Bernie or Bust? Okay.

Choices, choices.
Choices, choices.
Go. Go if you must. But be sure you know exactly where you’re going. Your destination is painfully clear. You will be joining the racists, the xenophobes, the misogynists, the cowardly, and the bullies. You will be embracing the slime encrusted fever dream of people who live in a past that never was. You will be releasing your fragile grip on the reality regular people live in to hug a fetid pile of dystopian dung. Whether you pick a pretty Jill Stein ribbon or a gaudy Gary Johnson bow to class up your package of petulance, it matters not one whit. The end result will be the same. Your choice benefits only one person, Donald Trump.

Please don’t bring up Ross Perot or Ralph Nader. Neither is applicable here. Ross Perot was fun to watch but never garnered enough votes to be taken seriously. Nader, for all the talk of his throwing the election in favor of George W. Bush, never got enough support to even earn one electoral vote. Not a single one. Neither was a factor at any level.

That said, their quixotic runs did bring attention to larger issues that later got filtered into laws, or at least serious discussions.

In neither case was America’s position in the world threatened. In no case was an individual citizen’s liberties as imperiled as they are now.

If Trump wins;

  • You can kiss the Affordable Care Act goodbye.
  • You can kiss all LGBTQ rights to marry goodbye.
  • Actually, just kiss any LGBTQ protections of any kind goodbye. There’s them darn evangelicals to appease, don’t you know.
  • You can kiss our place in the world goodbye. If he quits NATO, as he has threatened, you can bet one global response will be to increase tariffs on all U.S. exports, which would cripple our economy and shutter international businessmen and banks. Other responses could park us in a depression we may never escape.
  • You can bet the Civil Rights Act, already threatened, would hit the trash bin.
  • Since he’s lauded Vladimir Putin as a great leader all you need do is look a little east to see what America’s in for. Any dissent is jailed, so while you’re kissing shit goodbye, make sure to wave at the First Amendment as it floats away.

No, this isn’t hyperbole. These are simply bullet points based on Trump’s stated positions.

We’ll ignore, for now, his treasonous request for Russian spies to undermine democracy. Something tells me that, after the election, someone will crook a gnarled forefinger and say “Lissen ‘ere boy, ya’ll done bad, an now it’s time to pay the piper.”

If he wins, it won’t fucking matter anyway. We’ll all be too busy learning Russian for free.

On the plus side, I happen to like Borscht & vodka.

Henry M. Paulson Jr., chairman of the Paulson Institute, former U.S. treasury secretary, and chief executive of Goldman Sachs, is a staunch conservative, and lifelong Republican, so I’ll let him end this blog.

Simply put, a Trump presidency is unthinkable.

As a Republican looking ahead to November, there are many strong conservative leaders in statehouses across the United States and in Congress, whose candidacies I am actively supporting. They have a big job to do to reinvent and revitalize the Republican Party. They can do so by responding to the fears and frustrations of the American people and uniting them behind some common aspirations, while staying constant to the principles that have made our country great.

When it comes to the presidency, I will not vote for Donald Trump. I will not cast a write-in vote. I’ll be voting for Hillary Clinton, with the hope that she can bring Americans together to do the things necessary to strengthen our economy, our environment and our place in the world. To my Republican friends: I know I’m not alone.

Mr. Paulsen’s article, originally in the Washington Post, is nuanced and well reasoned. If you’re interested in fact based reasoning I strongly suggest you give it a read.

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