A REASSESSMENT OF DONALD TRUMP’S BID FOR THE PRESIDENCY OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: NEW YORK TIMES COVERAGE OF TRUMP RALLIES REVEALS TO ME THE PRESENCE OF THE WORST ELEMENTS OF AMERICAN SOCIETY LURKING WITHIN THE TRUMP CAMP.
I just got back from a two week vacation in my home province of Quebec, both in my native city of Montreal and my adopted home town of Quebec City, where I grew up and spent the better part of thirty five of my fifty two years on this earth. It was a time spent reflecting on the past year in Ontario and English-speaking Canada in general, and a chance to get all caught up with what’s going on back in the French-speaking part of Canada and to get a feel for what people over there are thinking and feeling as well as talking about.
I don’t normally watch the TV news all that much anymore because of the constant stream of negativity and conflict, especially the morbid fascination with mass shootings, sexual violence and perversion, political corruption, especially as it relates to sexual deviance and pecuniary corruption, and so on. I just have to read the Bible and I can get plenty of all of that and more, I don’t need the current version of the same story, because essentially the storyline has not changed one bit.
What did disturb me, though, was when I got to having a serious conversation about the US Presidential race with my friend in Montreal, where I was staying. I consider her to be a very erudite and well-informed person, who taught journalism for most of her career at a local community college in Montreal for over thirty five years and knows a thing or two about reliable sources of information. Although I do not consider any media outlet to be unbiased, nor do I consider the New York Times to be the last word on any subject necessarily, it is still nonetheless a credible mainstream broadsheet newspaper which speaks with a considerable amount of authority regarding domestic American affairs as well as international issues.
My friend and I got to talking about the Trump vs. Hilary race, both one on one, as well as in mixed company with a couple of very well-educated French-Canadian neighbours with whom we shared a light meal, and the consensus was unanimous: Donald Trump’s chances of being President of the USA stand at about 25% at most, and Hilary’s stand at about 75%. This, apparently is based on the most accurate scientific polling done in the USA, based on five of the most key ‘swing states’ and a number of other key determining factors of a demographic, gender and socio-economic nature, which all seem to indicate that Trump’s campaign is in deep doo doo.
The clincher for me was when we came back from these neighbours’ place and continued to talk it over between myself and my friend and she then showed me some key pieces she had read in the New York Times on her tablet. I’m not normally a big fan of getting my news off of such gadgets as tablets and e-readers, but I viewed these two pieces of information with interest. One was from a former acting CIA Director, who served both Democratic and Republican Presidents in crisis situations, including Hilary as Secretary of State in the Situation Room when they took down Bin Laden. This fellow is normally sworn to silence and to keep a non-partisan attitude in any election regarding any potential incoming President, or the record of the outgoing one. However, this man felt so driven by his moral duty and conscience to speak out based on his knowledge of what he considers to be both candidate’s force of character (or in Trump’s case, lack thereof), that he openly came out and said that he will be supporting Hilary and that Trump, based on his behaviour, especially his rash decision-making and inability to reflect upon his actions and to reconsider a decision based on the light of new evidence, and the Russian’s ease in manipulating him through flattery, was a sure sign that he would be a clear liability, even a threat to American national security and that of her people, if he was elected.
Wow, I was blown away when I read this. And here I thought that this multi-millionaire business tycoon had at least the potential to run the US government, seeing that he could run a real estate empire. I also came to the realisation that he ran that same real estate empire into bankruptcy twice, if I am not mistaken, which does not bode well for such a debt-ridden organization as the United States government and all the people and businesses who count on her continued solvency for their livelihood.
The final nail in the coffin was when my friend then played for me a web-video, compiled by New York Times journalists, of about a year’s worth of audio-visual footage taken from Trump rallies. It exemplified not only the nature of Donald Trump’s character as portrayed through his often outrageous extemporaneous, off the cuff outpourings of verbiage, but more clearly it demonstrated what sort of segment of American society was being drawn into the ‘Trump Vortex’ of demagogic extremism. The journalists were very keen not only to record Trump’s speeches, but to video and audio tape what Trump’s supporters were shouting out at these gatherings.
What the journalists witnessed were an endless stream of homophobic and Islamophobic slurs being shouted out in the open, and anti-immigrant slurs and T-Shirts, As well, people whose views which were contrary to what Trump and his hardline followers espoused often found themselves being physically assaulted by goon-like tough guys, chillingly reminiscent of Hitler’s ‘brown shirts’, whom he used as ‘security guards’ to purge opponents from Nazi rallies. Luckily, official security guards were usually on hand to quell the violence and one man was depicted with a T-shirt which squarely said ‘Fuck Islam’, being escorted out of the assembly hall, while he continued to shout this slogan at the top of his lungs. Others depicted cartoon-like T-shirts showing Hilary being assaulted by Trump with the caption ‘Trump that Bitch!!!’ I saw one tall, slim, goofy-looking guy with googly plastic glasses in a business suit, who could have been a chartered accountant or an economist, being singled out with homophobic slurs and getting roughed up by goons in the hall. One guy was outside yelling: Build the wall!!! Build the wall!!!
I could not believe my eyes. Donald Trump seems to have attracted and given voice and enabled some of the worst, and ugliest un-American elements within American society, the likes of which chillingly remind me of Nazi Germany before Hitler muscled his way to power in 1933. Those Trump rallies looked like something reminiscent of a postmodern proto ‘Beer Hall Putsch’-type of atmosphere, the likes of which set the stage for Hitler’s incarceration, and eventual writing of Mein Kampf and his eventual re-emergence from obscurity to lead the world to the brink of annihilation.
In my mind, therefore, despite two terms of Democratic incumbency, there seems to be only one choice for President this November in America: Hilary Clinton. If you want to vote Republican, you’ll have to vote for your local Congressman or State Governor, (or maybe the dog catcher? Do they run on party lines? Enquiring minds want to know y’know!)
Well, I’m sure the Great Republic will survive this latest bout of political histrionics to perhaps die another day, as we say. After November comes and goes, there will be the transition team, the Inauguration etc, and the wheels of American Democracy, such as they are, will continue to grind forward on the life support or borrowed time of Chinese markets buying US Treasury bills to continue to finance American deficit spending on a consumer lifestyle which has long since over spent and outlived its usefulness as a vehicle for managing a society, what with its profligate tendency towards massive over-consumption of agro-industrial comestibles in fat, sugar and salt (there are, after all, three food groups, you know, Tim the Tool Man Taylor said so on Home Improvement, I saw it on TV!!!), automobiles, and consumer electronics, which all leads to obesity.
Well, God Bless America, land of the sick, poor, fat and stupid. And that includes us in Canada too, by the way, we’re pretty much just as bad as the USA now in regards to our status as Walmart and McGarbage People. The only place in Canada where I saw fewer fat people was in Quebec City and Montreal, where the presence of American pop culture and junk food junkies was less prevalent, especially in the Plateau Mont Royal area of Montreal and the Upper Town part of Quebec City.
Despite walking everywhere and taking transit, I still gained five lbs. while on vacation. I’ve really got to ‘Trump that bulge!!!’ Well, maybe Trump’s passage on the American political scene will not have been for nought. I won’t have learned anything about tact, poise, grace nor reason, much less a decent haircut, but I will have become motivated to shed a few pounds in case the Donald creeps up on me while I’m have a burger and poutine and yells at me : YOU’RE FIRED!!!! Keep on smiling folks!!!!