Wednesday, May 4, 2016


Indiana provided the predicted outcome.  Trump ruled the waves.  Sanders won (a Pyrrhic victory).  Cruz got stuck in a negative spin of his own doing. His running partner, Carly Fiorina, did not help in projecting a more "mellow" image. Both were seen as the "evil twins".  Clinton still prevails in the Democratic camp and is set on winning, rather than loving.  Bernie Sanders is sliding on the downwards electability bell-curve but should not be underestimated. California is not a slam-dunk deal.

The paradox is that the so called angry white males and the discontented votes for Trump are absurd. If he loses, he will return to his nouveau riche niche.  If he wins he will be unpredictable. In any case, he will forget the discontented as soon as he sets foot on a red carpet, at home or in the White House.

This campaign is sad, for many reasons, the President being one of them. During the last White House correspondents dinner, Obama was in top form, master of his home brew of sarcasm and hauteur. While most of the American global political zone of exclusivity is slipping away, the President continues to play the game of the aloof, all knowing statesman, oblivious to the chorus of former aides who start spilling the beans in unflattering terms.

Commentators of the left and the right are becoming alarmed, in equal terms. They fear that Clinton could continue the legacy and might be unable to stop the retreat of US power and influence. Besides, they cannot imagine Trump in charge after all the inflated rhetoric and egomania.

The problem is that the "US strategic patience" of the current administation is seen abroad as an abdication rather than a vindication. America lets the weeds invade its backyard, while China and Russia are landscaping their own abroad. To reverse this trend will take more than a change of resident in the White House. There is a latent virus of isolationism in the air which is fed by failing education, biased information, faulty infrastructure... For one Amazon or Apple there are numerous bad schools, outdated airports, understaffed or outsourced services on the cheap, a health care system nobody understands, and insitutions which have become hostage to political spite.

Trump's "We are going to make America great again" resonates because the voters are fed up with what doesn't work.  Outside they see failure, inside they feel stuck.  These people are not going to vote about climate change.   Rather, they will vote against free-trade and in favor of the wall against Mexican immigrants. They are wrong on both sides.  Trade crates competition and innovation. Without Mexican labor, parts of the US economy would come to a halt.

Mrs. Clinton will have an uphill battle.  Sanders will continue to play Savonarola on her left. Trump will try to torch her past, present, husband and more. This is getting ugly. The horrible Trump/Cruz battle was only an appetizer for worse to come.  I hope Clinton will keep her cool, but she is human after all, something the robotic Trump is not. It is hard to fight contradiction and selective memory-loss head on. The Republican probable nominee is more about commerce than about business. Gore Vidal said that commercialism is the ability to do well what ought not to be done at all.

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