Our Long National Nightmare

There’s a date we’ve been looking forward to for awhile, a date we might not live to see, but one that holds great significance for America: One fine day in 2044, by current projections, white people will slip below half the population.

It’s been a long time coming. When we were born, under a 49-star flag, haoles like us accounted for almost 9 in 10 Americans, a number that held steady for generations, and wouldn’t start dropping significantly until 1990, when it was 8 in 10. The 2020 Census isn’t in yet, but we’re looking at 6 in 10 now.

We’ve been looking forward to 2044 because folks like us have really screwed the pooch in the Land of the Free, and it’s about time we got outvoted on our collective idiocy.

But we’re now realizing that we’ve been a tad naive about the March of History. The next two decades are gonna be a total bitch.

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We noted with pleasure the other day that there are now enough certified state elections to give Joe Biden 270 electoral votes.

We will probably make the same observation when members of the Electoral College cast their votes on December 14.

And again when their votes are counted by Congress on January 6.

We have been voting in presidential elections for forty years. Never before did the steps between election day and inauguration matter to us, or anyone, really. They were just part of the paperwork.

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Memo to the Future:

We don’t know what horrors you’ll be seeing — American pandemic deaths just passed a quarter-million here, and what was frozen on our planet is rapidly thawing — but we’d like to tell you about our week.

Remember the United States? The federal republic version, not the warring fascist and socialist versions, each claiming the name? Yeah, still here, this moment, anyway. But it came close!

That was our week, seeing how close it would come to falling apart.

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“It ain’t real on the ground,” we had told a friend on Friday after the respected website Decision Desk HQ called the race, “until it hits the airwaves.”

Lordy.

The moment was operatic, out of The Godfather, the networks simultaneously settling all family business, the sheer finality of it all.

And a moment later, the videos started flooding in.

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Armed Insurrection: 20-1

The President of the United States Erupts in a Flaming Pyre of Despair in the Rose Garden: 10-1

You Picked the Wrong Week to Stop Sniffing Glue: 3-1

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One of the popular online parlor games of late has been wondering whether Donald Trump will give up power if he loses.

You know how it works: Someone says he’ll just squat in the White House. Then Defenders of the System rush in to say that can’t possibly happen, the Secret Service will escort him from the grounds, and besides, his term ends January 20 one way or another, and if there’s any question about succession, Nancy Pelosi steps in.

Fear not! It’s in the rules!

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World War II — the American part of it — lasted less than four years.

It must have seemed like forever.

Time does that. We can measure time — by day, by year, by atomic second — but the experience of time is not the duration of time. If we’re having a good time, time flies, we don’t know where the time went. If we’re miserable, well…

It’s been a long time since November 2016. Less than four years.

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