Donnie Does Dallas!
Yep, well, I have to admit it! I was wrong!
No, not about the Trump victory. Although I did think that Hillary Clinton would win, I’d never be absolutely certain of anything in an election where a large number of people don’t vote.
I was wrong about Russell Brand. For those of you with long memories, you may recall a few years ago when the comedian was guest editor of “The New Statesman” he was asked why should anyone listen to someone who’d never voted in their life. Russell, never one to take a backward step, insisted that he didn’t need to vote because, as he explained: “I don’t get my authority from this preexisting paradigm which is quite narrow and only serves a few people. I look elsewhere for alternatives that might be of service to humanity.”
This spawned a movement that was bigger than “Kony 12” on social media with many going “Yay, Russell, you’re right. They’re all as bad as each other. We should all stop voting and that’ll force them to get their act together.”
Now at the time, I remember trying to point out that one could actually walk and chew gum at the same time. I suggested that maybe it was possible to vote once every few years without necessarily having to place all one’s faith in the political system; that in between one could still attempt to change the world and have whatever revolutions one wanted. Some of Russell’s fans were outraged and tried to prove me wrong by telling me that Russell was a genius and very funny and he’d had a hard life and consequently this meant that he was completely right and so I should just shut up! I was also sent several photos and videos of his supporters actually chewing gum while walking, which made me feel that they’d missed the point.
However, several assured me that it was only when people realised that voting would never improve things that people would rise up and join Russell in his revolution and they too would take such radical steps as editting “The New Statesman” and demanding that people stop looking to politicians for the answers.
I rather naively thought that there were differences between the parties. While in Britain, it’s true that Tony Blair followed Bush into Iraq, but whatever the faults of the previous government, I’m sure those who had their support cut under David “The pig consented” Cameron wouldn’t be telling us that there’s no difference between the parties. (Yes, yes, I know that the disabled should just get better and stand on their own two feet even if they don’t have legs, and that I’m just another one of those bleeding hearts, so you needn’t bother commenting!) Anyway, he’s gone and Britain has a new PM to manage the Brexit – another time when some people can pat themselves on the back and say that they neither voted for nor against it because voting never makes a difference to anything.
But it’s the past week that I feel has proven Russell knows best. With nearly fifty percent of eligible voters not casting a ballot in the USA, we can stop disparaging Americans for the election of Trump. When you add the non-voters to those who voted for Hillary and the other candidates, it becomes clear that only about a quarter of the population voted for Trump. So one should feel a whole lot better. They’re not all crazy over there. Some had the sense to realise that it was better not to vote at all. Imagine if they’d voted for Clinton instead, they’d feel respsonsible for all the bad things she did.
Donald, on the other hand, may turn out to be a pleasant surprise by not causing the destruction of the world. As Malcolm Turnbull told us the other night, we shouldn’t think that Trump meant everything he said on the election campaign trail. Sadly, Leigh Sales didn’t ask him if his reason for believing that is that he, personally, didn’t mean the things he said on the campaign trail, but Ms Sales seems to have trouble asking Malcolm anything more difficult than: “Did you pick out that tie to bring out your the colour in your beautiful eyers?”
Ok, Trump is going to build a wall. But before you start to worry about the illegal immigrants just remember that they usually use tunnels to get across the border, so it probably won’t stop them. However, as he’s going to insist that Mexican government pay for it, it will provide jobs for the Mexicans when he rips up the free trade agreement.
Of course, his views on climate change have caused some concern. Previous presidents have announced that climate change is a terrible concern, then done nothing about it. Many are concerned that having a president who’s sceptical about climate change may lead to him not only not doing anything about it, but actually failing to make any promises to grow concerned about it at some time in the future.
Then there’s a lot of concern about his protectionist policies. Imagine if he does start a trade war with China. Imagine if China goes into recession and the whole world stops producing all those things that we desperately need like the latest model iPhone with the added feature of being a different shape than last year’s – we’ll all be stuck using technology that’s no different to the person who didn’t update at the first available opportunity and it’ll be harder to tell which are the cool people.
And, of course, let’s not forget that people are afraid that his election will act as encouragement to various racist and extreme groups, but, as Shane Warne said recently, there really is too much political correctness lately and it’s turning all the celebrities into boring people. According to Warne, famous people should be able to say what they like and other people shouldn’t criticise them. Yep, if you’re not famous you should just shut up because it’s really hard to listen to criticism when you’re a celebrity, but minority groups and any supporters should just cop it and keep their mouths shut.
But whatever, it’s worth remembering that Trump will just be a figurehead. He’ll be surrounded by people to advise him and to assure him that he really is the president and that there’s nothing wrong with appointing Incitatus to be the next Supreme Court judge.
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“…may turn out to be a pleasant surprise by not causing the destruction of the world.”
I do not think anyone would think that the Donald would be allowed to bring about the end of the world.
There are far greater problems arising from this wolf in sheep’s clothing being President of the USA. He is part of the problem for working Americans. He is part of the problems arising from globalisation, no matter his ideas about trade and tariffs. He has a terrible record as a business man, albeit a wealthy one. If he is only a token President, he is a waste of space and does not represent the central views of the Republicans. He is a loose cannon with contradictory or impractical pronouncements.
We have similar problem here in Oz with our own PM. It is about the power of the born to rule, business as usual.
It funny (ha ha ha in a funny sort of way) how the laborliberals cant seem to get it right. Of how ‘their’ team can do no wrong and the other side is evil. They forget so easily the rottenness of the establishment that the Democrats now represent. They forget the bigpharma pocket filling largess of Obamacare. They forget the nation destroying war machine – the very one that plans to put a trillion into improved nuclear weapons, the half built wall on the border built by a Clinton, the evisceration of the working class, the jailing of the blacks, the lack of wage increases for all but the meritocracy. The lies the bullshit even the tidalwaves of refugees cause by their policies. They forget all that. Instead for some half arsed notion they think they live in a democracy in Australia and that the USofA is similar – again forgetting that the USofA is an Imperial nation – not subject to the laws of normal countries. Its an Empire not a bloody country folks. The President is the Emperor and he is dependent upon all the little emperors to do his work. At best he can guide it in a direction but only sometimes and for only so long.
What the Labourliberals have forgotten is that Labor started out as a working class party and if the Democrats ever represented the working people they certainly don’t today. And if labor isn’t careful it will go the same way.
Trump might prove to be a bad President but at least the American people didn’t vote for a proven loser. And Hillary was a dud. Now take a breath I’m sure there will be plenty of new stuff to get angry about and hopefully first he will clean out the closets and give the world a chance to reset.
Russell Brand – not Brandt. He actually makes a lot more sense than people are prepared to give him credit for, and given what voting has provided, I’m not sure that voting actually matters an awful lot, particularly if you live in a safe seat.
The very good looking clever and funny Russell should enter politics, the female population would certainly vote him in…
Thanks for the tip Helvityni. The Greens need more candidates with sex appeal, I will suggest it at the next strategy meeting but won’t be offering my candidacy as I need to give the others a chance.
If the sheep keep voting (or abstaining to vote) for the wolves because the wolves run the democratic show, then the sheep need to be wise and brave and ……….
Are there nicer wolves somewhere?
” I will suggest it at the next strategy meeting”
Is part of the Greens strategy to try to change Labor instead of itself and continue on with it’s desperate bid for Alliances.
Good to see you have strategy meetings .
It will give you something to strategise over rather than Labor internal workings
How it is, the great unwashed, cannot see Trump’s declaration of being “smart” by avoiding tax is robbing them of services and forcing the government, any government, to extract more taxes from them to make up for the shortfall in taxation of the wealthy 1% that Trump and the Walton’s represent is beyond me!
@Steve Laing agree! I was once condemnatory of Brand, but he does see the world for what it is. I don’t believe he wants to be aligned in any direction hence his no vote stance. Sadly no vote means a doble vote for those who do. Whether you agree with them or not.
you mean the sort of tax laws that stand in most countries.
I have given up on ABC; Leigh Sales flirts with Morrison. I assume Ms Julie will do the same with Trump. And so it goes….
Bernie Sanders polling had him beating Trump by a long measure, it was a safe victory, so why didnt the democrats choose him? They misused the power of super delegates, he was barely reported on. I wont get into the Russia today coverage of it because they went into the twilight zone on it but reality was Bernie was popular enough and the Democrats should have understood the situation well enough to make the choice to support him.
The mood in the US was definitely against an establishment candidate through the whole process the media reported it so many times that it was obvious Hillary was a risk. The Democrats relied on people using common sense and thought it would carry the day.
Where is common sense when wages have comparatively fallen in the US over the last 20-30 years Whole areas of once booming cities look like war zones the police come out with tanks and assault rifles and America looks like an occupied country.
Big corporations have destroyed middle class America and much of the environment.
It isnt apathy that did this it is simply there are huge problems in America that were never going to be addressed by Hillary or any other system candidate.
Bernie sold America the dream of more jobs, free health and education, honest banking and finance and making sure the tax cheats pay up.
There was an article published in America on why many people saw it as Bernie or bust because individuals and families were slowly slipping into poverty and could make a go of it no matter that they had multiple jobs.
If the people want to be angry and want to protest they should protest the democrats for pushing a candidate on them they didnt want.
A smart party would heal that rift, but they wont.
The world got Trump as a result.
Yes, I also have no doubt Bernie would have won. He would have gained considerable votes from the rust belt and rural areas as he does in his home state of Vermont as well as from many young people who didn’t vote but would have felt enthusiastic enough to give him his vote. Free education and writing off student debt would have been a big motivator.
Bernie was the main driver behind the political message that the top few percent are running off with the wealth and are not investing this wealth due to suppressed consumption demand. These extra votes would have added to those who voted for Hillary. Some wealthier voters that voted for Hillary may not have voted for Bernie but overall he would have been well ahead especially in the crucial swing states.
It is clear to me that the money men decided the candidates that were to be presented to the American electorate and that they did not want Bernie Sanders. Democracy has been hijacked. I suspect they didn’t particularly want Trump either but he exploited the media and the huge levels of discontent better than they expected.
It’s not fair, we were not allowed to have Bernie, then Leonard Cohen died, and now we have Trump…
.Having Mal and Mutton here bullying refugees, taking away their hopes and dreams is worse than just unfair, it’s unforgivable cruelty. We are no better than America.