This morning the media was lamenting the sorry state of our politics and the stench of last night’s debate. Of course they set much of this fiasco in motion, promoting Trump and to a lesser degree Clinton; feeding on the slime that has been spread around not just for the last year but for decades and coming full circle with the spectacle of Clinton accusers from nearly two decades ago meeting with Trump prior to the debate. Many people believe, and I concur, that the age of news as entertainment, ratings driven and happy to scrape the bottom of the barrel, began with Monica Lewinsky et al. That is when tabloid, yellow journalism replaced integrity and truth in the so-called legitimate press.
In last night’s crime against the American people one can clearly identify the usual suspects. The smug, self satisfied pundits who immediately gave the win to Trump because he didn’t fall off the stage, drool on his tie or miss an opportunity to feed his base red meat with first 33,000 then 39,000 erased emails, Bill’s dick and Benghazi – of course. After some sane fact checking and the reflection of Maddow’s superior mind, the accolades died down a bit when it became clear that most of what Trump said was hyperbole and outright bullshit. His stalking of Clinton, hovering over her shoulder and scowling at her back, not to mention threatening to have her jailed in a Trump administration, finally threw cold water on the idea that he did anything other than fire up the meatheads who slavishly follow him. Even the Caterpillar, Chris Matthews, and the Mad Hatter, Chuck Todd, realized that the idea of Trump jailing his political opponents was particularly chilling. That isn’t done in this country or any democratic country – it is tin-pot dictator, Fascist strong man knuckle dragging.
The evening wouldn’t have been complete without the appearance of the Only-If-You-Agree-With-Me-And-It-Serves-My-Political-Agenda-Christians. Kelleyanne Conway, a graduate of the Lee Atwater/Karl Rove School of political dirty tricks, spoke of her candidate’s masterful performance. It is worth noting that Ms. Conway hasn’t been a frequently seen political operative, post Clinton scandals when she opined often in the most strident of ways. Campaign chairperson in a presidential race is an incredible opportunity for her, never mind that she was hardly in a crowded field of applicants. It remains to be seen whether or not the stain of Trumpism will cost her more in the future then she has gained short-term.
Speaking of stains, one must wonder if an indelible blemish will remain on the snowy white head of the holy man and theocrat Mike Pence. In my estimation it is doubtful that he could have retained his governorship in Indiana, and might have slunk away to relative obscurity had he not been chosen for the second slot on the Republican ticket. To spite the bleating of the “experts” in the media, there are several reasons why he wouldn’t be a viable candidate for president. For instance, he opposed the Matthew Shepard and James Bryd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act while in the House; under the guise of religious freedom he passed one of the most egregious pieces of anti-LGBT legislation in the country to the detriment of his state’s economy; on March 24, 2016, he signed HEA 1337 which in his words would “ensure the dignified final treatment of the unborn” and mandated the burial or cremation of miscarried or aborted fetuses by health care facilities or the parents.
Having said all of this, it is my considered opinion that Pence may be as dangerous as Trump. He is a religious zealot, a fanatical extremist who is bound and determined to see his beliefs codified into a state religion via legislative or executive fiat. By way of demonstration I would suggest the reviewing of the part of the VP debate where Senator Kaine explained his views on religious freedom and contrast those ideas to any of the above-referenced legislative moves by Pence. To spite all the piety, this lover of the Lord accepted as contrition Trump’s insistence that Anderson Copper didn’t understand the nature of the “Access Hollywood” tapes. Clearly, Pence is terrified of becoming as irrelevant as some of Trumps other supporters, Christie, Giuliani and Gingrich come to mind, if he steps away from the campaign.
Terror seems to be running rampant in the Republican Party these days. Take Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, currently growing calluses on his scrotum from sitting the fence. Just this morning he came out with the statement that he won’t campaign for Trump, he won’t pull his endorsement, but he won’t work for him. He is telling down ballot Republicans to do what they must to insure that they win their race – ah the rotten stink of self interest. Apparently, he is terrified of losing the House majority. He should lose his job, but that is unlikely.
Today Pence and other Trump surrogates are out doing what they do best, Gaslighting. From news program to news program, network to network and back again, they are all busy telling us that we didn’t see what we saw, hear what we heard or know what we know. This is one of the preferred methods of abusive personalities to exert authority over those they mean to control. Anyone who doubts Trump’s proclivity for abuse might want to listen or re-listen to the “Access Hollywood” tapes.
My dad used to say that it is a great life if you don’t weaken and can keep your sense of humor. Unfortunately there isn’t much to laugh about these days. Trump and Clinton are the two most unpopular people to run for president in our history, and that isn’t funny. Most people will hold their nose and vote for one because they dislike them less than the other, and that is anything but funny. I will vote for Clinton, the politician, rather than Trump, the psychopath. Having to choose between an appearance of impropriety/corruption and the inevitability of catastrophe is the least funny thing I can imagine.