Blame Alexander Hamilton

At first I was feeling ashamed of my country for choosing a lying narcissistic ignoramus as its president but I cheered up when I checked the paper. In fact, we didn’t. Hilary won the popular vote—what in other countries they just call “the vote”—by around 400,000 votes. So congratulations America. We chose the diligent professional idealist after all. Not by much. Gore beat Bush by around 500,000, but a lot more than Kennedy beat Nixon by. Of course, Trump will still be president courtesy of the Electoral College. Thanks Alexander Hamilton. The body that was supposed to be a final check on the impulsiveness of the mob will instead subvert the will of the people by blindly casting their ballots for the winner of their state’s contest. This was not what Hamilton had in mind. He thought they would be a body of informed citizens who would ratify and clarify the opinion of the people. He was indignant later in life when the College simply passed on their states’ vote totals as they do now. It was not what he intended. So we have the worst of both worlds. The College neither underwrites the will of the people nor deliberates wisely. And the minority gets the win. Only in America.

(But Hillary still won, so though our system stinks, at least we’re not idiots.)

Author: leonardrysdyk

Leonard Rysdyk is the author of more than a dozen novels, stories, articles and poems. His work has appeared in many publications including Snow White, Blood Red, The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, Aboriginal Magazine and the New York Review of Science Fiction. A professor at Nassau Community College, he teaches literature (including science fiction), cultural history (including the history of science) and is an acknowledged innovator in the field of Computer Aided Instruction (CAI), a subject on which he has lectured and consulted.

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