How the fuck did this happen?
No, I’m not asking how Donald Trump got elected President of the United States – that’s bloody obvious. A pile of people went to the voting booths and put a little “x” beside his name on the ballot, or pressed a button or pulled a lever or whatever-the-fuck it is they do down there.
Nor am I asking why they did that, which is also obvious: they think the magic-man will wave his fairy dust and make them all rich and powerful, without any of Hillary’s blah blah blahing. (When are the politicians going to get that “blah blah blah” doesn’t cut it anymore?)
No, what I’m asking is how all those alleged experts, self-assured commentators, talking heads, pundits, pollsters and pin-headed pen pushers could have kept reassuring me that it couldn’t happen. From each and every one of ‘em, the line was the same: “Trump’s done, Amen”. I’m looking at you Scott Gilmore of Macleans, who wrote October 31 (page 32) “Without some cataclysmic surprise, Donald Trump has lost”. Cataclysmic surprise indeed! And you Jonathon Gatehouse, writing in the same issue of the same magazine that Trump’s presidential hopes were “plummeting”. And you Nick Taylor-Vaisey, telling me just a few pages later his “campaign may be melting down”. That’s just one lousy magazine! [i]
Everywhere you looked, even the conservative ones were doing their “thank God that’s over” victory lapses before the race was even over. By what evidence, data or logic did they come to this complacent conclusion? Apparently just ‘cause all the other ones said so. “He’s so ridiculous, he couldn’t possibly make it. The People couldn’t be that stupid”.
Well, they can and they were. But these egg-headed experts were just as clueless.
Was it naivete? Wistful thinking or wilful blindness? Only Michael Moore, who actually talks to working class people, saw it coming. He tried to sound the alarm, but they didn’t listen to him either.
I remember after the first debate having a sinking, stinking feeling that Trump had it in the bag. “My money’s on Trump” I wrote in my journal. Everyone went on about how much more presidential, more professional, more eloquent, more logical, more factual, more inclusive, more policy specific, more graceful under pressure Hillary was, which was absolutely true. And it didn’t matter a bucket of dog spit! If any of that mattered, Trump wouldn’t have gotten that far.
Do you think a Trump supporter cares that he groped women? Hates Mexicans? Had no political experience? No fucking clue what he was talking about? If they cared, they wouldn’t have been Donald Trump supporters. So it didn’t matter how much more qualified Hilary proved herself to be, she couldn’t dent his narrative and didn’t really try. What she needed to do was try to undermine Trump on his own terms, demonstrating, somehow, that he couldn’t actually do what he promised, while she, somehow, could. How could she, or indeed anyone, have done that? Well. . .not by doing what she did. Not with all that blah blah blahing. . .
Trump had won, I felt it, I smelt it. But everyone, I say everyone, went on about how wonderful Hilary had been and how ridiculous Trump was and how it was as good as done. So of course I think to myself that I’m just imagining things because, after all, what do I know? I’m just a lousy peanut-gallerist, they’re the experts, they’re supposed to know this shit, not me.
Would it have made a difference? Probably not, but maybe the Trumpeters might not be so god-damned smug right now.
[i] Gilmore, Scott. “The Morning After Donald Trump” Macleands, October 31, 2016, page 32
Gatehouse, Jonathon “Could This Get Any Worse?” Macleans, October 31, 2016. page 28
(Damn friggin’ right it can!)
Taylor – Vaisey, Nick. “The Perfect Voters”. Macleans, Occtober 31, 2016