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Thursday, February 25, 2016

Trump's Appeal?

*Note: I'm not asking for name-calling or any other reprehensible language in the comments. Such will not be approved. Civil discourse, on the other hand, with polite disagreement or questions, is welcome.*
I'm seeing so much of, "how could anyone ever vote for Trump?" out there that I thought I'd share what I learned. Never fear: I didn't vote for him (I'm in NH), and couldn't understand his appeal myself beyond the whole "never stepped foot in Washington" bit.
I can certainly understand that sentiment. Washington is a bubble of prosperity in an ailing America except for a few havens. Driving through it from elsewhere presents a stark contrast. Government expands at the expense of the people who fund it.
Anyway, I did some reading and found that while Trump supporters come from all over the map in terms of demographics, he's doing best with the under-educated and lower middle class. Know why that is? Besides the fact that he talks more like normal people than the average politician and has a celebrity status?
It's because they've been the hardest hit economically, lost the most jobs, lost jobs to illegal immigrants, are now underemployed, have to pay the Obamacare fines because they aren't eligible for Medicaid, etc. It's important to note that the number of people out of the labor force is at a record high.
The unemployment rate dropped only because so many people gave up looking for work that they're not counted as part of the labor force. Teenagers can't find work. Homeless rates are super high nowadays too, not that they get much attention even though they're far higher than they were in Bush's time.
Clearly, the Democrats have left these folks behind, and that's why there are also quite a few Trump Democrats out there. His anger appeals to those angry with the Establishment of both parties. Children aren't growing up to be better off than their parents anymore.
It seems that once Trump has someone's support, they no longer listen to anyone suggesting he's not a fit candidate for POTUS despite his flip-flops, funding of the Establishment politicians in both parties, his unclear record as to whether he'll do anything he says he'll do if elected, and history of flat-out lying about other candidates whenever anyone asks him a question of substance.
That's too bad, but it's hardly surprising because there are a heck of a lot of Americans who support their chosen politicians blindly.
Also, I don't mind telling you that I voted for Cruz. Hillary has baggage so heavy I don't think she could win (and deservedly so, with that baggage, which includes Wall Street). Bernie is a socialist and the history of socialist countries isn't one of economic prosperity.
Marco Rubio doesn't have a great track record of doing what he'll say he'll do and lies about Cruz like Trump does (I've checked that they're lies, never fear). Carson's a good person, but doesn't show common sense. The others are out now anyway except for Kasich and he doesn't have prayer. Only Cruz is (mostly) honest, clearly supports the Constitution, is running a smart campaign from a solid and clear position, and I truly think he could win.
Now. I realize there are a great many of you out there who mightily disagree with my sentiments, and that's fine. What's not fine is being closed-minded to the flaws of your chosen candidate to the point of irrationally shouting names and flinging hate-speech at anyone who dares to disagree. That doesn't solve any problems, and it makes bad feelings worse.
To combat this uninformed state of affairs, I strongly recommend reading (or listening to) both liberal and conservative points of view so you can be aware of strengths ignored by one side and weaknesses ignored by the other, and vice versa. I recommend doing so for more than election years. We'll all be the more informed for it, and hopefully the more civil to each other as well. Change begins with us, not with government.'

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Election Day in NH!

I love elections, but I'm so nervous!

Not for the Dem race: Sanders should beat Hillary handily here in New Hampshire. Though come to think of it, Hillary may be the easier candidate to beat in the national election because of her shady past earning millions from giving speeches, Benghazi, the email scandal, and being in with Wall Street.

No, my nervousness is all tied to the GOP race today. Will the people of NH be smart enough to see through Trump's bullying ways and vote for someone else? Will they see his anger as matching their own in the problems we face as Americans or as (I think it) all a show to get him a position of political power? Will they be turned off by the inter-party name-calling? I surely hope so. He talks a good game but I strongly suspect that's all it is. I have absolutely no trust in him doing what he says he would do as president, and he shows no self-control or self-restraint as I would expect from a president of the United States.

I have grounds for hope. I learned yesterday that delegates get split up by percentage for candidates that get over 10% of the vote, and there are certainly plenty of candidates in the polling appearing to earn more than 10% of the vote. Phew! Trump can't get them all.

Even more hopeful, the Cruz campaign released a video today indicating that they think they will exceed everyone's expectations. I'd be thrilled!

For the record, I still admire Carson as a good man, but I couldn't think him presidential about the time that winter hit. His whinyness about "Carsongate" only solidified that opinion. He still exceeded his Iowa voting expectations with "Carsongate", and it's not like Iowans stepped forward angered that they would have voted for Carson over Cruz (credit to Rush Limbaugh for pointing that out).

I proudly voted for Cruz today. I've been leaning towards him since early January but I made up my mind with his solid debate performance Saturday night. Perhaps I'm not as last-minute of a decider as the average New Hampshire voter.

Cruz has shown that he's in control of himself. He's consistent on the campaign trail and consistent in debates. He's consistently sidestepped the media's attempts to trip him up by clear and concise explanations for his positions, history, or future policies should he be elected president. He's sincere, or comes across that way. He understands foreign policy. He's very smart and he's running a smart campaign and was smart enough not to compromise himself in Congress like Rubio did. I have full confidence that he'd at least attempt to do everything he's promising on the campaign trail, and he's the only candidate about whom I can say that.

I hope I sleep tonight!