Saturday, January 30, 2016

The "Why Not?" Election

Taking a break in the office yesterday, we batted around the insanity that is the American presidential election. We're a diverse group with arch-conservatives, leftists, Trumpkins and a Catholic moral scold or two thrown in for good measure. Our unanimous take on the primaries and the major candidates was, "What in the world is going on?"

Hillary has months, maybe weeks to live, unless political levers are thrown. The leaks you see in the press are just the battles in the White House being taken to the public. The press secretary says Hillary isn't a target for the investigation while the FBI is leaking that JWICS (top secret) information was found in her emails.

Bernie and Trump are simply nuts. The remaining Republican candidates aren't getting a chance to be heard and it's not obvious that it would matter if they were.

That last is the key. Everyone has heard their promises before and none of them have been kept. For conservatives, border security has been promised for 20+ years and it's as bad as it's ever been. For progressives, they keep looking outside, but Santa has yet to bring them any free unicorns*.

So why not vote for Trump or Bernie? Yes, they're insane, but what difference does it make? Why not take a flyer this time? We keep trying to be issues-driven and serious and all we get are lies and broken promises.

Jonah Goldberg has a typically well-written column this weekend about how Trump is a boor and being a boor isn't the same as standing up against opponents of free speech. Or something like that. He's right, but it doesn't matter. Who cares if Trump screams the n-word on live TV? We've voted for stable and well-mannered candidates and the deficit is $18T, wages are stagnant, there's no growth and all that.

I think my man Ted Cruz is the only one who could break through this, but he's got to change his message. He's made buckets of enemies by calling out the Republican leadership for being craven liars. He needs to turn that around and keep hammering on the positive version of that same message.

"I know you've been lied to by candidates in the past. I'm not one of them. I mean what I say."
* - I'm paraphrasing here. Work with me.

No comments: