As I open my social media feeds I see that I am informed that Donald Trump’s agenda is going to hurt the middle class. I see that many people say he’s not their president. I’m told he will go down as the worst president ever.
Of course he isn’t even the president yet. 8 years ago I heard the same stuff about Barack Obama. And for the intervening years between then and now I’ve watched half the country complain about him, while the other half sings his praise.
However, those same people who are singing Obama’s praise spent the 8 years prior to his election, making comparisons between George W. Bush and Adolf Hitler. Because, you see, that’s what you compare a bad president too. If you haven’t noticed, Trump is also their latest Hitler.
But, prior to the election of W., we had Bill Clinton. If you’ve forgotten who that was, he was the guy the Republican dominated House spent years trying to block and impeach. That witch hunt was led by the Speaker of the House, Newt Gingrich. This is a man who has been working feverishly to elect Donald Trump. And while doing so, he is invoking many of his favorite family values and anti-smut rhetoric. This was pretty much what he used against Clinton, while the Newt himself was doing the same thing with his own mistress.
You see, the political operatives like this. No, actually they love this! The more you can whip the base into a lather, the more you can keep your job and get bigger donations. The more you can split the country, the more you can unite your base.
Never mind that you may destroy a country, so long as you can get a raise. Forget about the friendships you might destroy, so long as you can build alliances.
I remember when I was in school, I was always amazed when we discussed about the Civil War and they would talk about it being “brother against brother”. I remember thinking how horrible that would have been. In this highly charged political environment, it’s getting less and less difficult to imagine. But as I look back from president to president, I can see why it’s been happening increasingly with each election cycle. The political process is a cash cow. People can now make it their entire life’s work, and get very wealthy doing so. However, in order to do that you have to make sure people are motivated by something. And it’s far easier to get voters to unify behind not only an opponent, but an enemy of your entire lifestyle.
Hate pays the bills.