Saturday, November 5, 2016

I officially endorse voting for Donald Trump (or Gary Johnson, Jill Stein or Bernie Sanders)

Donald Trump. Gage Skidmore

As you are surely aware, the presidential election begins next Tuesday. I have long wanted to write a post about who I think you should vote for. But in the end I found that writing about policy is pointless. I'm not suddenly going to convince a hard core Democrat that they should vote for Trump when they are die hard pro-choice or pro gun control. It would just be rehashing the same old arguments again and again, and I would be unlikely to convince anyone. 

And I also don't think I am going to reach the people that hate Donald Trump. Though I think the accusations against him are largely unfounded, I do understand that people dislike the man as a person or even disagree with his policies. 

So I have decided to write something a little different. Instead of touting Trump and his policies, I am going to be arguing against voting for Hillary Clinton, even if you like her policies. My goal isn't to convince you that voting for Trump is the right thing to do. But I do think that if you can't support Donald Trump, that you shouldn't automatically support Clinton instead. There are very strong arguments against voting for her and if you personally find Trump and/or his policies distasteful, I would remind you that there are third party campaigns and write ins that you can vote for instead of just voting for Hillary Clinton. Gary Johnson, Jill Stein and Bernie Sanders are all in play as well. 

This will be mostly about the consequences of a hypothetical Hillary Clinton presidency. I will mostly avoid policy, except when her policies are the things that will cause the negative consequences. I'm going to take this point by point. Apologies in advance for the listicle format! 

1. Hillary Clinton's foreign policy will likely lead to war. If you have been reading my campaign coverage at all this year the one thing I keep harping on again and again is that a no-fly zone in Syria is a horrible idea that would likely lead to war. This isn't a left and right issue because many people on the GOP side have argued the same thing. And people to the left of Trump, including Johnson, Stein and Sanders, agree with me. 

Hillary Clinton has a neocon view of Russia. She thinks that they are still an existential threat to America. This is a foolish and outdated idea, which was even mocked by Barack Obama when Mitt Romney brought it up during the debates four years ago. I have found no legitimate reason to strike Russian interests in Syria. The only reason I see is hatred against Russia and fighting a cause that was lost a long time ago.

And I have to say how shocking the turn around on this issue was. Just a few years ago people were bashing everyone for neo-con foreign policy. When Barack Obama wanted to go to war in Syria after they crossed his "red line" there was bipartisan opposition to him, but suddenly when Clinton is running on a much more aggressive foreign policy those on the left, who were united in the opposition to the Iraq War, have fallen in line. 

I also want you to think about the personal consequences you would suffer if we got into a nuclear war with Russia. I have myself and I have little confidence I would survive such a conflict. Though I don't believe the smaller suburb that I live in would be directly targeted in such a war, the larger city I live near would be. Since I work in that city, there's about a 1/3 chance on any given day, at the very least, that I would die in such an attack. I most likely wouldn't be in the "fireball" area, but I would be in the blast zone. If I got lucky, I would be crushed or otherwise killed by the shockwave. But most likely I would die a horrible death due to radiation burns... Maybe I would live long enough to get cancer or die in the ensuing famine and unrest. 

Your chances may be even worse. If you live in a city with a large population then you are essentially doomed if Clinton gets us into a war. And even if you live in a smaller city or town, you could still die in the initial exchange. There are some towns near me that are small and look safe but would be targeted because they produce things of military importance. Indeed, my old college town had a major military factory nearby. If I still lived there, I wouldn't have enough time to scream when the bombs dropped... Most of you won't either and the survivors would get to play Fallout in real life. That's the potential outcome of a Clinton presidency and what you are voting for if you vote Clinton on November 8th. 

2. Hillary Clinton is mired in scandal. She's currently under multiple FBI investigations. The e-mail server is actually the more minor of the investigations. The FBI has basically admitted that they had enough to charge her for putting national security at risk. Somehow, James Comey decided that even though Clinton did things that would normally called criminally negligent, he claimed that there was no intent. The wikileaks scandal shows that there was intent. 

But it's not just the e-mails. It's also the Clinton Foundation. While portrayed as a charity, it's largely a slush fund that the Clinton's have used for pay and play purposes. The investigation into the foundation has been very complex and will likely result in charges or impeachment for Hillary Clinton. And there are rumors, unsubstantiated at this point, that the Clinton's were involved in even worse things. If those rumors end up being true then the situation will quickly spiral out of control... 

With the Antony Wiener sex scandal, the situation has gotten even worse. On his and Huma Abedin's laptop, new e-mails have been discovered and are being reviewed. I have no idea what is on those e-mails but it is very possible that criminal acts will be found.

If Clinton wins there is a very good chance that she will be impeached, just like her husband before her. And in this case I think she would really be removed from office. Such an outcome would be a disaster to the country and would erode trust in government to a massive degree. And if she doesn't get removed then we have to live with the consequences of having a president that is completely above the law... 

3. Trump will have more opposition then a Clinton presidency. The media is completely on Hillary Clinton's side and will only rarely call her out on her issues. While Trump gets accused of murder for just about everything, Clinton largely gets a free pass. She does get some minor flack occasionally, but nothing to compared to what Trump gets. If he gets elected, the press will keep him honest. That won't happen with Hillary Clinton. 

Indeed, the media has proven again and again that they are in the tank for Clinton. Wikileaks has confirmed that as well, with Clinton being fed debate questions by the press and they have even sent stories to her campaign for approval. And they have openly admitted to being biased in favor of Clinton. 

That means that if Clinton does do something obviously illegal or immoral we can't count on the press to call her out on it. Sure, there will be outlets like Breitbart, but they lack the credibility needed to actually check Clinton's power. The mainstream media needs to be a check against presidential power and I just don't see it happening with Hillary Clinton. 

4. Hillary Clinton rigged the primary election in her favor. Though I don't think she will able to do the same thing in the presidential election, it's very clear that she did not play fair with Bernie Sanders. The DNC leaks and Wikileaks releases have shown that she did some terrible things in her effort to defeat Sanders. 

Like I said before, Wikileaks has shown that one of her supporters and new DNC chair Donna Brazile passed on debate questions to her. That gave her an unfair advantage at the debates but it's hardly the only example. There was also clear examples of the DNC and her campaign working together, which is against the rules. 

The Project Veritas videos showed even more collusion between Super PAC's and her campaign. These collisions are illegal and another example of Hillary Clinton not playing by the rules. Time and time again she has shown that she will do some seriously underhanded and wrong things to get ahead.

That kind of behavior should not be rewarded. We need to stand up and say that our elections matter and we won't tolerate any attempts to subvert the will of the people and to play outside of the agreed upon rules. And we should do that by voting for anyone but Hillary Clinton. 

5. Hillary Clinton is in poor health. We all remember the video of Hillary Clinton struggling at the 9/11 event. She was diagnosed with pneumonia and seems to have recovered but there have been many other questions about her health. She often looks haggard and rough during her campaign stops and I think that she is too unhealthy to serve. 

I also think that Clinton may have a substance abuse problem. She seems to drink quite a bit and several e-mails leaked by Wikileaks mention her assistants trying to sober up. While Gary Johnson has his own substance abuse problems, with him smoking pot quite a bit. Trump and presumably Jill Stein and Bernie Sanders don't have that problem. Trump never drinks so with him we don't have to worry about him making bad decisions three sheets to the wind. 

I can't prove those allegations, but even a minor drinking problem could exacerbate her bad health. And remember, she's trying to get the most stressful and harmful job in the world. Just look at how badly Bill Clinton, George Bush 43 and Barack Obama have aged in the 8 years they have been president. 

I can't imagine that someone who already seems to be in poor health will make it through a full four years. Trump's actually older then Clinton, but he seems to be in much better health. I worry about his health as well, but it seems he has a better chance of living a full four years and maybe even the eight years. Clinton has almost no chance. 

And that means Tim Kaine will be president. Go ahead, tell me everything you know about Tim Kaine. The only exposure most of us have had with him is the VP debate. He hasn't been vetted on the national level. At all. Who knows what he will do when he is president? He needs to be vetted but it won't happen at this point. 

So to recap: If you vote for Hillary Clinton, you are voting for the whole package. Even if you like some of her policies you are getting some very bad things along with her. She's a sick woman, who likes to drink, and she has cheated to get where she is. The media will not reliably call her out for her sins since they are deeply in favor of her and are helping her cheat into the presidency. She's also under several FBI investigations and will likely lead the country into a constitutional crisis. And, to top it all off, her foreign policy could directly lead to a nuclear war with Russia, which could threaten to kill us all. 

I think there is a clear choice this year. You should not support Hillary Clinton. The stakes are way too high. That doesn't mean you have to vote for Trump. You can always go for Johnson, Stein or even write in Bernie Sanders. I understand you might not be excited for a Trump presidency. But do you really want to go with Russia? Are the policies Clinton supports so important to you that you would give up your life and the lives of everyone you care about? And do you really want the government to fall when Clinton gets arrested? 

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