|speaking at CPAC in Washington D.C. |
on February 10, 2011. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Some of us voted for George W. Bush in 2000, hoping for a return to the ideals of efficient (not non-existent) government and personal freedom. That hope quickly evaporated, as Bush was anything but fiscally responsible. Non-intervention went by the wayside, too. From the Patriot Act to No Child Left Behind, Bush was the president libertarian-leaning, local-government promoting voters feared. A Republican taking away rights, imposing federal mandates, and engaging in wars without end.
Our first votes for "W" were our last votes for W… and yet he won again (and with the popular vote) in 2004. We had no alternative, sadly.
But, the GOP since 2008 has entirely lost its sanity. The moderate core and the libertarian subset of the GOP have been trounced by petulant, childish voters claiming to be "conservatives" when they are in fact nothing but anti-everything.
|Hillary Clinton in Hampton, NH (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
But Donald Trump is not the answer, any more than Bernie Sanders was the answer. Occupy or Tea Party, the populists are angry but without real solutions or reasonable leaders.
Donald Trump is not a small government, local control, pro-meritocracy, anti-discrimination candidate. He's no libertarian, no adherent to Adam Smith, and not even a moderate Republican. He's an angry man, another angry septuagenarian.
Hillary Clinton is likely to become our next president. Not because she's popular with 70 percent of United States adult citizens. She's not even popular with half of the American electorate. She's simply the default alternative to a lousy opposition candidate who doesn't even represent the opposition party.
Hillary Clinton will overreach her mandate. All recent presidents have, especially Obama and G. W. Bush. President Obama has paid a lasting electoral price for the healthcare overhaul that still might collapse (co-ops are failing, insurers are losing money) under its own weight. Bush acted as if he won the popular vote in 2000, when he should have governed with humility.
Clinton and humility? Forget it. She's going to be the second oldest president in history because she, quite literally, never gave up wanting to be president. She'd be 78 by the end of two terms. She has worked her entire adult political life for this goal, and she's going to use that position to leave a mark.
If (and there's some doubt) Clinton pushes hard to the left, especially with court appointments, the United States will be changed for a generation. This might, might reinvigorate the classical liberalism of the GOP. A hard-left leader might restore the moderates of the Republican leadership. Maybe.
Sadly, petulant voters gave the GOP Donald Trump. In the process, they are giving us Hillary Clinton as president.
Clinton could reach out to moderates. She could reject the Democratic base, a base that's drifting leftward while Germany, France, and the U.K. show signs of a rightward drift (center-right, for those nations). Clinton could finally be the peace-making bridge-builder we need. Or not.
My only hope is that if Clinton does overstep that the moderates of the two parties quickly find some common ground.
I'm sorry the two parties didn't solve problems for the middle class. Voters, however, went to the extremes in response.