Wednesday, November 9, 2016

2016 Election Results Update - Trump Wins White House

It is very early in the morning on the day after Election Day in America. It is so early, that it is still dark outside.

In a few hours, daylight will rise, and at least locally here in New Jersey, but there will be a certain lingering darkness.

The results of this election, and particularly the presidential election, are an embarrassment. We as Americans should be embarrassed with this result.

Frankly, we should be embarrassed with both of the major party candidates, who both shared record high unfavorability ratings for major party candidates. Neither of them were trusted at all, often even by members of their own party. 

Ultimately, the results of this election are seen as a shock by many. Republicans won across the board, but the biggest and most obvious win for them was the presidency, with Donald Trump winning it outright, and convincingly at that.

The results were stunning for many, myself included. Many people did not see this coming, and I will admit to being one of them. Frankly, as disappointed as I have been with the results of past elections (particularly 2004), I did not think we would stoop to a point where the nation would elect to the White House a man who bragged about the size of his penis during a presidential debate, who boasted about all of the women he grabbed by the pussy and had sex with, and who insulted whole groups of people, including but not necessarily restricted to women, blacks, Hispanics, Muslims, the disabled, and veterans. 

Man, was I ever wrong!

The election was close, at least in terms of the number of popular vote. It is still not impossible that Clinton might wind up winning the popular vote, although she certainly did not come close to winning the electoral college. Trump managed to win enough states, and moreover, managed to flip some traditionally blue states - particularly Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Michigan. 

Just unbelievable.

Now, America upped Britain by having it's own election to, pardon the expression, trump Brexit. Yes, this was America's Brexit, and the world's financial markets were already reacting well before Trump had officially won the election. 

You know, with such a tight race, it makes me wonder what the future of both of these two major parties are.

A couple of weeks ago, Hillary looked like a lock, and I remember some prominent Republicans were seemingly calling for Trump to step aside.

My, how things have changed.

Let me be honest and state clearly that I could not stand Hillary Clinton, and frankly, I hope that the Clintons finally take the hint with this and just go away. There time has come and gone, and they clearly did not offer anything really new to inspire the country. They are political animals who only move on a position once it is deemed politically profitable, and that is not the kind of leadership that this nation needs.

That said, now that the improbable prospect of a Donald Trump presidency will become reality, I am fearful. I thought about my son, and thought about Trump's overly easy mentioning of war, of the carelessness of his words, even in relation to our staunchest traditional allies when he mentions that they are not paying their part. I am worried about just how serious he will be with deporting immigrants, and I am fearful about his skepticism of the reality of climate change.

In so many ways, this was the wrong direction for the country to take. Like with Trump's stance on climate change, the country is in denial about certain realities. And what makes this particularly alarming is the staggering anger of so many of Trump supporters, and their tendency to believe what they want to believe, without any support from the facts.

I think of my son right now, who most likely is asleep and will wake up to the prospects of a Donald Trump presidency, and I worry.

This election result is more than just a national embarrassment. It is a national disgrace, one that will linger for a long, long time to come. Americans watched Britain become the scapegoats and the laughing stock around much of the world following the Brexit vote, but the United States has now surpassed that, and has become the laughingstock of the world by voting a joke gone too far, a clown, into the White House, into that prestigious position that has been held by the likes of George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Dwight Eisenhower, and John F. Kennedy.

Once again, we are showing the world how the mighty have fallen. And the saddest aspect of that inconvenient fact is that his supporters believed that he truly represented a change from the fundamental unfairness of the system that we live under, even though he himself manipulated that very system, and screwed many, many people along the way, in order to get to where he is now. They probably believed that this country was in decline, which is is, but that he will actually restore America's status to greatness, even though he is a proven liar, lacks class, and reacts to provocation far too easily, while not giving enough thought to serious and weighty matters.

What is the expression about sleeping in the bed that you make?

Again, it is a sad, sad day in America. Reagan had those famous commercials about it being morning again in America, and indeed, right now, it literally is morning. But it is a morning where we find a classless man who embodies the very worst that this country has to offer has been elected to the highest and most prestigious office in the land. I cannot shake that nasty feeling that this country became the laughingstock of the entire world with this election, that we revealed a dark side about ourselves, our collective stupidity, and our blind anger and prejudices.

These are unbelievable, and very strange time, in our country, and in our world. Yet the sad reality is that we keep seeing so-called "leaders" who are probably the last people we should ever allow in positions of power. That tradition continued with the results of yesterday's election.

And I am worried...


  1. Although I suspected Hillary Clinton was in trouble when the initial vote tallies weren't overly favorable, it's when Pennsylvania wound up in the Trump column that I realized the sheer grotesque horror of our predicament was inescapable. Pennsylvania – a state that hadn't voted Republican in a presidential election since you and I were both in high school. It's a paradox for me: I'd be lying if I were to say that I expected this result, yet I'm not especially shocked, either. I knew that there are vast legions of people out there who – how to put this delicately – aren't exceedingly bright. But my math was off, because their numbers are clearly greater than even this world-weary pessimist could have imagined. I'm reminded of that old SNL sketch featuring Robert De Niro. I don't remember it verbatim, but if memory serves he basically points to a map of the US, explaining how the states that voted for Gore are "the United States of America", while those that voted for Dubya constitute "Dumbfuckistan". That chasm continues to widen. I remember a French reporter describing the mood in Europe following Dubya's reelection as "la gueule de bois". While that term usually refers to having a hangover, he was using it to convey something that surpasses mere incredulity, or even a "creeping malaise" (Pink Floyd reference) – a feeling of numbness. I think the next four years have the very real potential to make the bad old days almost seem like paradise lost by comparison. Here's hoping I'm wrong. As you know, I don't count myself among the ranks of the faithful, but here's hoping I'm wrong about that, too. God fucking help us.

  2. I was stunned, and perhaps there was some measure of shock to see the country actually go through with it. However, like you, a part of me was definitely bracing for it. It was hard to ignore that Hillary Clinton's momentum just stopped cold a couple of weeks ago, while Trump was surging. Driving around in suburban New Jersey, I must have seen - no exxageration - at least 10, and maybe up to 20 Trump signs and bumper stickers for every Clinton sign and bumper sticker. Plus, the country has not changed all that much since the infamous 2004 election, when George W. Bush won the presidency for the first time, even after the country had seen what he did for four long years before that. So, like you, I was actually kind of half-expecting it, but hoping I was wrong. That said, just like with the 2004 election, once it actually happened, it hit like a ton of bricks.

  3. I'm not surprised by the Trump signs you saw. As you know, some people make the mistake of thinking that the "blue states" are full of lefties and progressives, when in actuality once you veer from the major cities, their immediate suburbs and perhaps a few college towns, people in those states are often as conservative as their red state counterparts, and not above voting for someone like Trump. Case in point: a number of NJ counties voted for him, as did a sizable majority of counties in NY.