Friday 11 November 2016.
The theorising has begun. How did it happen that this moronic individual became leader of the United States of America? The most powerful nation in the world. Some say the Democrats selected the wrong candidate. There may be some substance in that but Trump told those unhappy with conventional establishment politics, what they wanted to hear. Perhaps America wasn’t ready for a female president. How did Donald Trump attract such a large vote among those who would traditionally vote Democrat or not vote at all?
Was it simply a reaction to women’s growing rights, a cultural shift that no longer centres on straight white men. Were they votes based on fear, bigotry and ugliness?
Another reason, the great sleeper, in my view is unemployment and Trump may have identified it. All over the world, including Australia, politicians and Governments are seeking to minimise or hide a great big lie about massive unemployment (and under-employment).
Analysists are suggesting that real unemployment in countries like Australia and the US have an unemployment rate of nearer 20%. These people feel disenfranchised and Trump might have identified them and they voted for him.
Anyway, the list goes on and the complexity grows with it. How about this contribution from Waleed Aly:
“And it is surely a sign of how completely the political right has fallen apart that its world leader is spouting rudimentary left wing economic pamphlets. We’re watching an epic realignment here. Class is back in politics. We ignore it at our peril. And our almost determined blindness to it is exactly why we’re standing here in disbelief now”.
Books will be written about it and it will go down in political history as perhaps the most controversial election ever. One that defied traditional politics and conventional campaigning wisdom.
What we do know is this. We witnessed the enormous damage that populists can play in the lives of people who feel alienated and vulnerable. Along the way he insulted anyone he could, war veterans, demeaning women, calling people rapists, saying the system was rigged, saying things that in normal circumstances would guarantee your defeat.
During the campaign he gratuitously lied about many things, exaggerating what it was possible to do. He said he would repeal Obama care, have a trade war with China, including 45% tariffs, repeal the marriage equality act and take away a women’s right to have an abortion. He said he would build a wall and make Mexico pay for it. He said the Environmental Protection Agency would disappear. Rebuild the country’s aging infrastructure. Save Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security without cutting benefits.
He said he would defund the successful Planned Parenthood schemes. He would also temporarily ban most foreign Muslims from entering the United States. Bar Syrian refugees from entering the country and kick out any who are already living here.
The list goes on. Well here are some extracts from a list.
Mosques in the United States would come under heavily surveillance. He would create a database of Syrian refugees.
He would also prosecute Hillary Clinton.
Supreme Court justices who are ”really great legal scholars” would be selected.
He would strengthen the military so that it’s “so big and so strong and so great” that “nobody’s going to mess with us.” and “Bomb the s— out of ISIS.” Bring back waterboarding.
He would find an “out” clause in the Iran deal and then “totally” renegotiate the whole thing.
Bring back jobs from China and be the greatest jobs president that God ever created.
Aggressively challenge China’s power in the world by declaring the country a currency manipulator, adopting a “zero tolerance policy on intellectual property theft and forced technology transfer” and cracking down on China’s “lax labour and environmental standards.”
He would Tell Ford Motor Co.’s president that unless he cancels plans to build a massive plant in Mexico, the company will face a 35 percent tax on cars imported back into the United States.
Impose new taxes on many imports into the country. Numbers thrown around have included 32 percent, 34 percent and 35 percent.
In addition he said he would grow the nation’s economy by at least 6 percent. Reduce the $18 trillion national debt by “vigorously eliminating waste, fraud and abuse in the federal government, ending redundant government programs and growing the economy to increase tax revenues” and cut the budget by 20 percent by simply renegotiating.
He would also get rid of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.
Allow corporations a one-time window to transfer money being held overseas, charging a much-reduced 10 percent tax.
Get rid of most corporate tax loopholes or incentives, but continue to allow taxpayers to deduct mortgage interest and charitable donations from their taxes.
On his first day in office, Trump would get rid of gun-free zones at military bases and in schools.
Use “common sense” to fix the mental health system and prevent mass shootings. Find ways to arm more of the “good guys” like him who can take out the “sickos”. Get rid of bans on certain types of guns and magazines so that “good, honest people” can own the guns of their choice.
Sign an executive order calling for the death penalty for anyone found guilty of killing a police officer.
On the first day in office, he would terminate President Obama’s executive orders related to immigration. This includes getting rid of “sanctuary cities” that Trump says have become refuges for criminals.
He would also deport the almost 11 million immigrants illegally living in the United States.
Lastly he would “Bring back the American Dream”.
This is not the complete list. You can read it here.
You can see from this list that during the campaign he unabashedly pandered to every disaffected, racist, bigot, unemployed or generally dissatisfied person he could. You cannot, despite the fact that Clinton won the popular vote that it worked. Now even at first blush the reader, I hope, would agree that many of these promises are virtually impossible to deliver. For example how could he possibly double America’s growth rate. Now in the theorising of this extraordinary outcome some might agree with me that the promises are bogus, we would both have to agree that he did identify the issues that effected people. The dishonesty is in the fact that he gave a gilt edged promise to fix everything.
”Only I can fix it”
Those who have perused this list and the link provided would also agree that each needs closer examination. Space does not allow me to do that in this piece however, I would like to address one.
Donald Trump will be the first world leader to dismiss the science of Climate Change and refuse to ratify the Parris Climate Accord. In doing so he joins other leader’s Syrian president Bashar al-Assad, Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe and Kim Jong-un, the leader of North Korea in denying the science.
By saying that global warming was ”bullshit” and a ”hoax” that was ”created by and for the Chinese in order to make US manufacturing non-competitive” the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, is saying that he knows better than 98% of the worlds ”climate scientists’ ’It is tantamount to telling your surgeon he doesn’t know what he is talking about. Men who so blindly dismiss science cannot do it out of superior examination, but rather do so in the consideration of profit.
In fact, he wants to expand the use of fossil fuel. That would be a disaster for our planet.
My thought for the day.
”In terms of the environment. I wonder what price the people of tomorrow will pay for the stupidity of today”.