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World as we know it self-destructs

| It's election day. Finally. And as everyone has told us, over and over and over again, the very future of civilization is at stake.

The voters of Dixville Notch and Hart's Location have spoken. In Dixville Notch, NH, the result was a tie: Obama 5, Romney 5. In Hart's Location it was a decisive victory for Obama, 23 to 7. Extrapolating from these results (28 to 12), Obama is on track to garner 70% of the vote, a landslide, a trouncing, a true woodshed experience for the Mittster.

Of course it won't turn out that way. It will almost certainly be close and therein lies the great head-scratcher of this election: It shouldn't even be close!

The Repugnicans fielded a slate of candidates for the nomination that would have embarassed an election for junior high student council.

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Rick Santorum, Michele Bachman, Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul, Tim Pawlenty, Herman Cain

And out of this motley crew the last one left standing was Mitt Romney. God help us.

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We all laughed when Romney advisor Eric Fehrnstrom said that after the primary elections were over, Romney could begin the general election campaign anew: "It’s almost like an Etch A Sketch. You can kind of shake it up and restart all over again." Well, the last laugh's on us.

Over the course of the campaign, Romney has been on every side of every issue, and every time he takes a new stance he does it not by changing his mind but by pretending that his mind as been always so. He seems able at will to erase all neural traces of any non-conforming thought.

We all gasped at the audacity when Romney pollster Neil Newhouse brassily proclaimed, "We’re not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact-checkers." Once again, the last laugh's on us. The stream of lies, damned lies, and distortions has flowed unabated. After Romney told a campaign audience that Jeep was moving their manufacturing jobs to China, everyone called him out on the lie, including the CEOs of General Motors, Chrysler, and Fiat (owner of Chrysler/Jeep). Was Romney embarassed? Did he recant? No, his campaigned doubled-down by putting the claim in a TV ad!

I'm not familiar precisely with what I said, but I’ll stand by what I said, whatever it was.

Mitt Romney

Nothing epitomizes Romney's disdain for the integrity of words as his reply when a reporter asked if he stood by certain prior comments about Obama. Sure, "whatever it was."

Romney's whole campaign has consisted of assertions. "I know how to create jobs." "I've done it [fill in your own antecedent for "it" here] before, and I'll do it again." He'll lower taxes, increase defense spending, and balance the budget. How? "I have a plan." What is the plan? "I'll tell you after the election." The lessons that have been taught by this campaign — whether Mitt Romney wins or loses — should frighten anyone who believes in democracy. See sidebar for Richard Cohen's excellent op-end on the subject.

Given the ante-deluvian attitudes of the Repugnican Party and the billionaries who are funding this campaign, it is not an exaggeration to say that what we know as the American way of life would be imperiled by a Romney win.

If the Greedy Old Patriarchs have their way, the United States would be a very mean and bleak place for all but the very highest income brackets. (They say that cream rises to the top, and it does, but what has risen to the top of our society is definitely not the cream.)

The Republican Party is on the wrong side of history and what you're seeing — the voter suppression, the lies, the extremism — is a last-ditch effort to freeze change in place and reverse it. Climate change is not a hoax, and neither is demographic change. But they are in denial about both.

As you go to vote, listen carefully to what the GOP says: They mean it. They'll do it. You won't like it.

Last updated on May 19, 2016

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