Saturday, May 28, 2016

The Trump Hillary Faceoff: What Did We Do To Deserve This?

C'mon. This really isn't a surprise, is it? Oh, it is? Really? So, how do you think we got here, stuck with the incomprehensible choice of two of the most unpopular people in the country? It sucks, right? Do we deserve this? Maybe.

How on earth did we get a Trump? Here's how. Forget his orange face and teeny, pudgy fingers, his ill-fitting suits (What's up with that? He can certainly afford better), his cotton candy hair. That's window dressing. Have you ever heard of 'perfect timing'? Somehow Trump emerged and tapped in to the somnolent, apathetic, undercard of the American populace. They've been simmering - seething in fact - with discontent as their world was crumbling. They're pissed, just like we are(!), at government bloat and dysfunction, corruption and laziness, the inability of Congress to get anything done aside from keeping their cushy jobs. And maybe because there was a black man in the White House who was really the one responsible for every conceivable shitty thing that was going on in their lives. Trump came along and woke them with his gutter mentality and spoke their language. Suddenly, they had a voice and became political activists, going to rallies, trolling on the internet, listening with a deaf ear to Trump's hate speech. Alarmingly, we watch them, dissidents of the establishment, morph from passive to aggressive with their ugly newfound voice.

And people have fallen asleep at the wheel. Well-meaning people think that cleverly complaining about politics and reposting opinion articles (I do that) on Facebook is being an activist. No it's not.Yeah, everyone's busy. So busy, in fact, they forgot to vote. Tell the truth, you know you don't vote in down-ticket or mid-term elections. It makes you want to cry. By being too busy to vote for your school board candidates, your council people, your Supervisor, your State Senator, your judges, you relinquish your voice and your power to effect who is elected to represent you. Every one of those people make up the foundation of our governing system. We build from the bottom up and whoever wends their way through that system to emerge at the top becomes our top tier candidates. They started somewhere and someone had to vote for them to get to the next level. Except for Donald J. Trump who busted into our lives through reality tv and the tabloids. An aberration because he's not a politician who went through the electoral process. He is just a total aberration.

But, it's Presidential season and because, for years, we didn't exercise our vote up and down the ticket, this is what we got. Often the weakest candidates win in mid-term elections simply because of low voter turnout and those are the people who become incumbents who then are hard to get rid of and who often rise to the top (The Peter Principle) to become weak Presidential candidates. So, we do get what we deserve. That is unless, miracle of miracles, one honest, authentic, progressive (no flip flopper here!) politician manages to rise like a phoenix and upset this entire election miasma to save us all. No, the rest of this is not a paean to Bernie. You can safely read on.

The Trumpians are really pissed at the government because they feel they haven't been heard. You know who they should be mad as hell at? They should be mad as hell at their ineffective Tea Party! They have been led them down a fantastical path where the promise to live in a deranged Utopia of hate and guns and hegemony was dangled before their myopic eyes and what have they got to show for it? Somehow all the anti-abortion legislation and the NRA making sure no one got their hands on their precious guns - well, aside from little Johnnie who shot his father - all that hasn't done shit for their bottom line. Incomes are down 6.5% since the start of the recession. The fear that drove them to embrace the Tea Party and their fundamentalist, neo-libertarian promises hasn't worked out too well. Right-wingers have not seen much accomplished even in their Fascistic universe. Yes, we (the good guys!) are beyond frustrated by those obstructionist right-wing politicians because they have been at the forefront of an astonishing do-nothing Congress. But they haven't done anything for their supporters either. Tea Partiers probably don't realize why they're pissed but the people they've elected have done zippo for them and they are sick of it - sick of government and sick of their pathetic representatives...although they would never say that. And now the asylum inmates think they have finally found their Messiah. Donald J. Trump. Well, at least now, they're involved in the political process.

The Democratic Party should use their millions to support a PR campaign to educate people about what voting means leading them through the process from the bottom to the top, how it affects electoral outcomes and how precious each vote is. And let's throw in a national day off to vote. Please vote every election...