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NO SILVER LINING

THE STORM-TRUMPERS CHEER THEIR MONSTROUS WIN
The old adage that history repeats, the second time as farce, almost rhymes with this nasty nightmarish moment, the election of President Trump by a whitelash landslide, except the American Caligula now in our midst - the most dangerous and dishonest person to be democratically elected to such a powerful leadership role since WW2 - is no farcical figure.
 
Comedians might wryly note that Donald J Trump is very presidential - he has the moral compass of Nixon, the sexual ethics of Bill Clinton, the intelligence of George W Bush, the cultural sophistication of Reagan, the political experience of Eisenhower, and the family-decency of Kennedy - but this approach lacks depth or clarity.  There has actually never been a president like Trump before. There may never be a presidency, again, after him.
 
There are two ways to treat this most horrible of events - and one is with cautious optimism; however, since this blog correctly predicted that Trump would win, we also wish to err on the side of cautious pessimism.  There is very little in the Trump resume to suggest any other way. It is possible, of course, that, like last night's muted acceptance speech, he can now moderate his Barnum-like excesses, and prove to be a capable, even strong, manager and CEO of America Ltd.
 
Trump, however, ran a campaign marked by too many evils to be let off that lightly.  We need not repeat his offenses here - but it is alleged he is a child rapist; a serial sexual offender; a sociopath; a bully; a cruel and vengeful man; a selfish egomaniac; a cheat and liar; and arguably, a hate-monger and exhorter to violence. He has flirted with the far-right, and white supremacist symbols.
 
His win was obvious to anyone who understands the Nixon silent majority plan to recruit a block of white, male, working class, bigoted, and angry voters; Pat Buchanan and his pitchfork revolution wanted to do this decades before; Newt Gingrich tapped this same vein. Reagan, also. As we have seen, there is a slim majority of adult Americans who apparently want a racist, woman-hating bully in power. So, after America's mostly noble experiments, we now see the American soul yearns like the Russian peasant for a potent father-figure, a Tsar.
 
Trump ran openly as a father figure - as a potent male - and did not hide his belligerent, highly-sexed, driven Darwinian aspects. He is the Uber-American. And the people who voted for him in droves knew this yesterday, and they cheered. Tragically, a relatively good woman, Mrs Clinton, has been defeated. She was no saint, but she was smart, capable, and has spent her entire life trying to improve life for many, especially children, and women. She is too complex and ambitious to be considered a likeable person - which was her downfall - but buried depths of racism and woman-hate drove the attacks upon her.
 
Anyone who does not see this as the worst moment in the history of the West since the death of Kennedy, or Dr King, about 50 years ago - or even since 1933 - is being naïve.
 
The new Republican army has all three power levers in the US government now, and can destroy environmental laws, stack the Supreme Court with bigots, tear down all the fine achievements of the Obama years; cause wars, religious and civil strife; stoke racism; and permit other tyrannies to prosper, unchecked. The level of spiritual and intellectual poverty on display in this election is actually vomit-inducing.
 
It is true that such anger and ignorance can only be bred in swamps of neglect; and that the establishment has much to answer for, as with Brexit. But now, the UK and America are under the sway of populist anti-rational movements, and worse is yet to come.
 
I fear for all those decent Americans - a majority of women, Hispanic, African-American, and Millennial, voters - who hoped to follow the decency of the Obama terms with a reasonably sane President.  Washington, DC is now Berlin, just before the night of the long knives.  What purges to come, what intolerance, what walls, what wars, what blood running in the streets? Shame on all who did this.
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THE BARBAROUS CENTURY, Leah Umansky
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SIT IN THE DARK WITH ME, Jesse Lee Kercheval

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