All right, kids. Before we go a step further down the rabbit hole, I just have to ask: Are we really doing this?
With 330 million Americans wandering about our vast fruited plain, at least 1 million or 2 million of whom might not be a complete presidential catastrophe, are we really going to choose between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton for the position of Leader of the Free(ish) World?
Don’t get me wrong; I’m not necessarily averse to the idea. After all, eight years of President Barack Obama has me pretty well inured to the idea that the Oval Office could double for the main stage at the “Ha Ha Hut.” The Prince of Grant Park, propelled by unshakable belief in the teaching of such worthies as Bill Ayers, Jeremiah Wright and Karl Marx, has bumbled from scandal to scandal like an amateur Benny Hill. In fact, the only aspects of his tenure that have been less ridiculous than his ham-fisted attempts at dictatorin’ have been his marble-mouthed excuses therefore.
So maybe it’s appropriate that the two people vying for the title are likely to be:
- A loud-mouthed billionaire who has been bankrupt nearly as often as he’s been a Democrat; and campaigns – and lives – as if his entire existence is a reality TV show starring himself.
- A possibly-brain-damaged sociopath who has turned being married to an alleged rapist into an enormous amount of power and influence which she has neither earned nor shown any aptitude for handling in a positive manner.
At least Donald Trump’s ascendancy is entertaining. Say what you want about the man’s variable politics, apparent ignorance of serious governmental matters and dalliances with both the Clintons and the anti-life abortion movement, he is the living embodiment of Joseph de Maistre’s prescient axiom. An America that allows the constitutional excesses of the Obama administration, the fiscal excesses of the Bush administration and the everything excesses of the Clinton administration deserves the personal excesses of a guy who once hawked bottled water with his own picture on the label.
Under any other circumstances, Trump might be viewed as a brilliant buffoon; a fame-seeking savant who has erected a gaudy glass tower of a life (with his own name in lights, of course) through force of shameless will. As a presidential candidate, he’s a retort to the open warfare Obama and the political elite have waged on the rest us. They built a wall around Obama, deflecting every criticism of his disgraces with coded racial invective and outright dishonesty. In their zeal, they also built a candidate who is seemingly immune to their tactics.
Trump has lived at the center of a tabloid tornado for nearly 40 years. Stand or fall, succeed or fail, Trump has done it all by the credo that all publicity is good publicity. He hosted the Clintons at one of his weddings. He played a part in a long-running WWE storyline. He was even a Democrat. He’s about to be the Republican nominee for president of the United States. And he doesn’t care how you feel about that.
So what if a President Trump makes the rest of the world treat us like we’re their weird cousin? The rest of the world is already looking at us funny. Our Nobel Prize-winning president has spent seven years accusing law-abiding Americans being racist religious wacko terrorists, while sending their hard-earned money to actual racist religious wacko terrorists. That created a world in which we’re literally paying people to hate us. At least Trump won’t pretend to care what the rest of the world thinks when he tells them to get bent.
However, that could create a world in which America ends up more isolated than Kim Jong Un at NBA tryouts. And this is where I get hung up on Trump. While I like the idea of a president who is unapologetically brash, I’m not wild about the idea of a president who is unapologetically boorish. It’s a line Trump tends to see only in the rear view mirror. We need a thoroughbred. Trump often appears to be only the south end of the horse.
Of course, the only alternative the two major parties are offering is a woman who veers between being foggier than a retired bare-knuckles prizefighter and being meaner than the guy wearing the hockey mask in a teenage slasher flick.
On the plus side, she might not be criminally responsible for national security leaks which led directly to multiple murders. Unfortunately, that would require her being either one more bump on the head from drooling in her pudding, or as far behind the curve as a Victrola salesman in an Apple store.
She earned obscenely heavy stacks of cash from the fattest cats at Goldman Sachs and the bankster class, but somehow embarked on her latest presidential journey “dead broke.” That would require her being either greedier than George Soros, or as fiscally irresponsible as Kanye West.
After two and a half centuries of America, we’re down to a self-obsessed publicity hound who used to be a Democrat, or a self-important power hound who used to be a Republican. Neither one would be the first choice on any sane person’s presidential ballot. We’re probably not going to get the government we want. But don’t we deserve better?