Tag Archives: Mitt Romney

Establishment or Dissent. Which one is it?

mitt_romney_speech_on_donald_trump

I’m struck by the hypocrisy coming out of the Trump camp.  In fairness, the “camp” I am referring to is not so much Donald himself but those who support him and seemingly gravitate to the term of surrogate.  Having spent an entire year hearing how Trump is anti-establishment, and following his success among voters sick and tired of the usual ways of Washington, I wonder by what right do Trump’s people insist that all Republicans should back their candidate?

I’m not questioning the legitimacy of his candidacy, solely based on the fact that he got to where he is through a Democratic process, but to aggressively demand that the likes of Romney, Ryan and the Bush’s have some sort of obligation to support him now that he is the presumptive nominee is opportunistic hypocrisy at its worst.  It’s almost like Trump’s surrogates are saying, “we won, now fall in line whether you like it or not”.

This issue does a lot to crystallize the major issues people have with the specter of a President Trump.  As one who is not convinced he is actually a racist demagogue but still potentially very dangerous, I see this issue as a very clear indication of what we might be looking at should he ascend to the position of leader of the Free World.  A presidential candidate’s benefits and dangers are not merely based on their words or actions but very much based on the impact those words and actions have on their supporters.  Trump’s responses to those who choose to not support him are very much what they’ve been throughout his campaign, mocking ridicule and name calling.  As non-presidential as that might be it’s not dangerous per se.  But his surrogates grab the torch from him and then take a different approach.  They go on the attack against those who choose not to support him, taking the approach of almost bullying them into changing their positions. It’s just a matter of time till the names of those Republicans not supporting him will be spoken of by Trump’s surrogates with the same venom they have when speaking of the Clintons or President Obama.  But what is the deal here?  If they are so anti-establishment, how does it make any sense for these surrogates to claim wrongdoing on the part of the establishment types unwilling to support their candidate?  If you are anti-establishment how can you demand the establishment concede? It’s one or the other, make your pick.

I know it’s a free country, for now at least, and that no laws are being broken when Trump’s followers go on the attack against his opponents, but the climate being created is a volatile one at best, and just like in international conflicts that are deemed powder kegs, the slightest misstep or out of the ordinary event could cause a disaster.  Trump might really love Hispanics, not just Tacos, but the danger in his candidacy remains, not just because of him but because of those who follow him.

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Something (it rhymes with Mitt)just got real and it’s all the Kardashian’s fault

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In an unprecedented action in American politics, the Republican nominee from the last election spoke about the inadequacies of the Republican front-runner in this election. Mitt Romney spoke today on national television to make the case against Donald Trump.  He referred to Trump as a “phony” and a “fraud”.  Trump fired back, calling Romney a “failed candidate”.  Is it possible they’re both right?  Could the nation be anymore divided?  Is all of this making it almost a certainty that a year from now we will have a second President Clinton?  It’s not a stretch to imagine the answer is yes to all of these questions.  The biggest question is, what has happened to the United States of America?

I blame the Kardashians more than anyone else.  Well sort of.  I’m kidding to some extent, but let’s face it.  We now live in a reality TV culture.  Whether it is scripted or not, people like watching a show that pretends to be real life.  Personally I prefer comedies and dramatic TV shows I know to be rehearsed fiction. The culture of the Kadashians has lead us to a fascination in all that is Reality TV.  Donald Trump, king of all apprentices, is as much part of the Reality TV culture as anyone else.  As a matter of fact, “The Donald” was somewhat off the radar till he became a hit again by declaring to many unfortunates, “You’re fired!”.  Now he is running for president, putting on a show, and the American people, myself included, are engrossed by the entertainment of it all.  I can pretend to be above the fray, but the truth is I’m excited about tonight’s debate.  Not like I would be about a fascinating documentary, but more like I would be about an ice hockey game between two teams with bad blood.  Why? Because I know there will be a fight.  As a matter of fact, this election cycle is looking more and like the WWE or the WWF or whatever the most popular wrestling organization calls itself right now.  Wait, I just remembered what they call themselves.  The Republican Party.

This falls very much into the category of, if it wasn’t so tragic it would be funny.  You have John Kasich, a decent man, with strong credentials and adult behavior languishing at the bottom of the pack not because he doesn’t have a good message, but because compared to “The Donald”, Cruz Control, and Groucho Rubio, the Governor of Ohio is just too plain boring.  Meanwhile, Dennis Miller, someone who I seem to remember as once being funny, thinks he’s a rip when he says, “If the ballot is between Hillary or Anyone but Hillary, my vote goes to Anyone but Hillary.” I get it Dennis, you hate her and you think you’re still funny.

The unfortunate and very frightening thing about all of this is, that as we enter a time when our leadership may be more important than ever before, and our enemies will do everything they can to see us flounder, we are most likely going to have a president too hated by too many people for anything good to get done.  People need to realize, and realize fast, that when watching the Kardashians, if what you see goes all wrong, only one family suffers.  If however we translate that mentality to presidential politics, millions of families will suffer.  Is it worth all this “entertainment”?  I think we all know the answer to that one.

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Who suffers from Election and Disaster Fatigue?

I am an American, and truly believe that as a whole we’re a good bunch.  With all my flaws I am by no means qualified to say otherwise, but since I don’t want my words to be misinterpreted, I happily begin by complimenting my fickle countrymen for their basic decency and kindness.

As we look back to the recent presidential election, I can’t help but sense that an election fatigue has set in.  Going back to when the Republicans had what was close to a football team on the debate stage, till the final contest in which the incumbent President Barack Obama defeated his Republican challenger Mitt Romney, the process has been so long I truly believe many are happy it is over.  Even those on the winning side.

The good thing about the timing of the election was that it came just in time to help deal with Disaster fatigue.  Please forgive me if this comes across cynical.  That is not my intention.  I do not believe that most people who felt bad at the peak of Superstorm Sandy no longer feel bad.  I do however feel that many are less fascinated by the news reports than they were in the immediate days that followed.

All these stories not only continue, but they continue to be important and relevant.  The presidential election in of itself is not as important as what gets done moving forward.  Everyone knows we have a big mess on our hands and that the President, together with the Senate and Congress need to move into action and get things on the right track.  But enough about the election now. It’s old news.

Hurricane Sandy in many ways is two stories.  The first story was the immediate storm and the drama and serious impact it had.  The second story, the more serious one, is the story of the people who have suffered and still suffer as a result of the storm.  This is a story that unfortunately will continue for quite some time.  People are homeless, hungry and cold.   They are frustrated and despondent and will be needing help for a very long time.  But the story of the storm itself, the floods, fires, storm surges, well that’s old news now.

Gas shortages and long lines is becoming old news as well.  Unless of course fights break out while people wait in line.  Then the news becomes exciting again.  We are a sensationalist society and when the story loses its sensationalism the public loses some interest.  That doesn’t mean we become uncaring.  There are so many good people, people better than me, who give so much time to help those in need.  It’s just that unfortunately people’s suffering is never really news.  It doesn’t go away and being that it is a constant, loses its headline status.

Part of the biggest challenge facing us is to see to it that when these stories lose front page stature they don’t lose their importance.  It is incumbent on anyone with any audience, even a small one, to seek out and find the stories of those who need help.  That way we can continue to be the sensationalist society we obviously and honestly want to be, while not turning away from those who truly need our help.

If any of you have stories of people in need that you wish to share, please email me at hollandsheroes80@gmail.com.  Sometimes the greatest help starts from the most unlikely source.