By Baba Grumpy
My interest in American Politics dates back to the George Bush Snr. Vs. Michael Dukakis election. I was instinctively in support of the Democrats what with Apartheid and the stance Ronald Reagan and his American administration had taken on that issue.
Courtesy of my knowledgeable Uncle, I had taken a very keen interest in global politics in my pre teen years. My Uncle watched all sorts of documentaries and read all sorts of books about historical events especially the World Wars and political developments around the World. As I spent a lot of time with him, I watched a lot of these documentaries and heard his views on how historical political events fulfilled bible prophecies.
As I grew into my teenage years, I became a junkie for international magazines like Time and Newsweek. Travelling all the way to CMS in Lagos Island to purchase latest copies of those magazines or even to Oshodi to buy older copies at a reduced price.
Unfortunately, I was disappointed with the result of the 1988 election. That election made me realize how not too dissimilar American politics was to Nigeria’s or indeed anywhere else in the world. Regional considerations, religion, money and skullduggery all played a part.
I licked my wounds and was delighted when Bill Clinton clinched it in 1992. Eight years later, my misery returned when Al Gore pig headedly lost the election because he was trying to be whiter than white and shunned Bill Clinton.
Fast forward to the Democrat’s Primaries preceding the 2008 elections. I expected Hilary to be the flag bearer but she unfortunately lost to a combination of Barack Obama’s skin color and charm and Senator Ted Kennedy’s support for Obama.
I felt back then that the significance of having a female president was more than that of having the first (half) black president. I suspect I was alone amongst my friends who were carried away with the novelty of seeing this well-groomed black man become the President of America. Unfortunately the euphoria has now died. Eight years of his presidency has achieved nothing significant. He has made good speeches, he has looked the part, he has, to be fair to him, restored some pride to the way America conducted itself especially in the wake of the Abu Ghraib torture and prisoner abuse scandal. But he has achieved nothing significant as a President bar Obamacare. A program very much threatened by the President elect.
Obama’s inexperience on the global stage and his lack of experience for the White House was evident many of the foreign policy stance his administration took. Two examples suffice: encouraging the Arab Spring and supporting the inept Cameron in his desire to topple Gadhafi. Both of these have made the world a much more dangerous place. Just look at the number of people dying in the Mediterranean because of the collapse of the Libyan and Syrian states.
Of course, human instinct is to accept golden opportunities, but presiding over America is not like winning the lottery. It carries more responsibility and any reasonable politician ought to decline to run if they realize that their experience is not particularly appropriate for the role.
Obama was never ready to become President in 2008 and this is evident in the fact that the “Yes We Can” chant has turned to ‘Yes They Gridlocked Us’. Yes Obama won the Democrat’s primary free and square but his administration has brought out the worst in American society. It appears the coalition that brought Obama into power has been turned asunder, the hitherto open minded White Americans who voted Obama have rebelled and turned their back on tolerance. The black people who were chuffed to see their kind on the ballot eight years ago, decided to stay at home this time. Also the Cuban Hispanics apparently voted en mass in opposition to Obama’s re – approachment with Cuba, which has been likened to unilateral disarmament.
As far as I am concerned, those who brought us here are many. The Two most guilty groups are all those who decided that the 3rd party candidate should get their vote and the almost 50% of the electorate who decided to stay at home. They conspired to hand the election to the unlikeliest of candidate in today’s world. A man who appears to have broken all the taboos associated with election campaigns in the United States.
Hilary and her campaign organization were unfortunately complicit too. Many in the last few days have highlighted Michael Moore’s assertions a few days to the election that the Republican candidate could win. But way back in early August, Mr. Moore had warned Hilary and her supporters not to take the double digit poll lead for granted but to amongst other things make huge efforts to ‘Get The Vote Out’. Sadly this wasn’t the case. Yes she is winning and it appears she will win the popular vote by a huge margin but the election had a rule that ensuring huge turnout by an energized base could have helped win. The Republican man did this. Regrettably Hilary’s camp didn’t.
In addition huge voter turnout failure, I don’t think there was a concerted message from Hilary to the base that was energized by her opponent. It appears that base was given up too easily. I think that was a high-risk strategy and contributed to the loss. Many are free to talk about how divisive Hilary is and how she was a stained candidate by the emails, war mongering, closeness to financial services firm etc. I buy in to none of these narratives. She has a long history of service to her fatherland and look into the history of anybody with a decent service record and you will find many unpalatable things. She was good enough to run the whole diplomatic and foreign bureaucracy for American but not pure enough to run the country. ABSOLUTE GARBAGE. What is particularly galling for me is that her opponent is twice as guilty of all the things she has been accused off and a lot more.
So here we are. America has a new president designate, the Free World has a new Leader designate, the Non Free World has a new enemy designate. Where is that meteor when you need one? I don’t lay claim to any power of prophecy but I don’t see it ending well at all. I fear the Tramp will consign all of us to the rubbish heap.
I would love to turn off from America’s affairs forever, pretend it’s none of my business but it is. When he follows through on his NATO threats, Europe gets it in the neck. When he allows his mate Bibi Netanhanyu all the latitude to pursue his Middle East policies, Europe gets it twice in the neck. If he picks a fight with China, I am of the opinion that they will react in kind and the whole world gets it in the neck.
I pray I am over reacting but unfortunately I think not. I think the stay at home American voters, the black racist American voters, white racist American voters, the American Media, Barrack Obama & Hilary Clinton have all conspired to hand over America to someone who should never have been allowed to come close to the presidency.
I hope I am wrong but something tells me I am not.
Baba Grumpy works in Financial Services in the United Kingdom. He blogs mostly about football at http://babagrumpy.blogspot.