Tuesday, August 23, 2016 12:24 PM
Your brother and I are very stubborn-minded, and we have very different ideas that may keep us from agreeing on any political issue. But that doesn’t stop us from recognizing each other’s respectability—in an emergency or a disaster, we would work shoulder to shoulder, politics be damned—in a social setting, we would both behave and be polite—and do our damnedest to avoid discussing politics. In that way, politics is like religion—people can differ and still get along, as long as we don’t go out of our way to look for an argument.
For there are plenty of arguments to be had. People argue, sometimes for no other reason than to pass the time—if it’s a civil argument, I actually enjoy it—but nobody argues when something important comes up. If I am hungry or thirsty, I’m not going to argue with anyone, I’m just going to ask them the way to the nearest diner. If someone gets hurt, no one argues—they call 911, and argue later.
Take Hillary Clinton’s emails, for instance—why should we be surprised or upset if a lady older than we are (and we’re no spring chickens) didn’t fully understand about her email account? Only kids understand email fully—I was forty before I heard the word ‘email’. If Hillary’s IT techs were under investigation for being lax about security, that might make some sense—but to act like Hillary Clinton installed her own hardware, set-up her own network, and had full knowledge of everything there is to know about email—to shout, “lock her up” because she sent 30,000 emails and one of them was clearly marked ‘classified’—that’s hyperbole. That’s something you argue about when you have nothing else to do but kill time and gossip.
Yet because of this, we have 64% of Americans judging her to be untrustworthy—some reward for busting her ass in public service for fifty years. Plus, who tells the truth every single time? People lie like rugs—for politicians, it’s part of the job description—and for this grease-spot of a GOP candidate to crow about her ‘untruthfulness’—well, pot calls much smaller kettle on that score, in case no one noticed. P. T. Barnum’s got nothing on this clown.
Donald Trump’s inner circle consists of a white supremacist, a sex offender, and a pollster—they recently jettisoned their Putin mole. He’s a billionaire with a history of defaults and frauds who won’t release his tax returns. He owes money to China and gets financing from Russia. He’s an ignoramus who doesn’t even keep up with world events—and he’s never done any public service before—yeah, he should definitely be leader of the free world—what the hell do we have to lose? Well, except for civility, honesty, world opinion, economic security, national security, and our self-respect.
He’s a spoiled brat of a bully hiding inside the body of a seventy-year-old man. He doesn’t know or care about the office of the presidency, he just wants to ‘win’. What an ass. And he has the balls to criticize the most capable, accomplished politician of our time—not to mention criticizing everybody and everything else—and she can’t criticize his career in politics—because he doesn’t effing have one. He has a history of a business career—and not a glowing history, by any means. If we want to improve our economy by cheating everyone we deal with, including each other—then Trump is the ‘business-savvy’ leader we want—but why would anyone want that? It’s obviously left him so bored and brain-dead that he decided to run for president, like it’s some contest. Give us a break.
But I’ll tell you what inspires this venom in me—Trump is the whole Republican party, writ large. All their ingrown, paranoid policies point to one end—and Trump has unzipped their fly and is waving it around like the village idiot. They don’t like being exposed this way—especially by a narcissist who doesn’t appreciate how much damage he’s doing to their decades of careful rationalizing over the same stupidities. He destroyed the fifteen other candidates by ignoring the niceties, the pretensions that must go along with public support for wrongheadedness—he took their complicated stupid, and did them one better, with just plain stupid.
So my frustration is doubled by the fact that, once we’ve dealt with Trump, we still have to go back and deal with the GOP—hopefully without forgetting that their base is comprised of people who like the cut of Trump’s jib—and that the GOP curated them to be that way. The most malleable and knowledge-adverse Americans have a champion in the GOP—and Trump is the king of the knowledge-adverse. But your brother and I can vote differently and still remain friends—hell, I know one guy who thinks the earth is flat—that’s his business. Why should I judge him?