How do you know a President Gore would have been any better?

“How do you know a President Gore would have been any better?”

If we’re gonna go there, why not just make it an epistemological question? How can we know that we know anything, ever?

We don’t. We make educated guesses. (I can’t believe I’m actually saying this. I feel like I’m feeding a troll.)

My educated guess is that a President Gore would have been better, if only because I can’t imagine how he could have been much worse, and not just on the war front.

If your educated guess is that he would have been more likely than not to be as bad or worse than Bush, then I respect the consistency of your position, but I don’t even know how to respond to it. It is simply where our realities diverge. We might as well be arguing for and against the existence of ghosts. Saying that Gore is likely to have been as bad or worse as the Bush presidency is…I don’t know what it is, but it’s either not based in reality, or it’s based on criteria I won’t pretend to understand.

As for whether or not Nader tipped the election is besides the point, and not one I raised. But you’re arguing that people who might vote for Clinton instead vote for Stein. That could tip the election to Trump, and I can make an educated guess that he will cause more people’s lives to suffer than under Clinton, both for the next four years due to a Republican-held legislature, and many more after that, due to who is likely to be appointed to the Supreme Court. I feel Trump’s dangerousness is so self-evident that it doesn’t matter how bad Clinton is, she will always be the better candidate, and there will always be a moral imperative to elect her.

If Trump’s manifest terribleness isn’t so frightening that you’re willing to risk his being the president by supporting Stein, I guess we’re at the conversational end of the road, because where can we go? Our worlds are different. I don’t think you’re reasonable, or properly taking responsibility for the impact of your vote and your voice, but I’m sure you feel the same way about me.

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