February 4, 2016 5 Comments
Sadly, this is pretty much true. In some ways, we have been lying to ourselves all my life, and likely much longer.
[…] Maybe we vote largely on policy or, as they say, an assessment as to which candidate is best for our wallet, but character is a deal-breaker. Bad character equals no vote, it is thought. Hence: Unleash the dogs of investigative journalism and lay bare as many foibles, peccadilloes, and bad grade-school report cards you can unearth. It goes to character.
How much more do we need to see to know this notion is entirely preposterous? The only character issues most voters care about are the ones associated with the candidates they have no intention of voting for: Yes, those character flaws they care about. A lot. […]
Three presidents, [Kennedy, Nixon, Clinton] all men of very questionable “character,” as that term is customarily (and rather incessantly) applied in the context of presidential political gymnastics. No, that’s not all they were, but it is certainly part of what they were.
All three were given a pass by the majority of the electorate, and they were given that pass for the same reason and in the same way Hillary and Donald are currently being given a “character” pass.
That Brings Us to Hillary and Donald
Does anyone—other than Hillary supporters—have the ability to un-see the completely obvious corruption, insider finagling, roaring personal ambition, arrogance, phony-baloney pandering, and habitual prevarication (okay, call it “Clintonian Parsing”) that has draped her entire career, a level of broad-based malfeasance that would not only disqualify anyone else for any public office, but most likely land him in the pokey?He is a guy willing to cut off the health insurance of a deathly ill infant nephew if it suits his purposes.
Does anyone—other than Trump supporters—not understand that he has made his fortune by cynically buying off politicians to get them to put their thumbs on the scale, his scale; that, over and over he has shown a willingness to say or do anything to further his own personal interests, happy to roll over anyone or anything that stands in his way; that at his own father’s funeral all he could talk about was himself, that he is a guy willing to cut off the health insuranceof a deathly ill infant nephew if it suits his purposes; that he is a nasty, mean-spirited bully obsessed with self-aggrandizement so rampaging that it is possible to imagine him doing just about anything, changing any position at any time, in order to get his next magazine cover; and that his level of debate discourse rises only insignificantly above “Your mother wears combat boots”?
They don’t care. Or, more accurately, character only counts if it’s the other guy we’re talking about, and, even then, it only counts with people already inclined against the candidate, serving to deepen their antipathy, not create it.
I’d say it is, or it’s time to get over our prejudices and make it matter again.