Were I eligible to vote in Tuesday’s US presidential election, I would’ve voted for Hillary Clinton. I figured that her policies and personality would be better for the USA and for the world.
But the American people felt differently and they elected Donald Trump to be their next President.
Neither of them is an angel, neither without a past. And Trump’s conduct throughout the election season was nothing short of ghastly. His crudeness, disrespect, misogyny, bigotry, racism and ignorance of the nuances of global politics were blatantly and embarrassingly obvious.
Yet, he won.
He struck a nerve among people who were fed up with the so-called ‘Establishment’, fooling them into believing that he, a man who was able to get away with a nearly $1 billion tax bill, was not part of that same establishment.
He fooled poor White people into thinking that he was their champion. Now this is a man who outsourced much of his work to foreign shores, robbing poor Americans of jobs, a man who hired underpaid foreign workers and a man who stiffed small contractors who came across his path over the years.
Yet he won.
He blocked Black people from occupying his rental premises, and condemned and vilified five young Black men for a crime they never committed, yet he got Black people to fly his flag.
He referred in the most heinous and unkind ways to Mexicans and Muslims, yet he got some of them to vote for him.
He attacked women and showed the world the chauvinist pig that he was and is, yet he got loads and loads of women to vote for him.
There were that many people who were fed up with the ‘Establishment’, which Trump fooled them into thinking he was not a part of.
He also was able to capitalize on the deeply negative perception of Hillary Clinton, some of which is her own fault but much of which was manufactured over the years to pre-empt any bid by her to the Presidency.
And lest there be any doubt, some of that effort to block her was fuelled by anti-woman sentiment.
Trump said he would “bomb the f...” out of everybody, that he would give South Korea and Japan nuclear capabilities, that he would leave North Korea to China, that he wouldn’t worry too much about Russia occupying the Crimea and that he would turn his back on NATO.
Basically, he said that he would give Russia a free hand. (Why do you think he has so much support there?)
Yet he won.
He said that he would deport millions of Mexicans and others, and that he would create high tariffs against goods coming in from Mexico and China.
The economic disaster and human trauma that such a move would cause in America and in those countries to which the deportees would be sent was no deterrent whatsoever to his loyal voters.
He said that he would close down Obamacare and put twenty million people out of a health care program. A lot of poor, red neck white people who are the biggest food stamp users and who benefit from Obamacare put on their Trump shorts and rallied with their champion.
And he won.
He was embraced by the Klu Klux Clan and by other white supremacist groups, and he got more white votes than you can imagine, and quite a few black ones too.
He said that he will lower taxes for all, and that he expects that the very rich will turn their savings into investment to create jobs for poor white and Black and Brown and yellow people, and that the savings to companies will cause them to keep their operations inside the USA.
If you think that that will stop people like him from bobbing and weaving with the tax system so that they don’t have to pay any Federal tax at all, so that they can declare bankruptcy when it suits them in order to stiff the tax payers, workers and contractors and suppliers, then watch and wait.
He said that climate change was a hoax, created by the Chinese government and that he would proceed with all projects that outgoing President Barrack Obama had held back on because of concern for climate consequences.
Clearly, he tapped into some nerves and was able to gather in a coalition of people with a variety of grievances, a coalition large enough to get him into the White House.
Of course, he has to face the courts now with Trump University, possibly with the Trump Foundation, and with those eleven women who have claimed sexual assault on his part.
And his tax returns will be exposed.
He also has to find a way to deliver on some of these ambitious and extravagant promises that he has made to his people.
You’re aware of the old saying: “Be careful what you ask for, because you might get it.”
All I have to say is : Donald Trump now has his chance.
But don’t blink because things will happen, and they will happen fast. Keep your heads low.
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