This blog was originally intended to cover two subjects, our lives as ex-pats in France and my life with the trombone. However, as an American who’s been over here through two election cycles, I feel compelled to say something about this one if for no other reason than I'm still an American and this is a much better platform for expressing my opinion than Facebook. For one thing there’s no limit to the number of characters I can use. For another, if I shut off the comments I won’t have to deal with anonymous dickheads or the opinions of people I don’t know but have for some reason friended me on Facebook and have turned out to be dickheads or, worse yet, people I do know who have turned out to be dickheads. So I might as well get right to it.
A vote for Donald Trump cannot be justified or rationalized under any circumstances whatsoever. None. I don’t care how much you hate Hillary, liberals, the “lamestream” media, gays, blacks, Jews, Muslims, Mexicans, Puerto Ricans, in fact foreigners in general, immigrants despite the fact your Italian, Slovak, Croatian (insert any other European but usually Eastern European country here) grandparents never really did learn to speak English, Yankees - you get the picture. This tells the world that you hate all this more than you love your own country. In fact, anyone voting for this degenerate primate is ipso facto an ignorant, selfish, uncaring and seriously deluded prick. I hope I’ve made myself clear.
We have, however, been lead to believe over and over again, not only in the right-wing dumb-o-shpere but by legitimate sources as well, that Hillary Clinton might be just as untrustworthy. In fact, inexplicably, polls show that Americans show more trust in Trump, a life form seemingly incapable of speaking the truth. Not only are his diatribes provable bullshit, they're frightening. For almost 27 years, I worked for the FBI, including 20 years as an agent. In all that time I knew one agent who admitted and was proud of being a liberal. The bureau is overwhelmingly Republican and so it’s not surprising they wouldn’t support Hillary. The Clintons might be the most thoroughly investigated couple ever and in all this time not one charge has stuck. Believe me, if there was anything to find, FBI agents would have found it. It just isn’t there so I have no trouble at all in supporting Hillary Clinton for President. In fact, if you look at the rest of the field, she’s the only real choice and, to be a bit sexist, the only one in all who ran, right or left, with a real set of cojones. The way I see it, she’s a female Lyndon Johnson. Plus nobody in my lifetime has done more to prepare for the job than she has. In any case, I’ve never seen a clearer choice.
Just to dispel any potential charges of being a “bleeding heart”, allow me to recount all my previous Presidential votes: 1972-Nixon, 1976-Ford, 1980&84-Reagan, ’88&’92, Bush The Elder, ’96-Dole, 2000-a write-in for McCain, 2004-Kerry, 2008&’12-Obama. I was a Republican for most of my life but by the middle of the W administration I couldn’t in good conscience continue to support a party that no longer reflected what I thought was good for the country. Republicans are interested in one thing and that’s power. They’re wrecking the place and if you vote for them you’re helping.
Which brings me to the real problem in American politics and that’s the voter. It’s been demonstrated time and again that those voting Republican are, at the very least, seriously misinformed and ignorant. Thanks to the internet, at least half of us now live in an echo chamber and choose “facts” not by what the evidence indicates but by what they wish to believe or which church they attend. It is not symmetrical and Democrats are not "just as bad." As a brand new FBI agent, I spent a substantial portion of my first year chasing white supremacists around the Pacific Northwest. That was in 1984 and much of the idiocy these people believed has now found its way into the mainstream of Republican thought. It’s time for this shit to be confined to the dustbin of history but don’t look for it to happen any time soon. One way or the other, the next few years in the United States are going to be ugly.
Okay, that’s enough. Let me get back to playing my trombone and enjoying life. If things go the wrong way, at least I’ve spared myself the step of leaving the country. At the risk of being maudlin I’m getting out of this with something I still happen to believe in and hope you do, too.