May 8, 2016

Trump: Goldwater or Reagan?

Anyone who spends more than five minutes watching one of those hoary panels on Fox News, CNN, or other media circuses, comes away with the impression that Trump has a HUGE mountain to climb, has the highest negatives of any candidate ever, is grossly upside down in many demographics (particularly women) and basically will lose in a landslide to Hillary Clinton.

I am not sure, at this point, what the reality will be in the penultimate month of the year. But I do know this:

(1) These are the very same pundits, commentators, and talking heads who gave Trump zero chance at the nomination when he was up against 17 other organized and funded campaigns -- arguably many with resources that were on par with Clinton's campaign. And yet he bested them all, [still] rolling up the largest total votes cast for a Republican candidate in a primary ever.

(2) There is a decided difference in the trajectory in the campaigns of Clinton v. Trump. One is limping along fighting a rear-guard action and buying all the party insiders it can find while the other is whistle-stopping America and winning a great number of followers by speaking to the common citizens of this country and directly addressing their concerns.

(3) As inferred above, a 74-year-old politician with absolutely no perceptible achievements during his time in the U. S. Senate, has fought her to a standstill. He has done this by promising "Free Shit" to a bunch of unrealistic, idealistic, naive yutes who openly admit that they dislike Clinton because of her links to the establishment. He will undoubtedly not win the nomination because of Clinton's enormous funding and heavy majority of the insider "super delegates", but a victory in this manner by Clinton will not endear a great many of these folks to her. Yet the math by the pundits beggars the imagination, insinuating that all of them will flop over to Clinton if Sanders does not get the nod. (This is as nuts as the pundits' adding up the votes for the other candidates in a primary and assuming that none would go to Trump if their candidate dropped out.)

(4) Clinton is a notoriously dismal campaigner, she is not likable and tends to shed votes as she goes along -- as she did v. Obama in 2008. There's also the nagging question of her accomplishments. What in hell has she actually done as a senator or S. O. S.?

(5) she is under a cloud -- a veritable thunderhead -- of suspicion because of (a) her e-mail frolics, (b) her absolute treasonous and incompetent handling of the Benghazi affair, (c) any implications of impropriety surrounding the Clinton fund, (d) the big biz and "insider" donors, etc.

(6) In the past, Republicans have been backing candidates who are basically eunuchs. The neutered ex-pow Senator from Arizona who should be walking around some rest home in Arizona in a ratty bathrobe and slippers with his winky hanging out and Mitt Romney who should just plain shut the fuck up. Both had their chances to put one of the most incompetent, inexperienced POTUS candidates in his place but suffered from "trigger fright". McCain mumbled something about Obama being basically a good man during his attempt in 2008 and we all know how Mittens whiffed when the cookie-crunching Crowley openly took Obama's side in the second debate. By contrast, not a week after Trump became the presumptive nominee, he came out with guns blazing and swatted down Clinton's first two tenuous ads. For good measure, he similarly batted away that Elizabeth Warren's feeble attempts to describe him as a hate monger and a bigot. I do not foresee Trump altering this approach. As the old Texas football coach, Darrel Royal, used to say about his not changing his offensive strategy before a big game, "You gotta dance with who brung ya."

(7) These pundits are as willfully clueless to what the American people are angry about (and why) as are the feckless Republican legislators we have sent to congress over the past 8 years. They both are inside that impenetrable beltway bubble with their six-figure incomes, emoluments, aggrandizement, and their kids tucked away in Sidwell Friends. They are totally oblivious to what we mirror-fogging, mouth-breathing proles are upset about. The last time the ruling class was this far out of touch with the peasants, it didn't end very well at all.

So, basically, I believe that the asshat pundits and commentators on those shows need to buy a vowel (or two). But Will Trump get elected? Is he a shoo-in?

I dunno.

But I do know that I have been through two elections like this in my lifetime that frame the yin and yang of what will happen in November.

That is, will Donald Trump be a Goldwater or will he be a Reagan?

And by this, I do NOT refer to the politics of those three gentlemen. (And, goodness knows, the label 'conservative' has been diluted and misappropriated over the last three campaigns) I refer, instead, to whether Trump will be a principled individual speaking to a principled but minority contingent of the electorate as Goldwater did and get buried in a landslide of Dem lies and hate. Or, will Trump be able to tap into a wellspring of anger and frustration abroad in this land and unseat an incompetent government in response to the will of the people as Reagan did.

Truth be told, I do not know. But I suspect we will find out right soon.

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