Last week I posted about Trump’s rhetoric, which as I mentioned, as awful as it is, it is not that different from the GOP’s standard spiel these days. However, I think there are boxes you need to be able to check off to be qualified to be President that go before even any consideration of political views and policy positions. In my view, not just anybody can be President (or maybe I should say, not just anybody SHOULD be President). I think to be considered for the office of the Presidency, you must have the ability to reason. You have to have good analytical skills (no one can know everything about everything, but as President, you do need to have the ability to understand what your team of experts is telling and make sound decisions based on that information). I also think a President needs to have an intelligent curiosity. They need to have a good grasp of history, economics, sociology, civics, etc., both on a domestic and global scale. A President needs to have empathy, as he/she has to remember that they represent 324 million people, who obviously have different backgrounds, needs, desires, etc. than the President himself/herself. I could go on and on, but you get the point.
I think there are a lot of people who are saying “anyone is better than Hillary Clinton”. The implication of that statement is that either everyone has the qualities required to be President or that amazingly Hillary literally possesses the least amount of qualifications of every single eligible adult in this country. Now I’m not a Hillary fan by any stretch. I disagree with many of her viewpoints (her penchant for military use comes to mind) and do have trust issues with her, not to mention that having the Clintons back in the White House just feels so oligarchical. Still, is she qualified to do the job? Personally I think that’s an easy yes. She has the capability of doing the job, even if I don’t think I’m going to like the way she does it.
So in my view, the “anyone is better than Hillary Clinton” statement just simply isn’t true. Some? Yes. Many? Possibly. All? Of course not. So I really think that comment can be better translated to “I’m voting for the Republican no matter what”. If Bernie Sanders was the nominee, it would be “anyone is better than Bernie Sanders”. It’s a rationalization for voting for somebody that’s not a strong candidate. It means that in your view, political affiliation is by far the most important thing, and without the proper affiliation, none of the other things matter.
The flip side of the argument is “anyone is better than Donald Trump”. Statistically speaking, it is also pretty much impossible that literally everyone is better than Trump. The question really should be is Trump qualified enough (or closely enough as qualified as his opponent) to be considered for the highest office of this country? In my mind, the answer is a clear no. (At which point, you don’t even move on to comparing policy/political positions….you don’t have to.) Here are just a few things that has led me to this conclusion:
- His expertise is supposed to be business, but he really hasn’t been that successful: Watch the 30 for 30 documentary “Small Potatoes: Who Killed The USFL?” It was Trump’s failed scheme to move the USFL into the fall to go head-to-head with the NFL and try to sue its way into a merger. Additionally, Trump thought he could sell steaks through Sharper Image. Didn’t work. Trump Airlines? Failed. Trump Mortgage? Kaput. GoTrump.com? (a travel website to compete with Travelocity)? Redirects to his campaign site. Trump Vodka? No longer on the market. Trump casinos? You know, the thing he’s arguably known best for. He has repeatedly had to file for bankruptcy for those ventures. Not exactly what I would call “winning”.
- He has questionable ethics (and he’s kind of an a-hole): Watch the documentary “You’ve Been Trumped“. See how he treats the neighbors of one on his golf courses, and I believe you will find he has a strange way of building consensus (unless that consensus is supposed to be hatred of him). Look into Trump University and I think you’ll find it hard to argue that it’s anything other than a fraud. See how while Trump’s casinos were failing, they were also somehow still making him rich. See how Trump misleads investors (or at least allows others to use his name to mislead others) into thinking he’s involved in a project (or at least financially invested in) that he actually has only licensed his “Trump” name to, like Trump Tower Tampa.
- And he does things like this: Trump made up a pretend name (“John Barron” or sometimes “John Miller”) to be his own spokesperson. Seriously. For 10 years! Who does that? He’s made enough derogatory comments about women publicly to fill a sixty-second ad spot. He won’t release his tax returns. And this doesn’t even get into things alleged against him like tenant intimidation, sexual harassment, ties with the mafia, racial housing discrimination, casino rule violations, etc..
Now maybe this is my own bias and I am not thinking clearly. But I would like to think if somebody like Barbara Streisand or Alec Baldwin somehow was the Democratic nominee (or heck, Donald Trump himself as I think he could have easily decided to run as a Democrat…I don’t think he personally cares that much), I wouldn’t support them because “anybody is better than the “R” candidate”. All I know is I think Trump’s main “qualification” is that he is a celebrity who the press is obsessed with. Otherwise he is not qualified at all. On top of that, he is a very bad person. Not “anyone” would be better than him, but the list of people who are is large enough that it most certainly would include Hillary Clinton.