And so it begins.
Both parties have now produced “inevitable” presidential candidates who are corrupt, opportunistic, sexist, self-serving, anti-gun, pro-big government, as personable as rabid skunks, and (worse from the mainstream point of view) electorally weak.
The Punditocracy, both professional and amateur, feels it has no choice other than to persuade its readership to hold their collective noses and v*te for … somebody. But since there’s not a single good thing to say about the candidate of their reluctant choice, the argument usually goes: “Yes, we know you’ve said you’d rather v*te for nobody than for ______. But think again! On issue A, B, or C Candidate So-and-So is so much worse than Candidate Such-and-Such that you simply must v*te against ________. Or the sky will fall.”
In the face of national loathing for both mainstream candidates, it’s amazing that political insiders have not yet shoved forward an independent Ross Perot or John Anderson type. But here the situation stands. For now.
I am not a pundit. I don’t care if you v*te for Unindicted Co-Conspirator D or Mercurial Megalomaniac R. I don’t care if you v*te at all. As an old political junkie myself, I wake up about two mornings out of three thinking Trump would be less ghastly than Clinton II and wake up on the third morning thinking Hillary has advantages over The Donald, though by the time I’ve dosed myself with caffeine I can’t recall what those advantages might be. Oh yeah, that with those mysterious health problems she’s hiding, she’s more likely than Trump to drop dead suddenly and be replaced with someone marginally less horrible. Or with her email and corrupt fundraising history she’s more likely to be disgraced, indicted, or otherwise forced out of office early. That’s her advantage.
Not a good enough reason to v*te for her, though. Unless someone puts a gun to my head, I won’t be v*ting for anybody.
But I don’t care if you v*te or not. That’s your business. I do care if Americans ask the right questions about these party animals, about the thick mess the country is in, and about how we personally should respond to it.
‘Cause it seems vast swaths of Pundithood want you to ask the wrong questions. And when you ask the wrong questions, you never arrive at the right answers.
One of those “You must v*te against ______!” pieces showed up in the TZP mailbox the other day. (A widely circulated but wildly misattributed piece of commentary.) It made a valid and important point against Hillary: the Supreme Court.
Justice Scalia’s seat is vacant. Ginsberg is 82 years old, Kennedy is 79, Breyer is 77, and Thomas is 67. …
These are 5 vacancies that will likely come up over the next 4-8 years. …
Hillary Clinton has made it clear she will use the Supreme Court to go after the 2nd Amendment. She has literally said that the Supreme Court was wrong in its Heller decision, stating that the Court should overturn and remove the individual right to keep and bear arms. Period.
Never mind that no court, no president, can ever “remove the individual right to keep and bear arms.” They can mightily interfere with the exercise of said right. So yes, the prospect of Hillary controling multiple appointments to the court is ominous.
But then the pundit goes absurdly over the top:
If Hillary Clinton wins, and gets to make these appointments, you likely will never see another Conservative victory at the Supreme Court level, for the rest of your life – – – Including your children and your grandchildren.
The rest of your life? The rest of your grandchildren’s lives? Oh, really? Let’s say you have a child this year and that child grows up and, at age 25, has a child. Then that child, your grandchild, lives 75 years. (Note: “the rest of your life, ridiculous enough, appears in the original. Someone added all those grandchildren as the piece circulated. So it’s the pundit’s editor going even farther over the top.)
We’re supposed to believe that, if Hillary is elected, the Supreme Court will remain rabidly Hillarian for the next 100 years???
“The sky is falling! The sky is falling!”
But worse than the Alice in Wonderland math and the Chicken Little claims are the things unsaid, the facts unstated, the untruths cleverly implied — the questions unasked. Such as:
What makes anyone think Donald Trump is a “conservative,” or that he would appoint “conservative” justices? Trump has supported single-payer health insurance (to the left of Hillary). Trump has been anti-gun, just like Hillary. Trump has used big government to his own ends and wants to use them now in populist (traditionally “left-wing”) causes. Trump has contributed to past Hillary Clinton campaigns. Conservative? What?
What makes anyone think that justices appointed by Trump, even if he happened to choose a few “conservative” ones, would be pro-gun or pro-liberty? This generation may have forgotten that the court headed by “conservative” Chief Justice Earl Warren produced some of the most unconstitutional, left-wing decisions in U.S. history (with Warren’s full and enthusiastic collaboration). But surely we can’t already have forgotten that current “conservative” Chief Justice John Roberts single-handedly saved Obamacare. “Liberal” justices tend to remain liberal, but “conservative” ones often do what other gov-o-crats do: v*te for big government once they’re part of it.
Ask the wrong questions — or fail to ask the right ones — and you’ll inevitably get the wrong answers.
While (correctly) damning Hillary, the viral article says not one, single, positive thing about Trump. It offers not one smidgeon of evidence that Trump would do anything better. Because there is no evidence to offer. It implies in a slippery and sideways manner that he’s a conservative (whatever that means), but actual evidence of his principles or his intentions is completely absent.
But Hillary is anti-gun! Hillary will appoint nasty Supreme Court justices!
So please don’t notice that Trump is just Hillary with even worse hair, a louder mouth, and a different variety of sexism.
The sky will fall if you v*te for Hillary! Your grandchildren will still be stuck with her 100 years from now!
Never mind the consequences of Trump. Don’t mention them. Imply that he’s a “conservative” antidote to creepy authoritarian anti-gun eternal statism and maybe in November it’ll miraculously turn out to be true.
It could happen. And pigs could fly. And Dorothy could click her heels and come safely home to Kansas. And Jesus really could appear on a tortilla. And orchids could bloom outdoors at the North Pole. And presidential candidates could tell the absolute truth, hold noble principles of freedom, and always do exactly what we hope they’ll do, just because we hope it so very, very ardently.
It could happen.
But wouldn’t we be better off if we closely examine reality and act in accordance with that?