It's Easy Debunking Idiocy, the Problem is It Never Stops


Claims of election fraud keep circulating, and circulating, and circulating.

Rational Debate Challenge Accepted

Twenty Smell Test Things

I was asked to respond to 20 Alleged Election "Facts" That Don't Pass The Smell Test by Andrea Widburg via AmericanThinker as presented on ZeroHedge.

1. Biden allegedly got 80 million votes, which is more than Obama received at his peak, in 2008 – and Biden did this despite losing minority voters to Donald Trump and trailing Trump in voter enthusiasm.

2. Biden broke 60 years of precedent by winning nationally despite losing prodigiously in bellwether states and counties. The last time this happened was when the mafia got out the vote for John F. Kennedy in 1960.

3. Trump had extraordinary coattails, so much so that even the New York Times admitted that the “Democrats Suffered Crushing Down-Ballot Losses Across America.” Think about that: Biden had no coattails and no enthusiasm, yet he allegedly won a record number of votes. Smells fetid to me.

4. Biden barely made it through the primaries, while Trump soared, with Trump’s performance being a historically sure sign of voter enthusiasm and probable victory – yet Biden, again, allegedly scored an equally historically strong victory.

5. Trump exceeded his original vote count by the largest margin for any incumbent in American history. He got 10 million more votes than before; by contrast, Obama, in 2012, got 3.5 million fewer votes than in 2008.

6. Trump’s support among blacks grew by 50%, while Biden’s fell below the important 90%-mark that Democrat candidates need to secure victory.

7. In the Rust Belt, Biden lost black support everywhere except in Detroit, Philadelphia, and Milwaukee. In those cities, every single black person apparently voted for Biden.

8. While pollsters can and do manipulate polling outcomes, non-polling metrics (historical norms such as the economy, enthusiasm, etc.) have never been wrong – only we’re being told that this year was the exception.

All of the above claims are mostly one and the same charge. Biden could not have gotten the votes.

Record Turnout

The fact is, a record number of votes – about 65 million – were cast via mail ballot in the 2020 general election.

These numbers were known in advance and we also knew in advance the numbers were overwhelming from Democrats. Trump said vote in person, so Republicans did.

Trump polarized the nation. Trump got the second most votes in history. 

Yes, Virginia, it is as simple as that. 

Some of the claims are totally nonsensical. For example, take claim number 7 where allegedly every single black person in Detroit, Philadelphia, and Milwaukee apparently voted for Biden.

When you toss around idiocy like that, you know where the rest of the claims are. 

Point number 6 may be accurate. So what? Trump lost suburban women. 

Does anyone remember Trump begging suburban women to love him?

Negative Coattails 

Trump did not have coattails. In fact it was the reverse.

Trump turned the election into a referendum on himself. He lost. 

A huge number of people did not vote for Biden, but rather against Trump. I stated that would happen in advance.

Voters on average were sick of Trump, but were rightfully fearful of what AOC and Warren policies might occur if Democrats won the whole shebang. 

This should be crystal clear. 

9. The fact that Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Arizona, Nevada, and Georgia simultaneously pretended to halt ballot counting while continuing to count is evidence of election fraud collusion.

10. Optical scanners were set to accept unverified, un-validated ballots.

11. The scanners were almost certainly programmed to fail to keep audit records.

12. In the contested states, the voting machines were alleged to have processed hundreds of thousands of ballots within a short time, which is a physical impossibility.

Points 9-12 

emphasis mine

Points 9, 10, 11, and 12 have no evidence. It's easy to make claims like "almost certainly programmed to fail to keep audit records," without stating what that even means. 

Note the word "alleged" in point 12. 

If there were delays in one county and not another, then guess what? A huge dump of votes get reported, not counted, all at once.

Point 9 is absurd. If there was any evidence of fraud collusion between for states, someone would have it. 

So we have more charges with zero evidence.

As explained as nauseum by the Georgia Secretary of State, signatures are verified, then the ballots are separated from the envelopes. 

There is no way to match signatures to ballots nor should there be, or the state would know how people voted.

How can people not be aware of the construct of a secret ballot. In light of the above what does "programmed to fail to keep an audit" even mean? 

The rejection rate was nearly the same in 2020 as 2018. 

The icing on the cake is the recount. If the machines were programmed to cheat, then it would have shown up in the manual recount, done by hand. 

Since the recount turned up no evidence of tampering, such claims are nonsense.

13. In Pennsylvania, statistically impossible numbers of late-arriving mail-in votes went to Biden.

14. Dominion and ES&S voting machines were created to have back doors and specific functions to manipulate votes either at the machine or over the internet.

15. Fox News’s behavior on election night (refusing to call pro-Trump outcomes while prematurely calling Arizona for Biden) was so abnormal that Vegas oddsmakers instantly assumed that the fix was in.

16. The allegedly late-arriving mailed-in ballots increased Biden’s equally alleged lead with statistically impossible perfection and stability.

17. There were anomalies in Virginia that suggested that computers were subtracting votes from Trump and, sometimes, giving them to Biden.

18. One analysis shows that voting machines in Michigan systematically removed votes from Trump and handed them to Biden. I saw a rebuttal (which I cannot locate now) that purported to debunk this but did so by using a different scale on the X-axis, which I found inherently suspicious.

19. Over 100,000 Pennsylvania absentee ballots were returned either a day after they were mailed out, on the day they were mailed out, or on the day before they were mailed out.

20. In all the contested areas, and at Dominion’s website, Democrats have been systematically failing to create or have destroyed all data that could be used to demonstrate fraud. This creates the legal presumption that the data do, in fact, show fraud.

Statistical Nonsense and Dominion Silliness 

Once again, the fact is, a record number of votes – about 65 million – were cast via mail ballot (also called absentee voting) in the 2020 general election.

Moreover, and as discussed in advance, absentee votes were counted last explaining the big dump. It was Democrats who voted by mail,. and anyone with an ounce of common sense knew those voted would be overwhelmingly for Biden. 

Point 14 is a rehash of a prior point. Once again, if there was was trap door, it would have been caught in the Georgia manual recount. 

The claims are so bizarre that even Fox News was supposedly in on it. 

All of the links point to clickbait conspiracy sites and other sites that make ridiculous charges over and over. 

Smell Test

Something is smelly alright, and it's claims of fraud with only allegations and no evidence.

Court Fact

Trump's lawyers when asked point blank by judges if they were making a case for fraud, backed down every time.

Every time.

Court of Public Opinion

If Trump had any real evidence of fraud, he would have presented it in court long ago.

It's easy to make statistically nonsensical claims and have a set of people believe them.

It's easy to make claims the machines were rigged. 

But where the hell is the proof?

Quite frankly, I expected more out of these 20 claims than a rehash of unproven charges most if not all of which have been thoroughly debunked before. 

This bit about Fox News and Las Vegas oddsmakers is truly bizarre. It just goes to show that one idiot making a bizarre claim can attract followers.

Occam's Razor

Rather than accept the obvious, Trump supporters are willing to believe any combination of stories, no matter how ridiculous. 

Fans of Occam's Razor here is your choice.

  1. Biden Won
  2. Trump was robbed by a combination of Dominion theft, a collusion between Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Arizona, Nevada, Georgia and Fox News, vote subtraction in Virginia, statistical impossibilities, late ballots, and a Republican Secretary of State in Georgia gone mad, all of the above without a shred of evidence, and Trump unwilling to tell the court there was any fraud! 

Trump Cult Syndrome (TCS)

Let's conclude with a simple idea.

  • If Trump had any real evidence of fraud, he would have presented it in a court of law long ago. 
  • Because Trump has no shred of evidence, he presents the case in the court of public opinion rather than a court of law.

The claims are so damn bizarre even Fox News and the Wall Street Journal won't touch them.

This is all very easy to see unless one is blinded by TCS. 


Comments (90)
No. 1-27
One-armed Economist
One-armed Economist

Occam's Razor even. Good job, nice to see you're up on that too

Enough, turn off TCS life support machines - they're wasting valuable electricity!


This is why we need to send the Dumpy voters to FEMA reëducation camps.
What is the point of spending taxpayer dollars on constructing them if we don't use them (just paraphrasing Fat Donnie from Queens here)?


People are lazy. They simply need to read the court opinions to see how these baseless claims have held up in a court of law. I gave up on zero hedge years ago. It's not reputable.


With Trump Occam's razor doesn't apply but Hanlon's razor often does


The main problem is that Trump supporters are treating Biden's election as an existential threat. They can't admit that Trump had major flaws, just like every other POTUS in our lifetimes. Biden is no communist, he's a banker friendly, MIC friendly, status quo guy. If you lived through Obama and Bush, you know what to expect from Biden. Trump was pretty much the same as those guys too, in policy if not rhetoric.

Couple this with unreasonable expectations going into the election and you see tens of millions of American adults stomping their feet like petulant children. It's a collective temper tantrum and it's not even for a good cause.


I was thinking of going through the list and responding by item number, but many of these are so stupid and are offered with no support or proof - what would be the point? It's not like any of the people that believe any of this will change their minds when you ask for proof and they go into their "Hugo Chavez and the lizard people" rant. The only hope now is that there are more people that believe in at least the idea of the democratic principles that our country is supposed to support than those that believe in their new cult leader. This election shows that the cult is strong enough to possibly topple one of the most powerful nations the world has ever seen. A scary prospect, but one that everyone should be preparing for - economically, mentally and physically.


You forgot to add that Trumpnuts believe there is a conspiracy against trump from the fbi, cia, nsa, pentagon, deep state, military industrial complex, the courts, some republican governors, all democratic governors, hugo chavez, fidel castro, george soros, the catholic church, free masons, some jews or all jews, the left, women, blacks, latinos, muslims, and on and on.

No one is on Trump’s side except the neo nazis but isnt that the way they want it?

Not that hard to see why Biden got more votes.

Wait till 2024 when millions of trump boomers die off, the howling will reach the moon when the democratic candidate gets 90 million votes and Republican gets half that...


I used to debunk lies in local social media like "Nextdoor" however these lies are like a Hydra, you debunk one lie and three more sprout up to take its place. It is much easier to lie than to take the time to research the facts to debunk the lie. I found that I couldn't keep up.

I don't have much confidence in the future of the United States when essentially half the country cannot tell the truth from a lie and Trump lied constantly throughout his entire term. Societies and countries that are built on lies do not last, no matter what the political policy is. One day there will be a fatal dose of reality.


Trump's last 4 years fired up voters--for and against.

But Trump's negatives outweighed Biden's negatives. Trumps negatives had gained all during his administration.

And Trump's negatives outweighed GOP legislature candidates negatives.

Biden won, Trump lost.

No Trump or Biden coat-tails.

End of story.

Jeff Larry
Jeff Larry

Another Pulitzer prize winning piece.

I can't believe how many people, brands and organizations willingly destroy years, to a lifetime, of accomplishment and goodwill over the shambolic Trump spectacle. Burning their own houses down to win an unwinnavle argument.

It's almost like they can't help themselves.


The black box of American success strikes again in its most unorthodox manner.


Mail in ballots are not absentee ballots. Absentee ballots are specifically for those voters who will not be in state for an election. Semantics maybe but there is a distinction.


It is indeed an endless battle. Truth, logic, and science vs conspiracy theories. One requires intelligence and a lot of hard work. The other requires nothing but a feeble mind.

What I find shocking is the huge numbers of feeble minded, particularly in the US. Perhaps, if they only pay attention to media sources that constantly shovel this shit (like Fox or ZH), that's what their brains end up being composed of.

No wonder America is full of Flat Earthers, Anti-Vaxxers, and Racists. And, there are enough of them that in 2016 they elected a President who promotes conspiracy theories and spends much of his time tweeting them and spewing lies.

Good people, like Mish, are becoming exhausted as they try to shine the light of truth on the feeble minded cult members, who are apparently blind.

America, how far you have fallen.


It is possible to live in an entirely alternative unverse today via your media choices.

And endless cycle of firing up your synapses in a way you like.

Brain structure...

...liberals have a larger ACC, and conservatives have a larger amygdala...

...The ACC has a variety of functions in the brain, including error detection, conflict monitoring1, and evaluating or weighing different competing choices. It’s also very important for both emotion regulation and cognitive control (often referred to as ‘executive functioning’) — controlling the level of emotional arousal or response to an emotional event (keeping it in check), as to allow your cognitive processes to work most effectively....

...The amygdala is part of the limbic system, the area of the brain associated with emotions. The amygdala is important for formation of emotional memories and learning, such as fear conditioning, as well as memory consolidation. Emotions significantly impact how we process events; when we encounter something and have a strong emotional reaction — either positive or negative — that memory is strengthened...

...In order for a person to embrace a cause or idea, it needs to be meaningful for them. Each type of person has a different way that they assign meaning and relevance to ideas. Let’s take liberals and conservatives, since we are theorizing that they are two distinct thinking styles: liberals would be more flexible and reliant on data, proof, and analytic reasoning, and conservatives are more inflexible (prefer stability), emotion-driven, and connect themselves intimately with their ideas, making those beliefs a crucial part of their identity (we see this in more high-empathy-expressing individuals). This fits in with the whole “family values” platform of the conservative party, and also why we see more religious folks that identify as conservatives, and more skeptics, agnostics, and atheists that are liberal. Religious people are more unshakable in their belief of a higher power, and non-religious people are more open to alternate explanations, i.e., don’t rely on faith alone.

So — for liberals to make a case for an idea or cause, they come armed with data, research studies, and experts. They are convinced of an idea if all the data checks out–basically they assign meaning and value to ideas that fit within the scientific method, because that’s their primary thinking style. Emotion doesn’t play as big of a role in validation. Not to say that liberals are unfeeling, but just more likely to set emotion aside when judging an idea initially, and factor it in later. Checks out scientifically = valuable. Liberals can get just as emotionally attached to an idea, but it’s usually not the primary trigger for acceptance of an idea.

Conservatives would be less likely to assign value primarily using the scientific method. Remember, their thinking style leads primarily with emotion. In order for them to find an idea valuable, it has to be meaningful for them personally. It needs to trigger empathy. Meaning, they need some kind of emotional attachment to it, such as family, or a group of individuals they are close to in some way....


Given the importance to many of the election, I am surprised not to find a detailed description of vote processing sequences know, the ones where you think "but how do I know that...".

So to invent a scenario, broaden the perception of lack of knowledge... how does anyone know if a few boxes of a thousand or more votes were not simply added to a store-room and the machines programmed as them having been read ? I mean... it's a lot more Occamish than trying to find ways to sneak them through signature verification or voter presence. That is what audit means, because the recount will match the fraud otherwise , for example.

It's funny to watch people who have no idea try to prove their point to themselves online, or maybe to each other ? Is that a form of insecurity... it's not surprising because those who are really going to steal an election are those that are not transparent and deny proper accountability - the very idea that the party one opted for having cheated being "too much to consider" I suppose. How do you say that nowadays in the US ... "Sad!" no ?

Obviously it will always be the vaunted winner who is challenged, and the only credible reply to accusation of fraud is to show that the voting system is transparent and fully accountable. To simply say "prove it" falls well short, instead you have to prove that your own presentation is credible. Hint , it isn't.


Good grief Mish, you and all your friends running around hugging and kissing one another in your condescending attitude with agreement on just about everything. Not the way your blog used to be. Anyway I mention this only because senator Ted Cruz of Texas warned about all this in a Senate hearing a year or two ago. So Tucker Carlson had Robert Epstein on his show a week or two ago. You can find the interview. Anyway Epstein, who did not vote for or even like Trump, reported that Google’s vote reminders to mostly all liberal and progressive Democratic candidates until Epstein’s research team called them on it, could have easily swung a minimum of 6 million votes to Biden and other Democratic candidates. Again I only mention this because of Senator Cruz’s warning about the power that Google and other high tech companies were going to have in the next election. So you should also be able to find his speech before you and all your friends want to challenge me on any of this. Mish I really wish you would be like you used to be was much more challenging and inspiring and just interesting. So sad absolutely everything is changing I fear.

Lance Manly
Lance Manly

Are these people even adults? I mean threating people is a crime and this guy is a lawyer. He should be disbarred. I guess you can say "I did not mean it".

"An attorney for President Donald Trump’s reelection efforts said on Monday that Chris Krebs, the former head of U.S. cybersecurity, should be “shot” for going against the president’s conspiracy theories and declaring the 2020 elections as secure.

“Anybody who thinks the election went well, like that idiot Krebs who used to be the head of cybersecurity,” said Trump campaign lawyer Joe DiGenova, “that guy is a class A moron. He should be drawn and quartered. Taken out at dawn and shot.”


Lie will spead half way around the world beore the truth gets its pants on

Jeff Dog
Jeff Dog

Federal rule of civil procedure 9b when you plead fraud it has to be with particularity. That means who, what, when, where, and how.


Another very good article, Mish. My answers:

  1. Trump was an extremely polarizing figure who not only motivated his supporters, he motivated many people to vote against him
  2. The fact that down ticket Republicans fared better than Trump is a sign that, while voters like Republican ideas, many despise Trump. If there was vote fraud, the down-ticket Democrats would have done much better than they did. Historically, fraudulent votes are "straight ticket" votes. Thus, the strength of the down-ticket Republicans is very, very strong evidence against fraud.
  3. Trump gained minority support, but has significant losses among white suburban women and seniors.

I don't find either of these surprising. I consider Trump a very evil man, and one who needed to go, but I do now support liberal progressive Democrat ideas at all. I was very pleased with the outcome of the election.


If this is idiocy (and it might be) then clearly it hasn’t been easy to debunk has it, Mish? At least NOT in the eyes of many as shown in the following article. That is my whole thesis. Doesn’t matter what you think, or what I think, or indeed many of the brainless parrots in this echo chamber think. Half of Republicans saying Biden won because of a rigged election is the problem. How is that going to be tackled? Hint, talking down to them, questioning the size of their brain, and taking a higher moral stance won’t cut it. Anyways, not my problem. I’m out of here until after the new presidential term has started. Good luck and happy Christmas.

Jeff Dog
Jeff Dog

It fits exactly the propaganda technique known as the firehose of falsehoods


Attorney General William Barr on Tuesday said the Department of Justice has not uncovered any evidence of widespread voter fraud that would change the outcome of the presidential election—despite unfounded claims from President Donald Trump that the results were rigged. In an interview with the Associated Press, Barr said federal prosecutors and the FBI have been investigating several complaints of mass voter fraud, but have not yet found any evidence to back up those claims. “To date, we have not seen fraud on a scale that could have affected a different outcome in the election,” Barr said. Trump has refused to concede his loss to President-elect Joe Biden, filing several failed lawsuits in multiple battleground states and sending baseless tweets that the election was riddled with fraud.

Last month, Barr issued a directive allowing federal prosecutors to pursue any “substantial allegations” of voting irregularities. “There’s been one assertion that would be systemic fraud and that would be the claim that machines were programmed essentially to skew the election results. And the DHS and DOJ have looked into that, and so far, we haven’t seen anything to substantiate that,” Barr said. The attorney general also noted that the DOJ cannot investigate without cause. “Most claims of fraud are very particularized to a particular set of circumstances or actors or conduct. They are not systemic allegations. And those have been run down; they are being run down,” Barr said. “Some have been broad and potentially cover a few thousand votes. They have been followed up on.”


idiots have always been with mankind. nothing new here. just amplified when they have such loud megaphones and one of their own who won the presidency after being a game show host.


Vociferous claims of a compromised election in 2016 return in 2020, except now the seesaw tilts the other way, politically. Maybe too many people recall the age of Diebold and election 'issues' of a generation ago and when one is on the losing side it seems the only way that can happen is by underhanded ways.

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