Joe Biden is not really what’s on the ballot and neither is Donald Trump.

I wrote last Fall about whether Biden should drop out of the race or not. You know, back when that had some semblance of a possibility to be done in a rational manner. I also wrote that once Hamas attacked Israel there was no way for Biden to win. There was never a path he could have taken that wouldn’t have either alienated supporters of Israel or alienated anyone with a conscience that is rightly horrified at the situation in Gaza that could have held together the Democratic coalition that brought him into office. That was just the final nail in the proverbial coffin because even before October 7th it looked like Biden had already lost enough support to not be able to win the next election. 

Personally, on domestic issues it’s hard for me to understand the animosity that so many people have for him. I get that he doesn’t have a great history in the Senate but he did win the 2020 primary fair and square and once he had done so he built a coalition with all of the other candidates. He let Bernie Sanders put together bills that could have transformed the middle class and I believe he would have signed them if they could have made it through the House and Senate. But they didn’t and he still managed to cobble together what eventually did get passed against immense odds. While to me the Infrastructure Bill, the CHIPS Act and the Inflation Reduction Act are not nearly enough to counter 50 years of trickle down economics, they are also the largest investment into the middle class in my lifetime. So sure, Biden also did a lot I disagreed with but he did also get that done.

OK, so now fast forward and here we are with everyone under the sun is calling for Biden to drop out. Personally, in theory, I like the idea. People are clamoring for another option that isn’t either of these guys. And, in theory, wouldn’t it be great to deliver on that? But then there’s the reality of the process. It’s chaos and there’s also a Kamala problem. Not only is she not an energizing option, she can probably surpass that, but more importantly she represents the Biden administration and all of the baggage (ahem, Israel) that goes with it. Any non-administration option (Cough, Whitmer) could start with a clean slate. In fact Whitmer could be the poster child for what happens when Trump opens his mouth and spews hatred, you know, since she was almost assassinated and all. So sure it would be great if the DNC could figure out a way to elect a new candidate with a process that doesn’t look like they don’t know what the hell they’re doing. But let’s face it, what are the odds of that?

As long as that’s the case and the whole thing looks like a debacle, which it already is, then there’s no way a Democrat can win this election. Don’t get me wrong, any Democrat, a dead fish, a paper cut out of Che Guevara, a shower curtain, anything you can think of will get at least 5 million more votes than Trump. But nothing is going to eke out a win in the Electoral College unless enough people in the swing states decide that Trump is just so out of bounds for the future of this country that they have to vote against him.

So we’ll see what the DNC figure out but for now I think we have to switch the conversation. Like I said we have 10 Million articles out today talking about how Biden should drop out, just adding fuel to the possible chaos that will insure a Trump win. Instead maybe we should talk about the real problem that makes us worried about Biden in the first place. So what’s the problem you might ask? It’s not just Trump, four more years of a bumbling around Trump is survivable. I think the real problem is both obvious and completely hidden in plain sight. And also rigorously denied by Trump’s base as well as his co-conspirators. If we don’t win this election for the Democrats there won’t be future elections that matter. Let me put that last sentence in its own paragraph for emphasis.

If we don’t win this election for the Democrats there won’t be future elections that matter.

Or maybe all caps so it’s like I’m shouting.


Does that help? I get it, many people already think elections don’t matter. In fact almost 30% of all eligible voters don’t vote and many of them don’t bother because they think it’s pointless. Well it’s about to actually become pointless. I’ve written about Project 2025 since it published it’s manifesto last year and people just don’t seem to think that what it represents and proposes can actually happen here. Namely a truly organized and fascist state arising in America. Well, I hate to break it to everyone but it has already happened here. We didn’t call it fascism but it represented the same thing. We just happen to live in a small window of relative inclusiveness that is actually a complete anomaly from most of American history. For most of our history, and a decent amount now, America has been ruled by a small ultra rich minority that exploited labor and resources while leaving the majority of the population, or enough of it anyway, voiceless and powerless. For all of our history, against all odds, enough people have struggled to change that reality so that by 1965, when the Voting Rights Act was enacted, we finally became something that most of us would consider to resemble an actual Democracy. That’s right, I would argue we didn’t become what most of us would believe to be a Democracy until after 1965. That’s when, finally, the vast majority of us could make our voices heard, collectively pool our resources and make life better for everyone by our own reckoning. And in every step of the way to achieving that goal there were people trying to stop it and trying to reverse any and all gains. And right now those same forces are on the brink of taking power in a way we haven’t seen in generations. Trump just happens to be the vehicle that can help them seize that power.

So that’s what’s on the ballot. It’s real, I know, it sounds science fiction-y, but see we have a tendency to white-wash our history so it makes it hard to see things sometimes. Anyway, that’s what we should all be talking about. I’ll vote for Joe Biden’s ghost if I have to. I’d prefer Whitmer, but I’ll vote for anything that gives us some breathing room to regroup and think about how we can secure the advances that people have fought and died for in the past 250 years.

So once again, if you’re not familiar with Project 2025, and their plans to end our Democracy, then let me sum up quickly what the core of their agenda is. In case you forgot, America is a colony and its roots are in settler colonialism. Somehow in the face of that, many of us have tried over the years to do something different here. Basically, some people took Jefferson’s words about freedom and liberty or whatever he was talking about and decided to make it real. But for many others remaining a colonial power has always been the prize. Exploit the land at any cost, exploit the labor, and be in control. That’s what’s on the ballot, not old Joe, not bumbling Don, no, it’s the whole enchilada of what us modern humans consider to be Democracy. So one more time and I’ll also add a little clarification.

If we don’t win this election for democrats there won’t be future elections that matter. That is until at some point in the future we claw back free and fair elections somehow and we’ve seen what it took in the last 250 years to do that. Is America ready to do that again? Maybe the kids will be but is that really what we wanted for them?

“Sorry kids, we screwed up, it’s up to you now, good luck. We could’ve just voted our way out of this but, well, we we weren’t paying attention and we missed it. Sorry about that.”

Or we can snap out of it and vote against what’s right in front of us and then buy some time to get serious about shoring up what we’ve already achieved. That’s what’s on the ballot. A chance to keep working on this Democracy project without a generational setback so huge that we might not overcome it.