The U.S. election results bring the country to the edge of a precipice. It is hard to overstate how catastrophic the presidency of Donald Trump may be for the United States and the world. A profoundly ignorant man, he won on the strength of the malignancy contained in his campaign promises, all as hollow as his alleged wealth and his absolute lack of qualifications for the highest office in the land which, scary as it is, makes him the most powerful man in the world, if only for the scale of the economy he will run and the nuclear arsenal.
The potential for lasting damage is enormous. The executive office in the U.S. is extremely powerful. He will too, now, be able to shape the Supreme Court for decades to come, with likeminded retrogrades.
It was bound to happen. The steady degradation of the Republican Party – the party of Lincoln, may he rest in peace – into a grouping of Know Nothing ignoramuses had the potential of unleashing a catastrophe on the country such as the one that happened yesterday. A man whose main campaign promises have been to build a wall along the border with Mexico, expel Muslims or turn them away (just because they were born into a religion; they had lesser say in that than Mr. Trump in his hairdo) and ditch trade deals – in addition to passing the bill to NATO allies and giving the Russians a free hand east of the Danube, a geography that to Mr. Trump may be as alien as the rings of Saturn – are just a sample of how massive and apocalyptic his incompetence is.
But worse than Mr. Trump are those who voted for him. There may surely be decent people among them. Yet they voted for a foul-mouthed blusterer, a man who bankrupted his own companies many times over and who owes his wealth to shrewd market moves and powerful connections. As we all know, that does not amount to wisdom.
His sickening comments about women, his mocking of a disabled reporter, his appalling winks to the gun lobby, and let us forget for a moment his repeated lies about President Obama being born in Kenya –it was all of that that appealed to his followers. We strongly suspect that they don’t really want to “Make America Great Again.” They were probably boiling with the pent-up fury of eight years under a Democratic president, one for the ages. If the tallies are to be believed, these supporters also include the so called “evangelical voters.”
These hypocrites helped put in the White House a man who has not shied from exposing his base behavior and discourse, and even bragging about it. They either have not understood what their religion is about, or they are as phony as the candidate they inflicted on America, like those red hatted people at Mr. Trump’s election headquarters in one of his gaudy properties in New York, whose mere sight evoked fears of a coming proto-fascist regime, one even worse than the one the world suffered under George W. Bush.
The dignified reactions by Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and President Obama just enhance the contrast with the man that will take over as the 45th president. As Paul Krugman has said in The New York Times today, perhaps the U.S. is a failed society. So for us, this is not the time for platitudes about unity and belief in America. It is a time to be vigilant and make this man accountable for his every action. The upside down flag is a sign of distress. That’s where the United States is now.