Wednesday, 14 October 2020

THE BUCK FINALLY STOPS HERE

 

The coming presidential election will be decided by many issues including health care, policing, protests, a raging pandemic, and now the infection of the president himself.

 

But it really boils down to whether we accept Donald Trump’s version of reality.

 

While one, of course, wishes the president a speedy recovery his personal conduct while canvassing without a mask before large crowds with little thought of social distancing has been totally irresponsible.

 

You have only to look at the minute infection figures from Tulsa before his indoor campaign rally on June 20th and the current widespread contagion to see the damage he has caused.

 

And now we wait in trepidation to determine how many he and his entourage have infected in their Typhoid Mary tour of recent weeks. 

 

Although everything has been thrown in the air because of Mr. Trump’s cavalier behavior towards the virus there will be an election on Nov. 3rd.

 

So let’s assume that both Republican and Democratic candidates will still be standing.

 

Though he is currently appreciably behind Mr. Biden in both national and battleground polls Mr. Trump seems to be little worried, feeling that he underperformed in 2016 polls and is perennially favored by a “silent” majority.

 

Perhaps but I doubt this hidden strength will be as potent in the current polarized environment where all has been utterly changed by the president’s illness. 

 

Back in 2016 many middle-class male voters wouldn’t admit to their wives or partners that they were voting for the Access Hollywood tainted Trump.

 

But after four years of a relentless narcissistic bombardment uncommitted middle-class voters are as rare as Santa Claus on July 4th.

 

The working class never hid their antipathy to Mrs. Clinton and whenever I inquired from friends around the country about her prospects I got some variant of “Everyone around here is voting Trump.”

 

Those sources are less dogmatic four years later for I also hear variants of “Who the heck does this guy think he is?” - particularly since the president suggested he might not comply with the election result.

 

There appears to be little desire within any class for the Home of the Brave to morph into a banana republic - with or without paramilitary Proud Boy support.

 

However the president long ago realized that one step forward can always be followed with another step back.

 

Truth and consistency were never his strongest suits, but there has been one constant in his career - he does look out for number one.

 

He also practices a particular style of brow beating, the effect of which reminds me of the hangover that follows the downing of six pints and a couple of shots.

 

My gut feeling is that there’s a real “silent” majority that has grown tired of our daily national hangover.

 

It’s not as if the president is a ball of laughs. It’s like being out on the town with a caffeinated compulsive who never stops whining, despite his large fortune and beautiful wife.

 

Talk about being born on third base with a myopic pitcher on the mound! 

 

It’s important to remember that he inherited a booming economy. But his luck has finally run out. 

 

The deaths of over two hundred thousand from Covid-19 can no longer be brushed aside with “it would have been 2 million” if anyone else had been president. 

 

In his current medical condition not even the most fervent of his base will buy that one.

 

The millions who lost their jobs because of the lack of a concerted federal response to the pandemic are another frightening consequence of Donald Trump’s reality.

 

Most of these unemployed have also lost their health insurance, but I’m sure they won’t begrudge their ailing president the best care their tax dollars can buy.

 

Bluster and braggadocio have taken Mr. Trump on a remarkable journey from Queens to the White House.

But all of a sudden things are falling apart and the center is no longer holding. 

 

Still, as a haberdasher from Missouri once remarked “the buck stops here.” President Harry Truman understood that when you make decisions you must also accept responsibility for them. 

 

I wish Donald Trump a speedy recover and sincerely hope he’ll be in good enough health to face up to the price of his reality on Nov. 3rd.