based on what will be labelled “consensus”. Defy the “recommendations” and be prepared to defend yourself in court for decisions that don’t align in some way with the “sound principles” blessed by government bureaucrats in all their wisdom. Instead of a return to normalcy, Congress will end up enshrining some of the stupidest, most cumbersome regulations into a new standard of business practice with which we will be burdened forever. You know I’m right.

Monday, February 17, 2020

It's a Funny Old World: Bloomberg Edition

I’m one of those reluctant Trump supporters who are more or less pleased with his policies, but just wish he’d STFU once in a while. I’d like a better Republican choice, like Nikki Haley perhaps, but that’s not in the cards for this year. On balance then, I’d like to see four more years and a couple more Supreme Court picks for Donald Trump.

St, Michael of the Blessed Democratic Party
 None of the Democrats running for president, all 24 of them at one point, struck me as having anything particularly appealing to offer the voting public. Mostly a bunch of puffed-up Senators and second-rate posers/opportunists, but I repeat myself. Biden concerned me for a little while, but once he appeared on the campaign stage, it was painfully obvious that he was well past his sell-by date. The first two contests in Iowa and New Hampshire suggest that the rest of the Democratic electorate see that too. Trump could have saved himself the four months of impeachment headaches from that Zelensky phone call. It turns out Biden was destined to blow himself up without any help from Hunter or the Ukrainians! Hah! Who knew?

But for the past several months I’ve been concerned … really concerned, that Mike Bloomberg just might have what it takes to beat Donald Trump. Bloomberg is a guy with some gravitas. He built a multibillion-dollar technology company from the ground up. He was, by most accounts, a successful mayor of America’s largest city where he regularly dealt with big issues of real significance. Oh … and the money. Don’t forget the money. He’s got billions and billions of dollars, and he’s apparently decided he’s willing to spend whatever it takes to defeat Donald Trump. Judging by what I read, Bloomberg’s advertising buys are apparently an order of magnitude greater than anything ever seen before in modern politics.

And I see the appeal of Mike Bloomberg. I kind of like some of the things he stands for. Despite being currently registered as a Libertarian, I’m not particularly offended by his support of the stop-and-frisk policy. It may have been politically incorrect, but Bloomberg, following in Rudy’s footsteps, recognized that the gun violence in New York City was largely a problem within one particular demographic. And that demographic didn’t just describe the perpetrators of the violence, but the victims as well. Bloomberg supported a controversial policy that may not have sat well with the ACLU, but it worked. I guess I’m one of those pragmatic Libertarians. Profiling does not send me looking for the smelling salts. And today I saw an old video of Bloomberg talking about how meaningful healthcare reform will require saying no to some people. Well, duh! What true Libertarian will disagree with that?

Oddly enough, you know what this card-carrying Libertarian objects to the most about Michael Bloomberg? His soda ban! While mayor of New York City, he instituted a limit on the size of your soda cup because he thought he should decide for you how large a soda to purchase. For your own good, of course! You were too stupid to make that decision for yourself. Mike Bloomberg, clothed in the robes of the All-Powerful Nanny State would make that decision on your behalf.

So I kind of like Policy Mike Bloomberg, but I hate Nanny-State Mike Bloomberg. How petty is that? Well, as it turns out, not really so petty after all. Mike Bloomberg is also a gun control freak and a climate alarmist. So, this Libertarian can comfortably oppose him on solid policy grounds without having to look like a petulant child throwing a tantrum because my Mountain Dew portion is too small.

So, back to my previous concern. What if this guy wins? It could happen. I kind of like him. Some Republicans and plenty of independents will like him. And the Donald is such a blowhard. He pisses off a lot of people. So many voters viscerally hate him. Plus, Donald inherited his fortune and squandered a lot of it. Bloomberg earned every penny of his. Bloomberg may not be the showman Trump is, but does anybody really doubt that Bloomberg is probably a lot smarter and way more capable than Donald Trump?

And the money. All that money! And despite Bloomberg’s nominally Republican past, he would be a disaster for conservatism in this country. And he could win. Did I mention that? Abortion-on-demand judges, trillions frittered away on the Green New Deal, and the Second Amendment facing the most significant threat in my lifetime. That’s what a Bloomberg presidency could mean.

Here’s where we stand today: It’s still a crowded Democratic field. There’s a progressive lane dominated by Bernie Sanders and a so-called moderate lane still cluttered with a slew of possibly viable contenders, none of whom can emerge because the others won’t get out of the way. And to the horror of the Democratic establishment, it’s starting to look like Bernie Sanders could win with an anemic plurality. Bernie emerges victorious, by some reckoning, because he is the cleanest dirty shirt. And swooping in to take advantage of this lack of clarity in the Democratic race is the seemingly invincible Mike Bloomberg. It’s a plausible scenario. I was starting to get worried. I was almost convinced.

But then, something happened. Something changed. I’m still not complacent, but I see a few green shoots of hope blossoming from the election results of the past few weeks. It turns out, this Libertarian isn’t the only one who is worried about Mike Bloomberg. It turns out there are a lot of Democrats who are worried about him too. I’m starting to see news stories and anti-Bloomberg ads paid for by other Democrats. Every other Democrat in the moderate lane opposes him because he’s their competition. They resent his Johnny-come-lately entry into the race while they’ve been slogging away for months. They resent his bottomless well of money that will be spent against them before any of it is spent on Trump. And they resent that he is climbing up in the polls based on advertising while never having had to face the scrutiny of the debate stage.

If the moderates resent him, the Bernie Bros absolutely despise him. He represents everything they hate in politics. Bloomberg is a billionaire former Republican who is buying the election, and who, no matter what he says now, has had impure thoughts in the past on some of the most sacred tenets of progressive orthodoxy. The moderates, if defeated, will fall in line behind Bloomberg. But Bernie would probably cut off his left testicle before he would endorse Mike Bloomberg for president.  Some of the Bernie Bros will swallow hard and vote for Bloomberg. Many will stay home or vote Green. Oddly enough, the Donald will likely convince some to vote Trump in 2020. Either way, the edifice that is Mike Bloomberg seems to be slightly less imposing now that his Democratic opponents have seen fit to focus more attention on him. And the irony is that if Bloomberg is defeated, it will not be at the hands of Donald Trump, but at the hands of his fellow Democrats. The same fellow Democrats for whom he represents, even if they don’t realize it, the only real possibility of beating Donald Trump. Trump should lay off of Mini-Mike for the time being. Let the Democrats beat up on Bloomberg for him. It’s time for the Donald to channel his inner Napoleon. Don’t interrupt your enemies while they are destroying themselves.

The irony of this situation is difficult to ignore. If Bloomberg wins the Democratic nomination, he alienates, perhaps permanently, a sizeable portion of the Democratic coalition. If he loses, he cedes the stage to a much more beatable alternative, no matter who that is. Republicans, who have the most to fear from Mike Bloomberg, needn’t lift a finger to oppose him, at least not yet. Democrats are rushing forward to take up the banner against him. After months of campaigning by a lackluster group of Democratic presidential candidates, one late arrival starts to emerge as someone who actually has the capacity to beat Donald Trump. A star has appeared in the eastern sky. A potential savior has been born unto the Democrats to wash away the sins of months of clumsy, ineffectual, and at times viciously adversarial campaigning, and the response of the rest of the Democrats is to try and smother the new arrival in his crib. Mike Bloomberg, the brightest hope the Democratic Party has for rescuing them from four more years of Donald Trump might just end up being defeated by the very people he is trying to rescue. It’s a funny old world.