As we collectively slouch toward the two political party conventions in July, a couple things become abundantly clear.
First, we are all fucked because both of these candidates, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, are horribly flawed human beings, wildly untrustworthy, and really unpopular, with large percentages of voters who find either choice distasteful.
Second, we are doubly fucked because the next president will be one of these two characters, either Trump or Clinton, despite their serious flaws, personal histories, and gross unlikability.
Clinton acolytes have spent most of the Spring and early Summer beseeching Bernie Sanders to get out of the Democratic primary race so that Hillary can go “one-on-one” with Trump and steal his lunch money. This ain’t about to happen, because Sanders has effectively been out of the race and out of the headlines for several weeks and polls indicate that there is very little daylight separating the remaining two candidates.
And consider that Trump cannot possibly damage his “brand” any more than he already has, short of appearing at a Klan rally in full regalia,
The social media was filled with tributes from the blubbering masses about the historic significance of Clinton’s nomination. Grown men, according to their own Facebook admissions, were reduced to tears when the first female presidential nominee emerged from the primaries, but how much of this tearful jubilation was geared toward placating the wife or girlfriend remains to be seen.
One so-called “narrative” that became prominent on social media is that Hillary Clinton was the “most qualified candidate” to ever run for president, apparently because she served in the senate for two terms and was named Secretary of State in the first Obama administration. Even Obama jumped on that bandwagon after Clinton sewed up the nomination. “Look, I know how hard this job can be. That’s why I know Hillary will be so good at it,” he said. “In fact, I don’t think that there’s ever been someone so qualified to hold this office.”
Well, it turns out that Martin Van Buren was a senator, a secretary of state, a governor, an ambassador and a vice president, before assuming office. Nice resume. Nice qualifications. But Marty was also a one term president who earned in the press the nickname Martin Van Ruin.
Bob Dole was a World War II veteran who served in the house and senate for decades. Dole ran against incumbent Bill Clinton in 1996 and Clinton won in a 379–159 Electoral College landslide.
These are just two random references.
The point is that Clinton’s qualifications serve as a good talking point, but only within her inner circle, and among her surrogates, party hacks like Howard Dean and Ed Rendell.
Of course, Donald Trump has zero “qualification” to hold the office of president but that hasn’t kept him within the margin of error in several recent presidential polls. And the fact that he’s a first-class dick has apparently helped, not hurt, him in these same polls, at least until now.
As secretary of state, Clinton presided over the successful elimination of Osama bin Laden, but blundered huge in her support for “democracy” in Libya, Egypt, and Syria. And, as senator, her support for the Iraq invasion was a mistake of historical dimensions. That’s why Trump is an overwhelming favorite among voters to take on ISIS and deal with international terror. And with new suicide missions occurring at a rate of about 3 a week, Trump only gets stronger.
Clinton supporter’s denunciation of the Bernie Sanders campaign was dishonest and repugnant. It was as if Sanders was trying to mischievously derail the neo-Camelot narrative of Clinton’s anointment for no real good reason other than that he could. That he embraced several core positions different and more progressive than Clinton’s and that he had millions of supporters was lost on the Democratic establishment who viewed Sanders as merely a skunk at the Hillary nomination picnic. The media’s duplicity in this marginalization of Sanders and his supporters was political journalism at its worst. The “liberal” news network, MSNBC early on joined the assault on Sanders, with the insufferable Rachel Maddow leading the charge, traipsing out Hillary surrogates like Rendell and Dean to denounce Sanders on an almost daily basis.
So we are stuck with who we are stuck with.