October 5, 2023
Rogers: Election Day, a horror present
Aspen Occasions editor Don Rogers
Courtesy photograph

Nevertheless the midterms go, the passage of Election Day will deliver aid.

Democracy certainly will toddle on at the same time as half the nation panics and threatens to maneuver to Canada, New Zealand or Hungary possibly, the way in which some wax on.

Not less than there can be a pause within the nasty advertisements TV viewers and social media followers maintain complaining about. I miss all that, skipping these dopamine and cortisol dispensers, but handle to maintain up with most of what we must always from the information via extra primitive means. Textual content, pages, on-line in addition to in hand.

Maybe that explains why I additionally skip many of the concern and divisiveness I maintain studying about. I imply, I get pleasure from speaking with Republicans and Democrats simply fantastic. We don’t have to purchase one another’s concepts. We don’t need to detest the opposite for having them, both.

Virtually nobody of their coronary heart desires to finish America anyway. There’s normally some room on the coronary heart to work if we put our minds to it. Sure, I do know, that’s not the style of the second.   

However then additionally, when had been we ever not wringing our arms about America gone off monitor? Eisenhower possibly? I wasn’t alive then to know.

I believe elections and politics usually match the horror style. We wail, we thrill, we have now one thing to speak about, I suppose. Level being, each election cycle is the worst ever. Effectively, as long as you’re not a historical past buff. However actually, worse than pre-Civil Warfare? Worse than true Jim Crow? Vietnam? Worse than when it was unlawful for girls to vote?

When was this golden period when these things wasn’t the “worst ever”? When the nation was based, and the one voters could possibly be landowning, male and pale?


One way or the other, our world managed to not finish with the elections of Obama, Bush, Clinton, Bush, Reagan, Carter et al. Nor Trump nor Biden, decide your bogeyman.

It type of has gone the opposite method, really. On stability, we’ve grown wealthier, more healthy, cleaner, fairer, safer, higher educated whereas we wail how we’ve by no means had it worse every election cycle.

Our high quality of life has grown even because the stakes for our relative largesse rise and rise. We brag about “carbon-neutral” airports — airports! — as if shopping for some credit, planting some bushes and reducing high-grade jet gas with one thing plant-based did something actual.

I just like the tickling of conscience, although. Like possibly some dim consciousness of CO2 air pollution and the long-term penalties could spur extra of us to behave past posing.

I considered all that lately in a Snowmass lodge that makes a deal of sustainability in the way in which of furiously pounding one’s personal again about it at 8,500 toes, furnaces blasting. Certain, I’m joyful saving the planet by letting the beds go unmade one other day, having a recycling bin within the room, and don’t thoughts that the lights go off once I pull my card key from a room slot, although I’m fairly good about turning off the lights myself.

This whereas wrestling with the additional thick plastic wrapping round a flowery Keurig pod to place in a principally plastic coffeemaker, different grievous examples of fossil gas air pollution.

However these locations require a sure stamp of distinctiveness, too, I suppose. And isn’t this emblematic of the true world we stay in? We’re not going with out espresso. Sorry.   

I do know, an actual local weather warrior would have skipped this brew, saving the planet from the ramifications of 1 much less bundle tugged aside and quaffed. I drank my cup with too little remorse and indulged as a substitute in refreshed amazement on the steep rise in marketing campaign funding. Now that may be a most ever, a worst ever.


There was a time when precise voter fraud dominated the metropolises, simply as Jim Crow dominated the agricultural South, via Tammany Corridor in New York Metropolis and the like within the different huge cities, whether or not with improper affect or plain ol’ poll stuffing and actually suspicious counting overseen by get together bosses. 

An irony is that the cleanest election ever, with the most effective safeguards, procedures and talent to recount, nicely, that’s the one most doubted — not less than by rank partisans who couldn’t abide the outcomes.

However I don’t for a second imagine that 70% of earnest Republicans mistrust the counts. I’m extra cynical than that. That is extra about willingness to press a political benefit and to be in with the larger tribe. We’re people, we have now to belong. Screw logic. Now that makes extra sense.

As at all times, the Republican areas will are likely to elect Republicans, and Democratic areas will elect Democrats, counted by the identical cautious counters in professionalized election workplaces. Shut elections get recounted, and sometimes sufficient recounted once more with wonderful accuracy. Arizona’s ninjas for Trump discovered much more votes for Biden, although no bamboo. That was type of humorous.

The larger payoffs for skilled partisans lie in gerrymandering and present majorities in state legislatures passing voting legal guidelines to favor them and discourage voters from the opposite get together. We’ll begin to see the effectiveness of the latter this Election Day. Each are timeless arts practiced by Machiavellian Democrats as a lot as Republicans. There’s no trigger to dab sainthood on one or the opposite. They’re equally ruthless.

However watch. Our horror present will play out once more Tuesday, after which … aid. All of the drama will fade in days, the joyful ending for the victorious, the darkish ideas of bag packing for the vanquished.

Primarily, although, we’ll just about overlook, not less than for awhile. However after all there would be the sequel, certainly the worst but.

Aspen Occasions Editor Don Rogers will be reached at [email protected]

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