Friday, May 6, 2016

Trump, and a Long-Lost Book

I've been thinking about Donald Trump's victory in Indiana and his apparent success at gaining the Republican presidential nomination.

For a long time I've maintained that Trump can't win the presidency. I still think that's true. His appeal as a political "outsider" won't last forever, and it's only a matter of time before he offends basically every voter one way or the other.

But I'm amazed he's come this far. I never would have believed it a few months ago. (Personal message to certain of my fellow countrymen and -women: WHAT ARE YOU THINKING?!)

My theory is, his success stems primarily from two factors: a lack of appealing Republican alternatives, and our celebrity-worshipping culture and media. I think a lot of voters are entranced by Trump because they've seen him on "The Apprentice," and they've conflated TV Donald with real Donald. (I think California voters did something similar when they first elected Arnold Schwarzenegger.)

I do think people want change, but Trump? Has the man expressed a single detailed, coherent policy? His vague promises catering to American xenophobia don't count -- they're not workable. Building a 2,000-mile-long wall along the Mexican border? Keeping muslims out of the U.S.? It's all ridiculous. I think he's bargaining that he'd never have to keep these promises because he'd be blocked by other branches of government.

Even fellow Republicans are cool to him. They clearly don't think he knows what he's doing, either.

As much as people dislike Hillary -- and as I've said before, I understand the accusations of opportunism, and the belief that she is too status quo -- she is experienced, and she can navigate the complicated global and congressional landscapes.

All that probably sounds obvious. I'm just saying I haven't changed my mind.

I had some interesting mail yesterday. Someone in Austin, Tex., returned a school library book that was checked out in 1973! They did so anonymously, and of course all record of this book has long been erased from the library itself, so there's no way of knowing who's had it on their bookshelf these past 43 years. And they spent more than $22 to mail it back -- probably far more than the value of the book!

Finally, I just want to share this photo of the front garden of some neighbors down the street. I love the peonies, the tulips, the forget-me-nots. So English!

(Top: From my commute to the hospital to see Dave, yesterday morning.)


37paddington said...

Beautiful garden!

ellen abbott said...

love the garden. and I am mystified about Trump. His supporters are going around attacking people, not just at his rallies, but people who are minding their own business. A tow truck driver left a handicapped person stranded because that person was a Bernie supporter. this is the America Trump stands for. I don't think he really wants to be president, he just wants to win, so what happens if he does get elected? the guy is a cry baby and a bully.

Red said...

Your Canadian neighbors certainly don,t want to see Trump as president. He's too scary. If he wanted something of ours he'd just walk in and take it!

The Bug said...

That garden is exactly what I would love to have... I'm just too lazy to do the hard work of getting any part of our yard ready for such a feast.

I'm just agog at the idea of Trump. And I know otherwise reasonable people who say they're going to vote for him. !!!

Linda Sue said...

The truly terrifying thing about Trump is that he has studied Hitler, his speeches and the psychology of the masses and is playing it hard! His rallies are hate filled vitriol stirring up the troubled population of racist, sexist, homophobic, Muslim haters in the banjo picking mentality of the backwoods, though these days they have come out of the backwoods and are in your face. No, Trump is more than the bombastic clown that he appears to be, he is a threat to the world. Agent orange! No body is safe from the violence and crazed bashing of "others" that his rallies incite. What astonishes everyone with any compassion in their beings, is the horror of the american people and the cruelty they are capable of in a stirred up mob.
The media has owned this election , given the clown a free ride.

alphabet soup said...

I so hope you are right about Trump. He seems to appeal to the xenophobia which often rages in many countries in the world.

That garden is simply lovely.

Ms Soup

alphabet soup said...

I so hope you are right about Trump. He seems to appeal to the xenophobia which often rages in many countries in the world.

That garden is simply lovely.

Ms Soup

Yorkshire Pudding said...

43 years of sleepless nights and guilt but eventually the library book was returned. Now the sender can live again... unless of course you contact the FBI to track the villain down!

jenny_o said...

It is frightening that Trump has been able to draw out the worst in people. He has somehow given legitimacy to those with small minds and big grudges. He has made it okay, even more than okay to those who do it - to be openly rude and cruel and self-centred. I think his money has had something to do with his rise to power, and the election process in the US seems to open the door for lopsided victories like his. I wonder if there will be any electoral change in the US's future? Our process in Canada always seems under discussion as well.

Sharon Anck said...

I heard an interview with a political advisor to John McCain when he was running for president. That man said he had never voted for a Democrat in his life but he would vote for Hillary if Trump is the alternative. I certainly hope there are many more who will do the same.
The book return is simply amazing.
And, that garden is spectacular. I love a garden that looks so natural that you don't realize it's been guided by a human hand. I'd love to sit on that bench with an iced tea and a good book.

Sabine said...

Maybe the person returning the book read this story of an overdue book incl. the fees:

jenny_o said...

I forgot to ask if you plan to read the returned library book!

Rafe's Hotel said...

Interesting: by the handwriting on the postal label, it would appear that whoever it is in Austin was raised from a very early age in the UK or Europe. Americans write differently.

And as for Trump ... save me, please. It's all the worst of the American psyche, and look at how many lazy people are falling for it. It takes guts to live in a democracy -- courage and effort -- and a little intelligence doesn't hurt either. You sure don't see any of that in the Trump campaign.