50. Trump time

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I’m increasingly reluctant to be drawn on the divisive and inflammatory circus that is contemporary politics. But tomorrow’s US mid-term elections warrant an honest appraisal.

Has anyone in any of our lifetimes divided people like Donald Trump? I wouldn’t choose to spend time in his company. Clearly racist and sexist. No doubt in my mind that he has substantial US and Russian mob connections. Someone who back-tracks on previous statements like the rest of us eat and breathe. Nasty. Incredible that this bull in the china shop has lasted two years.

But a Nazi Kremlin agent? Or a populist hero? Really?

I have learned to mute the mass media vomit. Don’t care about Big Don’s trigger-happiness on the tweets, the meandering and bizarre press conferences, and his possession of a penis shaped like a mushroom. Beyond all that, I see something that will enrage some observers.

The same bullshit as Barack Obama, although admittedly with none of the former’s President’s style, grace and masterful command of public relations.

But strip away Trump’s grossness and Obama’s artifice, and you are left with the same support of debt and war as the default US policy positions. More and more borrowed money and resources being poured into the US war machine which sends soldiers, planes and war ships into other countries under the banner of peace and democracy.

Trump wants to raise already colossal US military spending 13% in two years. Obama, Bush and Clinton acted similarly when they also wore the captain’s hat. The very notion that there are great differences between Democrats and Republicans about the best way to run an empire is not backed by fact, to these eyes.

Obama’s presidency was – IMVHO – disgraceful. Where to start? Maybe the three times as many whistle-blowers arrested as under all previous administrations, or the reneging on his promise to close Guantanamo Bay. Not keeping his word on raising the minimum wage and delivering single payer health care. The policy of using drones to kill American citizens, and letting all the torturers on the US payroll off the hook.

‘Yes we can’ said Barack. The legacy of the ‘nice guy’ includes his failure to halt the foreclosure crisis, and the millions of Americans that lost their homes, or to hold any major banker accountable for the widespread damage it inflicted. Instead, some $16 trillion in taxpayer-funded bank bailouts, backstops and loan guarantees. Bankers were too big to jail and too important to investigate. Why?

Worst, for me, was how the first black president blockaded and bombed developing countries like every white president before him, and added the scalp of Libya, a once-prosperous African country where black Africans are currently being auctioned as slaves.

Just saying. Because our most influential news sources do not.

Leading into the US mid-terms, both sides seem deranged. Prominent Democrats suggesting violence against Republican opponents while the GOP paints the Democrats as angry, unhinged mobs. Both sides bringing pre-formed opinions to everything the other side does. The disappearance of rationality is such that whatever happens this week will likely be deemed ‘fake’ by the opposing side.

Worse, there looks to be no turning back. No return to rationality, and an ever-declining trust in government. Why would anyone vote for any of these fuckers? How many of them flag up well-considered positions on the disasters of bellicose foreign policy and the iniquities of a debt-based financial system in their manifestos or on their websites? In the UK, the Green Party does exactly this, taking the kindest, most radical position. There has to be a start somewhere.

My logical political stance – which both sides hate hearing – is to unashamedly opt out of the interminable left and right shit fight. It is no longer fit for purpose, always leading to debt and war whichever way you lean. In the UK, the years when a Labour vote held out the promise of compassionate government have long gone. The bloke below had a hand in that.

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Red or blue, little difference now, while a plutocratic layer maintains control over politicians’ behaviour, and ordinary people continue to struggle to make ends meet.

Nobody can make me play that game anymore. Better to exercise discretion with my attention, be kind to those around me, and try and arrange this life towards the maximum level of pleasure and freedom.

 

 

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