Inappropriate sharing, incomprehensible ramblings, uncalled-for hostility: yup, it's a blog.

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Arguments, Closing

In New Hampshire, election places are now open (and possibly closing--NH seems to exist in dogs-life moments), and we're well on our national path to a new fate. As usual, we have two paths even when a few among us in need of corrective lenses see at least four paths. And no matter the amount of paths, each leads deeper into the vagueness of a snow-covered wood (only one of the paths will, of course, lead us to a denuded forest, but that's not what I'm discussing right now, you climate denying assholes).

Since those of you who are not interested in voting for Hillary Clinton are not interested in facts--or have some weird interpretation of facts--I won't bother using facts. Voting has begun, after all, and what you've heard is what you believe.

I'll just say this: Hillary Clinton is a terrible campaigner. She is not good at stumping, she is not good at debating, and she is not good at making you feel good about yourself. She is not someone you'd want to have a beer with, and she is not someone you'd trust if you went shopping with her. None of those things is her job. And when she's actually doing her job, she's quite good at it.

I bumped into an older woman today. She's regal and a Southern expat like myself, and about Hillary's age. I've known her for years, and we've had quite a few fun and animated political discussions. She said this, after I made a joke about perhaps never seeing her again after Wednesday: "I just don't know what we're going to do. Both of them [guess which both] are corrupt as all get-out, and neither of them care about it."

It saddened me that this woman felt both Clinton and Trump were equally corrupt.

"And she is a war hawk!" the woman said, placing her hands to either side of her head. "Thanks, I really need more war!"

As I nodded, shrugged, and winced, the elderly woman continued. "And Bill will be prowling the White House. Who knows what he'll be doing."

"Or not doing," I suggested.

"Imagine the future Monica Lewinskys he'll accumulate!"

"Maybe," I said, "they should sprinkle saltpeter in his food."

The elderly lady, perhaps the only person I encountered today, got the joke, and laughed. "There's an idea!" she said.

Except it wasn't an idea. It was a reflexive comment on how women use Bill Clinton's actions to justify their own distaste for Hillary Clinton.

(Which is, I should add, not my man way of discounting Bill's actions.)

One of the weirder things about this election is that women are more concerned with defending Donald Trump's recorded admissions of sexual assault than Bill Clinton's, and pretending either men have anything to do with Hillary Clinton's ability to govern.

"Honey," one can almost imagine Hillary saying. "I know it's late and I'm about to negotiate a trade deal with Hitler's younger kid, but could you put the hooker down and go to bed?"

There are four paths diverging in the wood, and which one will you take?

There's this path: "I don't know, President Stein, but I took a vaccination and guess rather than developing autism I hallucinated you being President."

There's this other path: "President Johnson, D.C. is not in the actual state of Washington."

There's this twisted, dark path: "It's not for me to say, sir. I'm just the Press Secretary. But I do have Putin on the line."

And this other path: "Madame President, Bill's in the secretary pool again. And Prime Minister Trudeau is on line three."

There are many reasons not to vote for Hillary Clinton. None, I'm afraid, involve her ability to do the job assigned to her. Most, it's true, involve reasons having nothing to do with her public service. Refusing to vote for her on principle is like refusing to breathe because someone farted.

Or like refusing to cite a certain Frost poem at a high school commencement because it's been done before.

Look: my point is, one can take the road not taken. But you ultimately know who's woods these are, and when the path diverges into a rather startling four paths, the only difference it makes is what you tell future generations which path you voted to take. And that you get your eyes checked.

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