A Stinky Choice

A Stinky Choice


Leonard Zwelling

         Tuesday, November 8 is E–Day and for the first time that I can remember, I will not be in America on Election Day. The BW, Coach K, has a big meeting in Lisbon and I am tagging along carrying her briefcase. I suspect that I will be up late Portugal time on Tuesday and into Wednesday morning following the results on CNN.

         This is an election of great consequence for a number of reasons.

         First, as far as I can recollect (and that’s back to 1956) this is the worst choice for President the American people have ever had. One candidate, Mr. Trump, is the loosest of loose cannons, firing off his mouth like a cannonade at war. Mrs. Clinton has highly questionable ethics and trusts clearly untrustworthy people, like her husband, making her judgment inherently suspect.

         Second, it is likely that no matter who wins, the country will remain as it has been since 1994, ungovernable as the sons and daughters of Newt Gingrich tie up any chance of compromise and neither Mr. Trump, because he doesn’t know how the government works, nor Mrs. Clinton, who will be blocked at every turn, will be able to initiate any progress at all. Congress should go home and eat rubber chicken for all the good it is likely to do in the next four years.

         Third, the basic meanness of the country is likely to remain intact. Racial schisms will prevail as the Trump candidacy has shown. Immigrants will continue to be vilified even though all of us save for American Indians were immigrants once. We are still in many foreign wars fought by 1% of the population while the rest of us serve not at all. Our infrastructure is a basket case (you have got to see LaGuardia to believe it) and our educational system ranks in the double digits among industrialized nations. Our health care system is discriminatory and there is no energy to change that in a meaningful way.

         Neither of the people likely to become the next President has a ghost of a chance of fixing any of this. One has no clue and the other has no good will.

         All that being said, Mrs. Clinton is still the better choice, even though she is not a good one. Mr. Trump simply does not have the skill set to be President and conduct the country’s business in any sort of reasonable fashion. He cannot even conduct his own business in Atlantic City in a reasonable fashion. He won’t release his tax returns and he is clearly a bigot and a misogynist. He cannot lead this great country and despite what he says, it is great. It just needs some leadership and some work right now.

         My guess is that we are four years away from a real choice. In 2020 there will be a Republican candidate that wishes to change the world, advocating many of the Trump policies, but dressing them up in more palatable conservative costume. The Dems will likely go young seeking an Obama-like figure who can actually get something done.

         That’s about all my crystal ball has right now. Frankly, I am sorry I won’t be here on Tuesday. Coverage will be a hoot. Either she will win as expected or this will be the greatest upset since Harry Truman and the greatest choke since Heimlich.

         I am jealous you can all watch it on the channel of your choice. Enjoy the coverage; fear the result.

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