Silent Majority

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One of the most irrefutable and radiant takeaways from the election is that it vividly illustrated the ever-increasing irrelevance and ineffectiveness of both the mass media and also celebrities when it comes to swaying and inspiring citizens on Election Day.

Never in my 54 years have I seen more editorials and PSAs (from a plethora of stars––everyone from Katy Perry, LeBron James, Natalie Portman and Robert De Niro to Lady Gaga, Bruce Springsteen, Alec Baldwin and every one of the late-night talk show hosts) urging people to get out and vote … and yet, by all indications so far, the 2016 Presidential election represented the lowest overall voter turnout in 20 years.

Not exactly something to smile about, but, by the same token, you could effectively argue that the trend toward not electing as President firmly-entrenched Washington, D.C., insiders (whether it’s McCain, Romney or Clinton) isn’t necessarily a “bad” thing at all, nor is it likely a trend that doesn’t continue in various political arenas. (Can people really be so “shocked” and “surprised” that Clinton failed to win those key swing states––not to mention garnering more than 5 million fewer popular votes than Obama did in 2012––when all the nationwide polls the past few years have shown that U.S. citizens have never been more dissatisfied and/or distrustful of our federal government in terms of what it’s doing, and how it’s doing it?!?)

By the way, there was a letter by Boise-based Senior Circuit Judge (Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals) Stephen S. Trott in the Idaho Statesman recently (“Electoral College Has a History, But Does It Have a Future?”) that does a terrific job of explaining how, when and why the Electoral College came to be in the first place, one that’s must-reading for anyone who isn’t familiar with it––easily one of the most concise and informative things I’ve read in a newspaper this year so far.

John Pluntze

Ketchum resident