From the Middle

tmp_21484-index21382328285Since I threw a hissy-fit about political posts on Facebook this week, I suppose it would be imprudent to post something political here on Older Eyes – Bud’s Blog.  What follows isn’t meant to take sides but as commentary on what I’ve seen since the election of Donald Trump as the president of the United States.  I think I belong to a disappearing breed, the Moderate. That means I am liberal on some issues (mostly social), conservative on others (mostly economic and national defense), and somewhere in the middle on many.  Hence, Moderate.  I voted for John McCain and Mitt Romney because I felt that Barack Obama was too liberal and lacked experience.  This year, I voted for Hillary Clinton for two reasons … her experience and my concerns about the character of Donald Trump, which … if you care … you can read about in my post, Enough.

But that doesn’t mean that, as a Moderate, I can’t see why people voted for him.  All I have to do is look at the red-state blue-state map … or the near even split in the popular vote … to know that half of the electorate felt ignored by the Democratic party and President Obama.  They weren’t all bigots or deplorables … although there are those on both sides of the aisle (they only differ what they are bigoted about).  All people who favored limits on immigration or disagreed with some of Mr. Obama’s views were cast as bigots by Democrats and by the left-leaning mainstream media.   People who disagreed with aggressive changes in LBGT rights were similarly cast, even when their concerns stemmed from religious beliefs.  In my opinion, there is indeed a political elite that wants to dictate how we should conduct our lives, and the only thing that differentiates this elite on the left and right are the specifics of how they think we should act and believe. Trump caught lightning in a bottle by campaigning as someone outside the elite of both parties who would listen to those that felt disenfranchised.

As the election rolled toward it’s surprising conclusion, Democrats screamed bloody murder when The Donald said he might not honor the results.   Once Hillary lost, Democrats began to do the same thing.  The Electoral College was just fine to Democrats until it cost them the election.  The media reported the vehemence and vitriol of Trump rallies with great alarm, but once Trump was elected, sometimes violent anti-Trump protests were not treated with the same disdain.  Every Trump cabinet appointment was reported with alarm because they were Trump supporters (gasp), conservative (gasp!) and, like the president, inclined to shake things up. Isn’t that what a newly elected president is supposed to do once elected? Meanwhile, the closing words of President Obama and his departure were treated with reverence, as if he were somehow the savior of the nation. For weeks I heard the latest about which celebrities had refused perform at Trump’s inauguration, capped by Meryl Steep’s dismissive Golden Globes speech directed at the election and Trump supporters.  Does anyone actually believe a president needs celebrities to govern?  That they have any insight at all as to what most of us experience?  Just more elites.

Now, at this point, you may think I’ve donned a red Make America Great Again cap but you’d be wrong.  I’m not wearing anybody’s cap or anybody’s white pantsuit either.  I am proud that our country elected a man of color to its highest office and I believe Mr. Obama and Michelle brought genuine dignity to the office, particularly during what must have been an awkward transition.  But the red-state blue-state map shows he did not bring us together as he promised .. and that half the country wanted a change. I do worry about the Trump presidency. His personality and divisive style still scare me, as does his lack of experience.  Just as I wouldn’t send Hillary Clinton to build a high rise hotel, I wouldn’t have sent The Donald to the White House.  But after Obama’s election, I was concerned with his lack of experience and worried that he wouldn’t listen to conservative viewpoints. He ended up doing OK. We’ll survive Trump, too, and maybe he’ll surprise me and do some good. What worries me is that the conditions that enabled his rise, a bipolar political elite, each ignoring half the nation, will survive him, too.   I don’t want to go to my grave in a nation divided, each half thinking the other half is the enemy.

Today, as I was driving to the park, I briefly turned on CNN.  A speaker from the Woman’s March was saying, This is the second time that WE won the election and THEY walked into the White House.  What ever happened to the Us in U.S.?

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4 Comments on “From the Middle”

  1. Do you really suppose that a president, or any of his co-billionaire appointments care about what is good for the American public? Or, do you really suppose that America will benefit by a major shift of income away from the middle class and working poor to those already so wealthy their great grandchildren couldn’t spend it fast enough.?

    • oldereyes Says:

      I really dont see how you would assume i suppose either based on what Iwrote. I don’t have much faith in this president but the notion that billionaires can’t care about their fellow man ignores this country’s history of wealthy philanthropists. And until I see what the actual tax reforms entails, I’m not in a position to comment on benefits. I do believe that government wealth redistribution plans of any kind seldom work to the benefit of the country. I suppose that makes me a capitalist. I can live with that.

      • You have, I think, fallen into a trap laid out by
        people who want to mislead others into a blind alley. You use a “popular” phrase “redistribution of wealth” as a definition of government taxes. What you are implying, either intentionally or unintentionally, is that we should have no expectations of paying our share of the burden of government. Historically, concentrating wealth within a small minority has lead to the decline of every nation. A good read, if available might be Boiling Point, and Politics of the Rich and Poor, both by Kevin Phillips (former campaign chairman for Richard Nixon); or The Shock Doctrine, by Naomi Klein. There is no historical evidence to suggest that a nation’s middle class (the strength of every national economy) is protected or supported in an oligarchical system such as is being constructed by this current administration. I am not a capitalist. I believe in entrepreneurship, but capitalism violates my Christian ethic. People will always be more important that money. It is rather like Jesus says – you either love God or you love Money, you cannot love both. I side with God.

      • oldereyes Says:

        You have the annoying habit of, instead of directly addressing what I say, giving me your interpretation of what I say. Your assumption that I view redistribution of taxes as a definition of taxation is a perfect example. You really have no interests in knowing what I mean. Your goal is to press your opinion. I really don’t care what you believe, but if you want to post here, just say it without interpreting what I think for me.

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