Thursday, July 07, 2016

November 2016... tick tock...tick tock

If you are an American living abroad, as I do, you are naturally very conscious of the world's opinion of the USA. The question now sometimes asked directly and often implied is: How can a country of over 300 million people, the richest and most powerful in the history of the world, one that, once upon a time, produced Jefferson, Lincoln, the two Roosevelts... even Truman, Eisenhower and LBJ, end up having nothing better to choose from now than Trump and Hillary?

Donald Trump appears like a nightmare product of a poorly digested meal... I find myself much more worried by the masses of people who would support him enthusiastically than by the Donald himself. When he has gone back to his golf courses these people will remain and perhaps, someone more subtle and even more evil than Trump will find many more effective ways to exploit them.

That leaves Hillary

I don't like Hillary Clinton, I never have... or Bill for that matter, although he may have been the most naturally gifted politician ever to sit in the White House, he may have also been the cheesiest too. That odor of ripe Camembert follows the Clintons wherever they go. 

Obama too has been quite a disappointment for me, I agree with Cornell West, that he is a "Rockefeller Republican", having said that, he and his family have had a very beneficial effect on America's image around the world. "Elegant" is the best word to describe Barack and Michelle Obama. As to his "legacy", he will probably be remembered as much for what he hasn't done, like not sending ground troops back to the Middle East, as for achievements like Obamacare, which is pitiful when compared to any European country's public health system.

For me the choice between Trump and Hillary is clear

Hillary Clinton may reek of Camembert, but Trump reeks of sulfur.  

The biggest danger now is that many of the supporters of Bernie Sanders, among whom I am numbered, dislike (loathe) Hillary even more than Trump supporters do and if, as is nearly certain, she is the Democratic candidate, many Sanderistas may either stay home on election day, or go out and vote for a third party candidate or... even vote for Trump.  In sufficient numbers this fugitive vote might end up putting a renegade villain escaped from a Marvel Comic into the White House.

The third-party option is the one that worries me most. Remember: this sort of bickering leading to Ralph Nader's votes in Florida was what brought us George W. Bush... and next to Trump, Dubya, is Joan of Arc. 

The American system has been so constructed as to be very resistant to change and it is a two party system. At this moment the Republican Party seems about to commit suicide and it would be a shame if the Bernie supporters did anything to impede their Trump-led, self-destruction. After the Republicans destroy themselves in November and the Democrats take back both houses of Congress... then would be the time to split the Democratic party to left and right, not now. DS

1 comment:

stunted said...

Blaming Nader's candidacy for the W. presidency is impossible to prove, but a point of view trotted out as a cautionary tale to condemn third party candidacies. I voted in Palm Beach County,Florida in that election and Theresa Lepore's butterfly ballot for Palm Beach County was confusing, to be kind about it. A case could easily be made that the ballot design was responsible for people intending to vote for Gore punching the ballot for Pat Buchanan by mistake or, realizing their mistake in the voting booth, then punched for Gore as well, thus disqualifying their ballot.

Assuming Hillary wins, I agree that those supporting Trump are the real worry. In that case, Trump is John the Baptist to the real deal to come in the next cycle. A Clinton administration will feed the low-thinking paranoia. A black president followed by a woman president will just be too much for those wanting their country back. If Trump wins, Brexit will seem like summer holiday camp in comparison.