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Reflections on the 2016 Election

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This last presidential election cycle seems to have been particularly divisive, at least if you examine some of the comments on social media. People have been particularly nasty when posting about candidates they did not particularly care for or their supporters. I have seen arguments online where people I thought were kind, soft spoken people have verbally, viciously attacked their supposed friends because they expressed a point of view different from the one held by the attacker. It's interesting to think that people seem to believe that these verbal attacks are going to change the minds of those who think differently. I believe the opposite is true. I believe that such attacks are going to cause those with differing opinions to dig in, fortify their positions, and mount counterattacks. That is what those in power are counting on.


I believe that we as a nation squandered a marvelous opportunity to really change the game during this election cycle. With two such divisive, corrupt, repulsive characters as Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton running as candidates for the two "major" parties, we had a real chance to instill a third party into the system that could have helped generate some real change to the system. That didn't happen. Fear of a "greater evil" taking power kept perhaps tens of millions in their little boxes and they voted for what they saw as the lesser of two evils. That was just what the power elite wanted as both these candidates are part of the establishment, and have been all along. It seems to me that fear continues to drive us rather than love, and that needs to change.

Mostly what I see is liberals quite surprised that, somehow, more people voted for Trump than voted for Clinton. Well, that's not strictly true as Clinton won the "popular" vote, and yet was somehow not able to win the electoral college. This has led many liberals to question the electoral college system, which has its purpose, and has them calling for an end to that institution and direct democracy elections for the president. Well, if that was the case, what happens when the majority don't even show up to vote? Technically, then, the majority has called for nobody to be elected. They don't want a president at all. What happens then?

More importantly, I have heard and seen many liberals asking the question like, how can so many people vote for someone who seems so crass and insensitive? This has shown me a lack of empathy coming from the left, for the answers to questions like that seem quite obvious to me. In short, people are sick and tired of the status quo. They're sick and tired of the power structure that has been there since, well, since before the creation of the Federal Reserve, or, indeed, since before the creation of the United States of America. They're sick and tired of this stagnant economy and feeling like we're swimming upstream and going nowhere. They're sick and tired of what's been happening and they want things to change. In short, the people who voted for Trump used the only tool they know of and voted for change, mega change, just like they voted for change when they voted for Obama. The problem remains the same, however, in that things are always changing and we have yet to see what kind of change this will create, if any. We have yet to see change that is desirable.

So, we had this election and now a certain sector of society is very upset. They are upset not only because Trump was elected, but because now there is also a Republican majority in both the House of Representatives and the Senate. They are worried about everything from what will happen to their favorite government program to even believing that a second depression will be ushered in by the Republicans. My liberal friend has pointed out to me that the last time this happened, a Republican majority in the Senate and House and a Republican as president, the great depression took place. He believes that we are on the brink of economic disaster. Perhaps he is right. I have been of the opinion that we have been on the brink of economic disaster for decades now, and yet I am now more optimistic about the future than I have been in a long time.

You see, I was quite surprised that Hillary lost. I thought for certain she had been ordained by the powers that be, those at the top who do not get voted in and out of power, but whose families have used their vast wealth and influence to maintain power for centuries. I still believe that Trump is part of the establishment, but it now seems to me that perhaps different factions of the power elite are battling against each other for supremacy, and now maybe it will become easier for the common folk to see this.

I think perhaps the time has come for us all to admit that we live in an oligarchy where none of us have any real power in the realm of national politics. A group of very powerful people set up their puppets to run for office and then tell the common folks "Here are the choices we give you, now vote, fight for the candidate you wish to see in office!" Then we are at each others' throats screaming about which bad choice we should make rather than demanding different, good choices. Meanwhile, those who really run things are in the shadows laughing at us, happy that we believe the illusion and keep ignoring them.

I don't believe for a second that Donald Trump is an outsider who is going to tear down the institutions of control that have grown up around the oligarchy and allow the common folk to start making their own decisions about who to do business with, but I am willing to entertain the possibility that he is part of a faction which will loosen that control in order to solidify their own power. But this raises a lot of questions in my mind. The first, but not necessarily the most important, is did Trump actually win the election, or was there some kind of manipulation of the actual results going on? If so, then what is the actual agenda of Trump and his cronies that paid for this? Perhaps the most important question I have is will Trump actually be able to fulfill his agenda, or will the established powers that are be able to thwart him and keep their own agenda of never ending war and a continued monopoly on currency in place? These next four years should be interesting.

Those on the left could have put an end to this. They could have demanded the Obama administration stop the wars. Instead they chose to tacitly support his drone attacks by withdrawing their war protestors that were so visible during the Bush administration and shelving that issue for the days when their guy is no longer in office. This has shown a light on the left's hypocrisy. They chose to protest against a wall being built and travel bans being put in place rather than concentrating their efforts on the bigger picture and protesting the power of corporations and the banking industry. They are trying to treat symptoms rather than cure the disease, and it's making them look like a bunch of whining children throwing a tantrum. They're the ones who insist on worshiping the power of the vote and declaring how great it is to live in a democracy, and yet when the elections don't go the way they want, the way they planned, and their preferred candidates don't win, they are the ones who yell "Foul!" the loudest. They, more or less, asked for Trump, and now they got him.

So now, after eight years of Bush and then eight years of Obama, both Republicans and Democrats should have a good idea of how libertarians have felt for decades now, if not centuries. We have never been properly represented by government. Both R's and D's are uniquely in a position now to really start seeing the points we freedom advocates have been spouting since, well, since forever. Perhaps now is the time to take the bull by the horn and really turn up the heat. Maybe now's the time for Libertarians to come up with some really clever advertising and start campaigning for the 2020 elections. It's never too soon to start implanting the ideas of liberty in the minds of the masses. It's never too soon to come up with some really glitzy advertisements to sell them on the idea of freedom. Perhaps something in the vein of lite beer commercials like, "Libertarians, more freedom, fewer taxes." Short, sweet and to the point, that seems to be what voters in America understand. Once the freedom train gets rolling, then the real work of making America great again, by making it free again, can start.


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Last Updated on Thursday, 16 February 2017 10:52