Now That Trump’s Trashed The Paris Climate Accord: Isn’t This Enough To Discuss Changing The Presidential Election System?

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. When will our reasonable leaders, progressive and moderate ― even clearheaded conservatives ― come to grips with the reality that we have an unelected, dysfunctional president, selected by an archaic, outmoded Electoral College that must be abolished or circumvented?

When are reasonable commentators, progressive and moderate ― and even clearheaded conservatives ― going to stop using the excuse “Well, the people elected Trump” in response to the damage he continues to do?

Forget lawsuits and investigations for the moment. Even if his campaign and administration were legally pristine, the policies and appointees (including a supreme court justice) coming forth from this White House and the man I call Trump the Pretender, were NOT endorsed by most people, in spite of what commentators and political leaders continue to say.

Yes, assuming he survives the investigations underway in congress and the criminal inquest by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, he ascended to the presidency in a legal manner, not by popular choice, but only thanks to narrow-minded and bigoted philosophies held by short-sighted founding fathers who forged the Electoral College. They counted Negroes as 3/5 of a man, denied women and non-property holding white men the vote. Over time, these inequities and wrongful decisions were eventually rectified by constitutional amendments, legislation and court decisions. Our nation similarly evolved, at least legally, past prejudice against black men and women, mandating that schools be integrated. It also turned a corner on the substandard manner we treated gay men and women. They now have full citizenship, allowing us to gain their expertise and courage in the military and are permitted to marry their loved ones.

Yet, because the Electoral College is still part of our system, no matter what he says or does, Trump the Pretender’s actions continue to be justified, almost helplessly, by leaders and commentators who otherwise decry his statements and policies, with the rationale that the people elected him, implying the people approved of what he wanted to do.

The people did NOT choose him. Hillary Clinton received close to 3,000,000 more votes than the man currently in the White House. What does that say? It says 3,000,000 more American citizens did NOT want the policies or political sensibilities of the men and women he’s appointing, so why can’t our political leaders and major commentators at the very least in the midst of their analysis of his presidency stop using the argument that the people voted for Trump, that whatever Trump is doing, the people elected him.

The Electoral College selected him.

Why can’t our leaders and reasonable commentators get their heads out of the sand and discuss whether, in light of everything that’s happened, most recently his decision to pull out of the Paris Climate Accord, in spite of his Secretaries of State, Defense, Energy and daughter Ivanka urging him to stay in, the time might be perfect to debate changing our presidential election system to popular vote.

Why didn’t they counter Trump economic advisor Stephen Moore’s outrageous claim on CNN that Trump’s Paris pull-out was his grateful acknowledgment of “an almost national referendum on this....voters voted against it.”

Except, almost 3,000,000 more voters voted for the Accord, yet NO ONE on the panel, including David Gergen and Robert Reich, called him on it.

Why do they just accept this relic of 230 years ago as inviolate, that it can’t be changed, even as so many injustices have been eliminated? Why do they accept the notion that it’s okay for geographically large areas with small populations to have a disproportionate advantage over states with large groups of citizens, that it’s okay to cast aspersion on cities with large numbers, apparently favoring the views of those in small states? That it’s all right Americans are treated differently depending upon where they live, and that they’re more American in the South and Midwest than those on the coastline? That it’s fair for minority views on national issues to trump differing opinions held by more people.

We have to stop this outrage, and Trump the Pretender should make it easier for us to do that, by holding rallies and demonstrations to get legislators and governors in states such as Michigan, Wisconsin, Connecticut, Colorado, New Mexico, Oregon and Pennsylvania to join ten states and D.C. which already ratified the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact. It awards each state’s electoral votes to the national popular vote winner.

I’ve written to all the Democratic Senators and some fair-minded Republicans through their press/communication representatives, presuming the message would go through easier, urging their bosses to speak up and increase the volume for a cause that, with everything else going on, has been quiescent. I’ve heard back from quite a number of them and will continue to press the issue.

It’s not easy to pass a constitutional amendment, but this Compact can make it happen, since states control the methodology of their electoral votes.

We have to drum it into everyone’s head over and over again, just as surely as supporters of school integration, women’s suffrage and gay rights have done. But it cannot be done effectively without support from our political leaders and at least acknowledged as something to consider by TV journalists like Anderson Cooper, Chris Matthews, Brian Williams, Rachel Maddow, Lester Holt, Andrea Mitchell, Dana Bash, David Muir and others, including editors of newspapers, magazines and online groups. By remaining silent they are complicitly endorsing a system that is undemocratic and unjust, which must be eradicated.

Write your representatives to change our presidential election system to popular vote by whatever means is reasonable, one that will take effect as quickly as possible.

Michael Russnow’s website is

Check out Russnow’s novel, Hollywood on the Danube on all Amazon sites and Kindle

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Comment by koshersalaami on June 3, 2017 at 11:49pm

I'm not drawing a conclusion here. What this appears to add up to is that Gabbard doesn't really like gay marriage personally but doesn't believe her own opinion on the matter should drive her stance on policy because that would be a violation of civic freedoms and so she votes for gay rights. Amy, if this is the case, are you ok with it? 

This is NOT a loaded question. I'm treating you as an authority on gay sensitivities here. 

Comment by Token on June 4, 2017 at 2:26am

Hmmmmmmm...... I appear to have been deleted

Oh well, as I said:

One of these days I'll write up the reasoning behind the electoral college, but just for a late night amusement, I'm going to address the notion that "Blue market states" California and New York "pay for" the "red working class states"

That's absolutely true, in the same sense that the "Master" of a slave plantation "paid for" the food clothing and shelter of his slaves. the blue coastal cities derive their wealth in the marketing of  products and commodities produced and sent on to the city by working class wage slaves to the monopoly markets controlled by bankers and capitalists who set both the price paid for the products, and the inflated profit they reap when the products are sold on to the mass/world market.

Which may or may not be the way of the world, but it certainly would not seem to be something that a good socialist should boast about. Especially since, should things become too disagreeable, coastal cities would rather quickly find the price of food, water and power ,all supplied by “redneck states' , rising right on up to whatever the cities could pay,,, and more.

Rest assured Nevada and Arizona could find uses for the waters of the Colorado River, should Los Angeles be unable to afford them, as could the power grids of the east and midwest find uses for the electricity that New York and Philadelphia could no longer afford.

As for Corn, Wheat, Beef? Can you say Soylent Green?

And as for the notion that slaves were counted as 3/5ths of a man because of any denigration of personhood, quite the opposite. The southern states would have had the slaves count as full members of the population, to secure the legislative power of the largest possible population count, while at the same tile denying the slaves any right to participate in that suffrage. The Non slave states rightly pointed out that the slave numbers would simply be used to strengthen the power of their masters, and demanded tat slaves not count as population at all, since they were in all other ways treated as cattle.

The 3/5ths number was reached as a “compromise”, not because the founding fathers regarded slaves as any less than human, but because their masters sole reason for treating them as citizens in that one instance was so tat the masters could exercise the slaves votes as their owner. (much as the many wived sheik is said to have welcomed womens suffrage, because it simply gave him as many more votes as he had wives, since he would cast their ballots for them.

I'll get back to you on the reason for the electoral college,consider it in light of the Master and Plantation model..... consider well what happens should the working class slaves become too disgruntled.


Hmmmmmm........did you just delete me? Interesting. All the more reason why the founding fathers were wise to include the Electoral College as a Backstop against mob action, regional or otherwise.

The US is NOT a Democracy, Mr Russnow, it is a Federal Republic. The sort of debate stifeling action you just took is one of the reasons that Minorities are guaranteed protections against the tyranny of a majority, for example the population of a less populous state against the tyranny of a larger one.

The checks and balances built into the Constitution are there to prevent such twaddle as atempting to destoy the structure of the Union as a REPRESENTATVE REPUBLIC under the ignorant twaddle of the notion that somehow it "OUGHT" to be a "Democracy"

It is not.

To protect it from the precipitate and thoughtless mob actions of such rabble rousing is why it never will be,


Not entirely sure what Old Mike meant by deleting me, but if he cares to explain, I'm here, if he doesn't, I really didn't expect any more from him.

This is more a small example of why th electoral college WON"T go away, largely because people like me understand why it is the way it is. I don't mind working the fields, but to paraphrase Bill maher, I ain't gonna be ordered around by a bunch of .........

Comment by JMac1949 Today on June 4, 2017 at 6:18am

The Electoral College was designed to prevent populist demagogues from being elected to POTUS and over the last two hundred thirty years it's worked for the most part.  In 2016 not so much.  The Beast "45' is as much a product of HRC's nomination and poor campaign management as demagoguery.

Comment by Maui Surfer on June 4, 2017 at 6:53am

Ahhh, my respect for K-Salaam's intellect and ability to read into folks' between the lines true feelings behind their words continues to grow. So, it wasn't even that hard to get towards the truth at all here, and the MauiTime article, while current and 'official', merely scratches the surface. It is an interesting word to use, but Gabbard is, of all things, a total Fake. Summarizing- She grew up in an actual cult, the real kind, freaky, strange, lots of examples of psychological and also physical abuse. Anti-gay stances were a YUGE part of her upbringing from Day 1, and even a cursory review shows she still holds them but is, FRANKLY, using her Polynesian heritage to FAKE what are Hawaii's hicks who, like Red Staters for Drumpf, believe what they want to believe when told to do so and have VERY LITTLE actual knowledge of their own. They will naturally vote for a Samoan every time, and FRANKLY, it is not hard to figure out why any more than why so many white supremacists join the KKK. Tulsi instinctively knows this and plays them the same way Karl Rove plays fundies. Now, the cult itself does not get press here in 2017- but if one goes back to 1977, as SBA loves to point out I am no spring chicken, you start to get a clear picture of what went on and how we got here ... Gabbard is dangerous and, despite her military service, I sure would not want to be Gay and think she had my back in a fight. There's much more to tell here but, FRANKLY, that should be enough for anyone serious about LGBT issues as I think most of here actually are. The head of Hawaii's organization doesn't believe here- how much F'ing evidence do you need?

Obviously, individuals political preferences continue to influence how they see the whitewash that is US Herstory. Token, you and I aren't getting any younger, again as constantly pointed out as if it was a bad thing, or something one could stop and freeze frame! If so I would go back to 77- those were magic times quite unlike these despite a number of very strange cults in Hawaii at the time. However, the whole the MidWest can starve the country thing don't fly no more man. Hipsters grow their food in windows and on rooftops already, but that is nothing- solar powered grow lights are free to use once purchased, and ANYONE can grow whatever they need ANYWHERE- for free. No Seasons, no Sun necessary. Also, food itself is evolving. That Onaga which remains my favorite dinner is super expensive and hard to come by for fisherman, they live in deep holes in the open ocean whereas a 'soylent green' type foodstuff fully capable of supporting human life can easily be produced and manufactured, as is already happening on the Big Island, in the ocean or just in the lab. We won't ever starve again so that particular argument begins to hollow out. You know I grudgingly respect your POVs, these are simply trends that smart people are accelerating because no one trusts leadership like lemmings anymore, in my view, anyway.

Imua (Onward)

Comment by Safe Bet's Amy on June 4, 2017 at 7:12am

What this appears to add up to is that Gabbard doesn't really like gay marriage personally but doesn't believe her own opinion on the matter should drive her stance on policy because that would be a violation of civic freedoms and so she votes for gay rights. Amy, if this is the case, are you ok with it? 

No I am NOT okay with it.  That is an area in which she is VERY suspect.  The only reason I can accept her, based upon that issue, is that she has put her money where her mouth is and backed, co-sponsored and promoted numerous pro-LGBTQ bills & issues at EVERY opportunity.  

She differed greatly from both Obama's and Hillary's "evolution" in that regards (who both mouthed the words but didn't do a damn thing until the polls turned positive).  

So, yes....  it is a HUUUUUGGGGEEE  point of concern and contention.  The only reason it isn't a candidate killer is because her actions speak much louder then her prior words.  Instead of a litmus test think of it more as a dead man's switch.  One little bobble on ANY LGBTQ issue and she blows herself away.

As for the Hawaii Democratic Party LGBTQ Caucus?  THEY are every bit as suspect as she is!  The Democratic Party have repeatedly and continually taken every opportunity to attack her, ever since she flipped the DNC the bird.  The Hawaii Caucus literally reeks of DNC boot licking so their opinion is dubious at best.

I also could care less about how her father feels about the issue.  Bringing that up to me is simply attempting to smear some one with someone else's shit.   (Few people on earth are more homophobic than my own parents/relatives so that don't fly very far with me).  

BTW, if they truly want me to dislike her they should harp on the fact that she ultimately endorsed Hillary (after Sanders did).  

Comment by Maui Surfer on June 4, 2017 at 7:13am

OK, I'm not testing anyone overall, and K-Salaam has already shown his prowness in an area he has no way of experiencing, so, I am going to break ranks and finally bust out what REAL HAWAIIANS have been thinking and saying about Ms. Tulsi and her Trump-style gang of graft and grifters:

And, believe or not, this account is not even close to a deep dive:

Read it and weep, if you mistakenly thought she was by your side. E tu Brutus?

Comment by Safe Bet's Amy on June 4, 2017 at 7:18am

Maui Faker, the only reason I ever bring up your age is because to have done all of the things you SAY you've done and to have surfed every place you SAY you have you'd need to be at least 200 years old.  Congrats fro living that long...  I guess.

Comment by Maui Surfer on June 4, 2017 at 7:28am

So, you want me to apologize for accumulating the resources to pursue my own desires and live each year of my life like it was the last? HMMM. Ever think to observe professional surfing which I dedicated all to- it is called THE WORD TOUR for a reason. Sheesh, jealous and angry is no way to spend your time.

How's the Truth on Tulsi riding with you? We can discuss it here, or in Mundaca, Spain, or Tasmania, or even North Carolina, well, you may finally be starting to get it.

Comment by Maui Surfer on June 4, 2017 at 7:31am

Ha, WORD TOUR is obviously world tour, now that is an OS Freudian slip if there ever was one.

Michael, apologies, I did not set out to hi-jack this, said I wouldn't then did anyway, it has been long simmering under the surface and it seems your words finally triggered some truth on the subject, so, indirectly, thank you for that.

Comment by koshersalaami on June 4, 2017 at 7:34am

Well, Maui, there is the matter of her voting record. It's apparently quite good. 

Also, her conversion story is plausible - and backed by her voting record. One can have an epiphany, and it is entirely possible for anyone to conclude that I disagree with you but I will defend your rights with my last breath. That's basically the principle behind the existence of the ACLU. We can be reasonably sure that the lawyers who supported the right of Nazis to march through Skokie didn't like anything about Nazis, including their desire to march through a neighborhood of Holocaust survivors. 

Seeing Middle Eastern fundamentalist oppression in action on a daily basis could certainly heighten one's appreciation for how things are here and lead to the realization that even if one favors the viewpoint of oppressors, it's still oppression. 

I don't live in her state. I'm not drawing a conclusion about her; I'm just talking about where the information I have so far leads me. Like Bernie on gun control, she's clearly no sheep. 

All of which leads me to two questions, one for you and the same one for Amy. Yours:

Do you have recent post-military evidence she'd turn on gays and, if so, what is it?


If Gabbard doesn't personally like gay rights but is committed to them on principle in spite of her feelings, do you trust her?

Amy, again, I am prepared for the time being to defer to your judgment here because you're the one with the most at stake.


I am not prepared to conclude that New York's wealth comes from Mississippi but, from a government standpoint, I'm afraid some of Mississippi's wealth comes from New York. In terms of geographic tyranny, there is already a screamingly major obstacle to that. It is called the United States Senate. I now live in New York (not urban New York - I'm in an area of small rather remote cities, which is to say you live closer to major shopping than I do), and my vote for Senator counts for considerably less than yours does. I can't conclude it's just to skew power away from one vote equaling one vote even more. I am in theory an equal citizen to you. 

I am perhaps more sensitive than than most because I have lived in DC, where people have no voting representation in Congress at all, in spite of the fact that the District has a greater population by itself than a few states with one Congressman and two Senators. As far as I'm concerned, this is the greatest current example of voter suppression of all. 


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