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Mutiny of the Middle?

Posted on Monday, February 26, 2024
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by Barry Casselman
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30 Comments

AMAC Exclusive – By Barry Casselman

mutiny word in a dictionary. mutiny concept.

The political center in American politics is a large but often elusive voter bloc, frequently decisive in elections as it adapts itself to the constantly changing social and economic environment.

To understand how this political center fits into the overall structure of American politics, it is helpful to return to middle-school science class, and specifically to look at how the magnetic north and south poles respond to the Earth’s volatile geological change.

There are two sets of poles on Earth. The geographic ones are abstract mathematical points that do not change. The real geologic poles, often a notable distance from the abstract ones, are determined by the earth’s magnetic forces, which are constantly changing, and therefore are themselves changing their location. Over long intervals, the two poles even flip, and the south pole becomes the north pole. Humans have survived these very rare flips, but if one occurred now, modern civilization could be upended.

Some political strategists would have us believe that, like geographic poles, voters are merely abstractions that will remain fixed, unchanging. But the reality is that, like the Earth’s geologic poles, voters can behave in unanticipated ways.

The 2024 presidential election appears to be one of those occasions when the traditional electoral model is being taken to its far edges, and this is creating a rare moment when, seeing only unacceptable choices, the usually invisible sector of the middle electorate mutinies against the political establishments which have frustrated them.

This theme has often been explored in drama, film and literature. But two historic events, the Kiel Mutiny (imperial Germany, 1918) and the Potemkin Mutiny (czarist Russia, 1905) actually led to far-reaching political consequences.

As of this writing, it seems that the nomination contests of the two major parties are over, barely after they have begun. Incumbent President Joe Biden, despite his age, physical frailty, and persistent low voter favorability, has been imposed on the party of Democrats. An incumbent running for re-election rarely has serious opposition within his or her own party, but rarely, if ever, has someone like Joe Biden come for re-election to the voters with so many negatives. Poll after poll among Democrats shows they want another candidate; and poll after poll shows Biden losing the general election to any major Republican opponent — especially now to the likely GOP nominee, former President Donald Trump.

Trump himself enjoys continued strong support among the new base of the Republican Party, but he is bitterly opposed by a notable number of the old GOP base who find him distasteful and politically unacceptable. When the 2024 campaign began, there was some possibility that a new, younger conservative figure, most notably Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, would lead the 2024 GOP ticket.

Using legal tactics, however, Democrats were determined to keep Trump off the 2024 ballot, or failing that, to use criminal proceedings to wound him so deeply with voters that he could not win in the general election, even against Joe Biden.

The result of this unprecedented campaign, however, was to revive Trump’s support with his base and among many voters who had not supported him previously, who saw the string of criminal indictments and a national legal effort to keep him off several state ballots as dangerously hyper-partisan and a threat to the rule of law.

This is the kind of political environment which has historically created much interest in third party presidential tickets.

The few Democrats who actually spoke up and acted against Biden’s renomination have been successfully suppressed by the liberal party establishment, but could easily pose a threat to the presidential ticket in 2024 running as third party candidates. Most notable of these are Robert Kennedy, Jr., and Congressman Dean Phillips.

West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin might have had some appeal, but he has announced he won’t run for president in 2024. Green Party and socialist-style parties are already on many state ballots.

On the conservative side, there will be Libertarian and Constitution Party candidates. Most notable of third-party efforts, the new No Labels Party, is already on several state ballots, and its leaders say they will have a prominent Democrat and a prominent Republican on their ticket.

Even if centrist or middle voters do not express themselves with a third-party vote, he or she has several other significant choices to attempt a mutiny in the 2024 presidential election. Perhaps the most significant of these is simply staying home or choosing not to vote for president while making choices down-ballot.

Many voters are already hostile to party propaganda, and skeptical of most establishment media. So-called fake news and AI have created doubt about social media and the internet in general. With the formal part of the 2024 campaign barely begun, American politics, especially for the middle or centrist voter, are in unprecedented disarray.

Mr. Trump’s trials are ahead, as are more inevitable examples of Mr. Biden’s aging and physical frailty. A very large number of American voters wanted other choices, and prevented from having them, are likely to stage an historic political mutiny in 2024, the forms of which are still unknown, and the consequences of which we cannot yet truly anticipate.

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John Bass
John Bass
1 month ago

Mutiny…please. If there was ever going to be a mutiny of any kind it would have been when the Democrats propped up diaper Joe and installed him in the White House.
Or to put it in simpler terms, fraudulently stole the election.

Trump 2024

uncleferd
uncleferd
1 month ago

When Joe Biden was elected the first time, his party certainly needed a voting process that would accommodate a good dose of “creativity”… and that’s exactly what no-chain-of-custody mail-in ballots gave them.
They’ll have something up their sleeves again this time, but I’m thinking the poll-watchers will as well.

Morbious
Morbious
1 month ago

The author most not know too many dem voters. They vote robotically and as robots are incapable of mutiny, which by definition requires freedom of choice. Biden is still around 40% approval. Let that sink in. Then recall that the media drove bush 2s approval to around 27%. Now thats mutiny. People lost faith in his war policies, with good reason. The surge was too late. It was even too late for McCain. Rs are capable of and willing to abandon their leaders (remember nixons approval in 1974) . The other side will vote party line without a second thought. Or a first one for that matter.

corbin douthitt
corbin douthitt
1 month ago

We have a TWO party system. Voting 3rd party- dilutes – USUALLY- the Conservative/GOP vote- Democrats vote en bloc in masses. Matters not who- they vote D.GOP is the first successful 3rd party ( 1854-)
“The Republican Party name was christened in an editorial written by New York newspaper magnate Horace Greeley. Greeley printed in June 1854: “We should not care much whether those thus united (against slavery) were designated ‘Whig,’ ‘Free Democrat’ or something else; though we think some simple name like ‘Republican’ would more fitly designate those who had united to restore the Union to its true mission of champion and promulgator of Liberty rather than propagandist of slavery.” ”
The elections of 1854 saw the Republicans take Michigan and make advances in many states, but this election was dominated by the emergence of the short-lived American (or ‘Know-Nothing’) Party. By 1855, the Republican Party controlled a majority in the House of Representatives. The new party decided to hold an organizing convention in Pittsburgh in early 1856, leading up to the Philadelphia convention.
by 1888 it was called the Grand Old Party.
Today and for the last 70 years I have observed politics- the GOP has been mealy mouthed, whiney, a ‘no policy but anti-Democrat ‘ party. The Dems play Rugby on asphalt while the Repubs play flag ball with cushions.
As a Fraternity brother taught me- I have one thing to say about that -“Pitiful, Pitiful Pitiful”.

anna hubert
anna hubert
1 month ago

Somehow I can’t see a new rabbit being pulled out of the hat might be too obvious but I can see new Vice president put in the place and as soon as Biden wins the election medical issues will come up and bingo Coup accomplished

Letts Brandon
Letts Brandon
1 month ago

The author, if a politician, would be labeled a RINO. All of his premises about Trump are based in lies he willfully acknowledges yet still gives them merit. No one is forcing Trump upon the people except the people who support him. He is opposed by the establishment that controls both parties and are doing everything they can to get rid of him except assassination and I’m sure that is on the books and will be used if they think they can get away with it. Trump is and always has been the peoples candidate and that is what the powers that be don’t like about it. Even with Trump winning the next election they still have already destroyed it as a second term with their dictator Joe Biden by putting a stop to everything Donald started before. The best we can hope for is another 1st term and it will only be a threat if we can have another non-establishment candidate win in 2028. This seems like wishful thinking and a long road to travel compared to the traditional way of removing the enemy which I am in favor of. But if this is the road you choose you had better get off your arsses and do it because the left will be using every weapon in their arsenal, and probably a few new ones, to put an end to this country and may still put us in a traditional war before they rule completely.

Stephen Russell
Stephen Russell
1 month ago

Dems &Leftists for the DC Estd vs MAGA
Elites for Status quo

Lady J
Lady J
1 month ago

Ever heard of a write-in ballot?

Nancy Hildebrandt
Nancy Hildebrandt
1 month ago

I like the metaphor of the geographic vs. magnetic poles and I was waiting for you to lead up to a discussion of RFK Jr. Instead his name got tossed out with Dean Phillips, with no discussion of what his polling numbers look like. I personally plan to vote for him as long as he’s in the race. He’s a populist with a long history of fighting the status quo for the sake of the little guy. If Democrats and Republicans can’t tolerate each other, maybe we can coalesce around fighting back against elites.

gus
gus
1 month ago

oooo, I love the diaper (aka mush mouth) Joe moniker! Cudos!

johnh
johnh
1 month ago

I am glad that Haley is staying in the race & primarily for the reason that something happens with Trump prior to 2024 election. It seems to me that Haley with 40% of votes in SC primary should be noted & a little worry to Trump camp.

LHM
LHM
1 month ago

I certainly am not a Biden supporter. But Mr.Trump has insulted me on all fronts: as a woman, a military vet/retiree, a believer in diversity, a believer in God (not the one Mr.Trump thinks he is), and many more, I cannot support him as my Republican choice. I have been rudely shoved to that middle. I’m unsure at this point on what to do in this election. There is no clear choice for me at this point. It makes me very sad and disappointed that our divided country has become what it has. A choice between an old narcissistic maniac and a weak man too old for the job is no choice at all.

An older blonde women laughing in the kitchen with a grey haired man.
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