We have become anxiously mindful of the inception of a pernicious and insidious disease, which had its debut apparently, in tandem with the early appearance, as candidate, of the new President-Elect. The diagnostic presenting symptoms appear to be the simultaneous appearance of supremely confident declarations and their abysmal lack of factual basis; further, we have it on reliable sources that the new disease has lost no time in already metastasizing into an advanced stage of “fake news.”
In the interest of avoiding further infection, and instead, with the goal of promoting a salutary atmosphere, we have a disclaimer to assert as to the substantive content of the present writing: [ The analysis and proffered explanation for the results of the recent election is based, in larger part, upon our informed and attentive perception of the relevant events, and in smaller part on recorded fact.] This will serve as assurance that we have no intention of being a participant in the etiology of this unfortunate and newly discovered disease.
It seems indisputable that the outcome of the subject election was truly surprising, if not actually shocking, to just about everyone. Indeed, the prevailing party, himself, consistent with his character and celebrated, ever mono-focused goal, “winning”, had been publicly engaged in the creative manufacture of excuses for his own anticipated loss, including bogus claims of “media influence” and even, “voter fraud.”
A prodigious amount of time and energy is being expended in speculative possible explanation for this highly unexpected outcome. We too, in this note, would venture to join the cacophony of voices constituting this chorus; subject to the above disclaimer. It will be observed that this comment, in part, is a redux and an expansion of our recent writing, “The Chosen.”
The subject election did not appear to be the familiar numerical contest between democrat and republican, or liberal versus conservative and may effectively be best described with the employment of a metaphor drawn from the discipline of physical geology.
In the realm of physical geology, there is a fundamental and elemental difference between a “rock,” a solid fragment, essentially consistent in content, and a “conglomerate,” a solid fragment consisting of a heterogeneous assortment of rocks and other materials. To exploit the metaphor, this election was not the more common competition between rocks (identified political partys or distinct ideological groups) but rather, between conglomerates (of heterogenous composition). It might be illuminating and useful to comment on the prevailing conglomerate.
We have noted, over the years, that there is a significant percentage of the population that traditionally does not vote, conceivably, because they maintain a feeling of alienation from the country’s mainstream and voting would seem to be a meaningless waste of effort. This category of American is composed largely of persons of low information and little education; unsophisticated citizens (at times referred to by us as “flat earth people”) who are the most vulnerable to a demagogue’s unspecified promises of happiness and relief from their inarticulate state of misery (See: “The Chosen”). In the recent election, such unfortunate people, who are most in need and deserving of government assistance, were mesmerized sufficiently to vote against it.
Another significant component of the winning conglomerate, were folks of every stripe who are, “single issue” people. The successful candidate was, tactically, “all things to all people” and this cohort, as usual, chose to voted based upon a perception that the prevailing candidate agreed with them on such subjects as, opposing gun control, health care, women’s right to choose, Israel, immigration, or climate science. These mono-focused people vote with “horse blinders” and irrationally ignore all other vital issues. Significantly, they and countless others ignored the all-important and very relevant issue of the candidate’s suitability for office.
A heterogenous bloc of voters, including many of the currently unemployed and the “working poor,” voted for the successful candidate because they felt that they had received little help from the “do nothing” government and the Congress. This was manifestly unjust since it is generally understood that Congress (by its public admission) tactically blocked most of President Obama’s initiatives .Additionally, a large percentage of these people, in concert with the identified people of low information, were somehow convinced, by the wily and skillful demagogue, to support a tax policy in which the rate of taxes, essential to the financing of the nation’s operations, would be lowered on the billionaire class, which has the money, and raised in the case of middle and lower economic classes, that don’t.
Support was also discerned from a (hopefully, small) cohort of white supremacists and others who traditionally espouse an exclusively all -white, Christian nation and who seemed to perceive, in the many bigoted statements of the successful candidate, a wink and a go ahead nod to their perverse cause.
The “profit motive” is also seen as an ingredient of the victorious support conglomerate. The oil and coal energy people and those of other industries, including their respective stockholders, who care less about the planet and the health of its inhabitants, than about eliminating (public interest) regulation, saw opportunities for profits in the new context of an unprincipled businessman- turned- President.
Our system of democracy is based upon the necessary premise that the well-informed, literate citizen will interact with others and then cast an informed ballot in accordance with an understanding of his, and the nation’s, best interest. In consideration of the present circumstances, our enlightened citizens may jointly need to demand of government a (mandatory) incentive system of remedial adult education and tutorial programs, where deemed needed, to radically redefine the conception of success and celebrity greatness to models which provide profound and valuable contributions to American society.