Wednesday, 27 July 2016

Contemplating the unthinkable

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In recent times at least fifty-two percent of the populous were rejoicing at the prospect that the world would soon be run by women. Angela Merkel was well-ensconced in the German powerhouse, Theresa May bowed reverently towards the Queen, took over the reins in Britain and then went on to deliver a scathing but witty admonition to the hapless Jeremy Corbyn in their strangely-configured House of Commons.

Since then however Helen Clark’s light has faded in her bid to be the UN Secretary-General, Mrs Clinton looks to only have a 50/50 chance of taking up residence again with Bill in the White House and Marie Le Pen’s prospects in France are dismal at best.

At time of writing the most unlikely of presidential candidates, Donald J Trump, had just been overwhelmingly well-received at the boisterous Republican Party annual convention, due in good part by the performance of his family, who fortunately look more like their mothers than their father.

Ivanka was especially stunning in both speech content and in the $138 sheath dress she designed herself which was understated, but elegant. To be fair Ivanka would look good in sackcloth.

Ivanka’s handsome husband Jared Kushner is a wealthy businessman in his own right and is one of Mr Trump’s closest advisers.

The good book says ‘by their fruits ye shall know them’ which may be why America’s evangelicals seemed to have endorsed Trump despite Mrs Clinton describing him as ‘a serial philanderer.’

Most of the speakers at the Republican convention concentrated on dissing Mrs Clinton rather than highlighting the salient points of their candidate’s policies and this week it will be the Clinton supporter’s opportunity to take the stage at the Democratic convention to dish the dirt on Mr Trump. There will be plenty of opportunities to berate the controversial billionaire. Much of Trump’s rhetoric is at best exaggeration and in the many instances simply not true.

Despite this, polls show that Americans have less trust in Hillary than they do in “The Donald.” Pundits must be asking just how a country with a population of more than 300 million ended up with these two. Surely a better option would have been Matt Damon versus Clint Eastwood.

And yet Time magazine reluctantly concedes that Trump may be better suited to the politics of the moment. At home and abroad, from the collapse of the traditional Republican Party presidential field to the Brexit vote in the U.K., elites of all kinds - governing, corporate, intellectual - are facing a withering populist backlash. Trump has positioned himself against the history of leaders of traditional experience and expertise. Trump’s admirers think of their man as a 21st Century version of Ronald Reagan - a charismatic leader who had an occasionally ambiguous relationship with facts and details, reported Time.

When asked why he thought he could handle the most politically challenging job in the world Trump surprisingly quoted Lydia Ko. “On the golfing channel they said to her, ‘When you bring your club up, how do you bring it down?’ What’s your thought?’ She said, ‘I don’t know, I don’t really have a thought, it’s just something special.’ I’m a bit like Ko, I’m a natural political athlete.”

Well we’ll see; or we won’t.

“When I was a boy I was told that anyone could become President. I’m beginning to believe it.” - Clarence Darrow.


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