Things That Never Happened…BUT COULD HAVE!

Episode One: Gore Beats Bush

Florida, November, 2000. In our present reality, Circuit Court Judge Sanders Sauls, chosen by random selection for the case, halts the South Florida ballot counting. He is overturned and admonished by the Florida Supreme Court, but by then there isn’t time for enough ballots to be recounted before the U.S. Supreme Court quashes the recount and Gore concedes the presidency.

But here’s what could have happened:

Florida, November, 2000. Judge Sauls did not happen to be chosen for the case. Instead, Judge Terry Lewis was selected. Judge Lewis allowed the recount to go forward and Al Gore ended up with several hundred more votes than George Bush by the time the U.S. Supreme Court would issue a ruling to stop the recount.

President Gore incorporates much of President Clinton’s national security infrastructure. The September 11th attacks are thwarted due to the combination of better competency than the Bush team and the lack of collusion by Dick Cheney. The U.S. does not invade Iraq or Afghanistan. Thousands of American lives that would have been lost are not. Nearly one and one half million Iraqis who would have died did not. However, the U.S. continues the strict sanctions against Iraq, causing the deaths of millions of different Iraqis, mostly children.

Al Gore promotes the fight against global warming from the White House. However, he never produced the film An Inconvenient Truth, so the truth seems even less convenient to the public. There is also such bitter Republican resentment against his presidency that his attempts to save the climate are unsuccessful.

However, the child of an American National Guard soldier who would have not been born in the old reality meets the child of an Iraqi who also would not have otherwise been born. They fall in love and grow up to be brilliant engineers who find a solution to our energy needs and a way to clean up the planet that bypasses resistance from entrenched interests. It involves bionic sea kelp.

Gore continues Clinton’s economic policies, avoiding the Great Recession. Americans become fairly complacent. They are not so interested in “change.” Barack Obama is not elected President, but neither is Joe Lieberman whom Americans find annoying in any reality. Instead, John McCain, sensing the apparent inevitability of a continuation of Democratic dominance in Presidential politics, switches parties and runs for President. However, his running mate, John Edwards, who looked so promising at first, turns out to have been a bad pick. McCain loses to Jeb Bush.

—–

Next time: Beta Beats VHS!

3 Responses to Things That Never Happened…BUT COULD HAVE!

  1. Johnnnny B. says:

    Yes, I spend w-a-a-a-a-y too much thinking about this.
    The big one for me is JFK-Vietnam.
    As a small aside, recently I came across a 2006 book called “The Unspeakable” (I guess it was writable).
    Anyway, the author did all this research on JFK, Lyndon Johnson, and Vietnam and came to the conclusion that JFK, while engaging in typical capitalist shenanigans, actually had no desire nor intention to send hundreds of thousands of soldiers into Vietnam.
    It was startling what he found.
    Did you know that Jackie Kennedy and Robert Kennedy sent a letter to Kruschev in 1964 saying that the right wing had JFK killed and that LBJ was beholden to the military so that there would be a bad war scare for the rest of LBJ’s term?
    The KGB released the letter in 1995, which was in their archives.
    It was delivered by an old JFK friend to the Kremlin during a 1964 tourist trip.
    Nobody cares about it, of course, but by all means keep blogging.

    • EricIndiana says:

      Well, I had heard that RFK had told the Kremlin that the right wing had killed his brother. I was just thinking about JFK tonight when I was thinking about how to end this piece. I thought that saying “Next Episode: What if (insert assassin’s name here) had missed?” or something like that – maybe for Robert Kennedy. Anyway, I thought it was too serious, so I ended with the far more obscure Beta Vs. VHS thing that only readers over 40 or so will get. That required me to write “Gore Beats Bush” at the start, to balance out the joke at the end, although it’s a bit of a spoiler.

      So there you have it.

  2. [...] Things That Never Happened…BUT COULD HAVE! [...]

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