Friday, July 22, 2016

The Ugly American

"The most important difference between our plan and that of our opponents, is that our plan will put America First. Americanism, not globalism, will be our credo."
"They [big business/major donors] are throwing money at her [Democratic Hillary Clinton] because they have total control over everything she does. She is their puppet, and they pull the strings."
"I have a message for all of you: the crime and violence that today afflicts our nation will soon come to an end. Beginning on January 20th, 2017, safety will be restored."
"... My greatest compassion will be for our own struggling citizens. My plan is the exact opposite of the radical and dangerous immigration policy of Hilary Clinton. Americans want relief from uncontrolled immigration. Communities want relief."
"Yet Hillary Clinton is proposing mass amnesty, mass immigration and mass lawlessness. Her plan will overwhelm your schools and hospitals, further reduce your jobs and wages, and make it harder for recent immigrants to escape from poverty."
Republican candidate for November 2016 U.S Presidential election, Donald Trump 

Donald J. Trump greeting supporters in Cleveland on Wednesday. Credit Doug Mills/The New York Times
The inconceivable has occurred. A monomaniacal self-promoter, with the attention span of a gnat and the intelligence of a toad has bored himself with business interests, no longer absorbed in his success as a television entertainer, aspiring to unlimited power and prestige, now has succeeded in convincing a large and diverse segment of the American population which has been suckled at the teat of wealth and celebrity, that he is the ideal candidate for the presidency of the United States.
It is as though a mass psychosis has overtaken a significant proportion of Americans; those who have not personally been offended by the man's insufferable arrogance, meanness of spirit, doltish behaviour and leering assaults on women, Hispanics, blacks, gays and Muslims. Incredibly, at the Republican convention just concluded, there were groups of Republicans holding signage identifying them as Hispanics for Trump. The master of ceremonies welcoming convention delegates was a black man with a raucous voice and a beaming countenance as a Trump standard-bearer.

Trump accuses Clinton of lies, of corruption, of offending all standards of decency and official regulations. All of which no one can deny, all of which he is himself guilty of. The only matter that distinguishes the two candidates is that she presents as the establishment figure, the woman who shared the presidency then took up the most powerful executive position other than the presidency and was incapable of the most elementary security precautions in protecting state security and he is a political poseur.

Trump is champing at the bit to have the same opportunities when the same outcome or worse can be guaranteed.

His xenophobic free trade aversion and his intention to sequester America from its traditional role as a military, commercial, trade and cultural power with a wide and vast net of collegial nations would alter the balance of world power beyond belief. His clumsy, bullish offhandedness and penchant for abusing people of whom he is critical -- and they are legion -- represents his fitness as a diplomat on the world stage, but on the other hand, it is the world stage he plans to vacate the United States from.

Both Republican and Democratic candidates are resorting to appealing to the lowest common denominator in their respective bids to become the next president of the United States of America. Surely, Americans must feel they deserve considerably better than to be served by these two horribly flawed candidates each of whom has dreadful baggage of incompetence, overweening ambition outstripping suitability for the position, and a host of failures in their professional lives trailing them.

Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine
Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine Photograph: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

Hillary Clinton has the current executive body behind her. Was there even the remotest chance she would face criminal charges for flouting security of her country when she was Secretary of State? Mildly finger-flicked as careless, but no cause for any further action which would obviously destroy the ambition of an unfit politician to lead the country her entitlements to do as she wished placed in potential peril. The Clintons who cried poor while in the White House have parlayed their joint experience into vast wealth through story-telling publications, speaking engagements and charity.

Donald Trump, the bored billionaire, is merely attempting to do far more successfully what previous moneyed contenders have tried, to buy the White House that will become another piece of commercial property in the Trump empire. His poor taste and rude commercial attributes were reflected in his daughter's viewing of the convention as a splendid opportunity to flaunt her design label, then advertise its modest price for those eager to appear as fashionable as a celebrity figure.

It's all in the family, and American voters will get their chance to select which family they prefer to guide them into the near future and it's a tossup which of the two could bring a greater blemish of misery and incompetence to the office each of them, Trump and Clinton, hunger for. It is a power game, at the most elite level, one an amateur novelist might have conjured up out of a fevered imagination which would have received poor literary reviews as a credible storyline.

Mostly because we believe, as rational human beings, that no one could be that ignoble, crass and downright stupid.

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