On losing and losers

The world is full of people who dream of being Dictators, Absolute Monarchs, Sultans, Potentates, Tsars, Grand Viziers, Crown Princes, Pharaohs, Doges, Emperors, God-Emperors, Fuhrers, Duces, Presidents For Life, Messiahs and sometimes even Antichrists. Such people rarely end well. Such rulers may resent democracy for removing them from power before they can fulfil the great mission for which divine providence has apparently somehow ordained them but… Democracy is actually a pretty sweet deal for them.

When you lose an election you get to retire from public office and use your fame, or infamy, to make an easy living touting books, lectures, newspaper columns or whatever tat you choose. You don’t get strung up by your successor, who didn’t even need to have you murdered to become your successor. Leave (moderately) quietly and there need be no final moment in a damp bunker under Berlin or dangling from the forecourt of an Italian garage. You won’t even go to jail unless you tried to steal from the country. (You didn’t try to steal from the country, did you?)

There is no shame in losing an election. Doing so is an essential part of participating in democracy. There is no shame in demanding scrutiny of the electoral process and in requesting recounts when results are genuinely close or unclear. There is no shame in fighting hard and losing fair and square.

You know what there is shame in though?

When you lose two elections in a row and insist that you won; When you try to disenfranchise as many voters as possible and discourage those who remain from voting with misinformation and outright intimidation; When you appoint henchmen to interfere with the process of campaigning, voting or counting; When you encourage armed mobs to interfere with the process of campaigning, voting or counting; When you contest valid results without any just cause based on nothing more than stuff you literally just made up; When you cast doubt on the principles of democracy itself. Yeah, that is a cause for shame.

But you know what the biggest shame of all is?

When you cheated as hard as you could, when you lied as much as you could and then some, when you pulled out all the stops and went full ham on the villainy, and yet you still lost! That is when the whole world knows that you are both a loser and an arsehole. Most people hate you for everything you (pretended to) stand for and, even those who don’t hate you for that, hate you for being a crooked loser who tarnished the values you (pretended to) stand for.

So, congratulations to Donald Trump on your stunning achievement. You have done what I never thought possible. You have made Richard Nixon look both competent and honest by comparison!

Take a gold star and don’t let the door hit you up the fat, flabby arse on the way out.

You didn’t try to steal from the country, did you?

Did you?

November 5, 2020. Politics, Sensible.

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