My problem is simply this: why anybody would think a Chicago politician can solve their problems is beyond me.
To be sure: there are a lot of "anybodies" out there.
The tale of the November 2012 presidential election tape:
65,899,583 votes for Obama. 60,931,966 for Romney. The 5-million vote margin is more people than live in Colorado. Too many for Romney to overcome, right?
Remember: the Electoral College directly elects the president, not the popular vote. On three occasions the candidate who won the latter lost the former and the presidency that goes with it. That situation is not democratic by any stretch of the imagination.
To add insult to injury, as discussed in The Big Movida: The Third American Revolution (Chapter 5), the Electoral College is a residue of slavery. How any self-respecting, self-designated "Black" president could not seek to get rid of the College is an astonishing mystery.
Well, not really...
The Electoral College persists because it is the oligarchy´s ace in the hole. If the American people vote for Fidel Castro for president, the College can prevent him from taking office.
Make no mistake: with a 2011 income of $789,674, Barack Obama is solidly among the richest 5% of Americans. Whatever he once was -- and despite objections to the contrary -- he is no longer. He is now an oligarch.
Onward -- through the electoral fog:
270 Electoral College votes are required to win the presidency. 332 votes went to Obama, 206 to Romney.
Here is one way, among others, Romney could have easily won the White House.
1. Florida: 4,237,756 votes for Obama. 4,163,447 for Romney. 74,309 vote margin for Obama. Florida has 29 Electoral College votes.
2. Ohio. 2,827,621 for Obama. 2,661.407 for Romney. 166,214 margin for Obama. 18 Electoral College votes.
3. Virginia. 1,971,820 for Obama. 1,822,522 for Romney. 149,298 margin for Obama. 13 Electoral College votes.
4. Iowa. 822,544 for Obama. 730,617 for Romney. 91,927 margin for Obama. 6 Electoral College votes.
Together, Florida, Ohio, Virginia and Iowa have 66 Electoral College votes. Had Romney carried them, 206 + 66 = 272. Romney wins.
481,778 was the total popular vote margin by which Obama carried those four states. Had just 240,893 of those Obama voters switched to Romney, he would be president. More people live in Hobart, Tasmania. Please note that George W. Bush carried all 4 states against Kerry in 2004, so we are not demanding the impossible.
Conclusion: contrary to what the mass media are telling you, Obama snuck by in an undetected squeaker. More importantly, however, the 2012 election showed a weakness that is grave -- something that is systemic, enduring.
How many people does Obama actually represent? In other words, what percentage of the nation´s legally eligible voters elected him?
In 2012, there were 219,296,589 people legally eligible to vote in America. 129,058,169 voted in the presidential election. Thus, 90,238,420 did not vote. To the nonvoter group must be added over 60 million who voted for Romney/third party candidates.
The mathematics is irrefutable. With 65,899,583 votes, Barack Obama was re-elected president by only 30% of the people legally eligible to vote. We have seen that figure before -- indeed, we predicted it. See below.
In a democracy, the majority rules. 30%: what we have here is not a failure to communicate but a true, authentic, undemocractically-elected president.
Legally, Barack Obama is President of The United States. However, he lacks the one and only thing the oligarchy wants but does not have: legitimacy. The Big Movida (Chapter 4) analyzed this dangerous fact of American life and proposed a solution.
We will take a closer look at the legitimacy deficit in the next post.
The 2012 election exhibited two other facts:
(1) The Locker Split (see post of 9/10/2012) was put to the test. The Split holds that in the absence of more information, the best projection for an election is 53%-47%. (Obviously, the Split excludes from consideration third party candidates). Our October post projected a Locker Split for the presidential election a month away. (That post also projected -- without having the remotest idea who the candidates will be -- a Locker Split for the 2016 election. Stay tuned...)
The official, final numbers for 2012: Obama 52% (actually 51.96%), 48% Romney. The Locker Split was 1% off the mark -- well within any reasonable margin of error.
By not doing -- and not paying for -- a poll, The Locker Split beat the projections of numerous polling firms. Two specific cases: on election eve the Rasmussen Tracking Poll showed 49% for Romney, 48% for Obama. The Gallup Poll on the same day showed Romney with 50%, Obama 49%. To see how other polling firms fared, click here.
Conclusion: In the absence of more information, sometimes more information is not needed.
(2) In 2012, Obama received 65,899,583 votes. In 2008, he received 66,882,230 votes. At least a million 2008-Obama voters joined me -- see our October 19, 2012 post ("Why I Will Not Vote For Obama Again") -- in not voting for him in 2012.
Why abstain? Well, as the October 19 post showed with government figures, under Obama the poor have become poorer, the rich richer, the middle class smaller. A President Romney would not have done any better at halting the mounting catastrophe, in fact probably worse.
Confronted with Oligarchs 1 and 2, what could we do?
Answer: vote for "none of the above." That option of course is not offered on the ballot -- which means, the only way to vote for it is to not vote at all. By staying home, "none" is effectively selected.
Our post of 9/15/2012 concluded that the millions of us nonvoters would not determine if Obama or Romney would be the next president. However, we would determine something else:
"Whoever he is, the next president will be elected by only 30% of the people legally eligible to vote. Mr. President will once again be a politico picked by a small minority. Any claim by him or his supporters to have been `democratically elected,´ i.e., to be the choice of the majority of Americans, will be a lie.
By not voting we deprive the winner and the reigning oligarchy of the one thing they want but do not have: legitimacy. Obama? Romney? We want them both to lose -- and they will.
We nonvoters in November will not create a single thing. We will only make manifest what is latent: the United States does not have a democracy. It has an oligarchy. Only by admitting that fact can desperately needed changes be made."
(i) The one million 2008 Obama voters who did not vote for him in 2012 are a net figure. The gross figure is much higher. The main reason is that millions of people became legally eligible to vote after 2008 and voted for Obama in 2012. This group replaced most of the prior Obama voters who disappeared.
How many Obama voters vanished?
Our ballpark estimate: 7 million. Here is how that figure was derived.
Approximately 16.8 people turned 18 years of age after 2008 and before the 2012 election. To that number must be added new citizens, 2,600,000 from 2008-2012. We will be conservative and assume that -- as with the rest of the voter pool -- only 30% of those new, legally-eligible voters voted for Obama.
Conclusion: 30% of 20 million new voters = roughly 6 million "new voters" for Obama in 2012. Those voters cover most of the 7 million disappeared Obama voters.
That circulation in the voter pool conceals a disquieting fact about Obama: his base vote was draining away.
(ii) Even if we stick with the "pure" verifiable number of one million vanished Obama voters in 2012, a remarkable fact emerges. One million voters don´t seem important in a 130-million voter race. However, as demonstrated, they are 4 times the amount Romney needed -- 241,000 -- to win.
(iii) Keep in mind the real number of vanished Obama voters is closer to 7 million. Had Romney converted them and got them to the polls, he would have won the popular vote.
Those disillusioned Obama voters were there for the taking. So why didn´t Romney take them?
In running against an incumbent, the challenger by his very existence is telling the voters: when you elected my opponent, you made a mistake. The voters look askance: Oh yeah? Where? The challenger must present a credible -- indeed, overwhelming -- response. Romney didn´t have one, especially regarding the gathering storm that could destroy America: the decine of the middle class and the growing class polarization.
Bottom line: Obama was elected not so much by what he did as by what the other man did not do.
(iv) In 2008, 125,225,900 people voted in Obama v. McCain. In 2012, 126,821,549 voted in Obama v. Romney. Voter turnout up, Obama´s numeric vote count down: that is the worst possible scenario an elected official can face. It is all the more strikng when placed atop a "win" by only 30% of the legally eligible voters.
Don´t look for any of the above realities or reasoning on CNN or ABC. Forget the New York Times, the Washington Post.
However, make no mistake: foreign governments have taken note. One of them is home to world champion chess players; another to millennia-formed masters in the art of war. Yet another has ancestors who out-smarted and out-lasted the Roman empire (see The Big Movida. Appendix 3: Waiting for Shapur II).
What they detected: Obama is a lame duck president in more ways than one. We will explore how in the next post.