Tuesday, September 06, 2016
I have encountered a couple of pieces outlining, from slightly
different angles, why the worst possible outcome in this election is a
Trump victory. Some months ago, Jonathan Hoenig of Capitalist
the case (HT: Steve D.) from the perspective of the
... Donald Trump's business credentials are exactly what makes him so dangerous. In the minds of voters, Trump represents capitalism. But as was pointed out in this space five years ago, Donald Trump is explicitly anti-capitalist on issues ranging from taxes to anti-trust to trade.And then, in a piece aimed squarely at the GOP, home of many who favor limited government, there is a Reason Magazine piece by Steve Chapman, which includes the following:
Because he is in business, Trump's progressive taxes, threats to CEOs and tariffs against consumers will be legitimized as capitalist, as moral, as just. They're not.
And when Trump's policies fail, as they will, American capitalism will unquestionably get blamed.
This is why I'm supporting Clinton: Long term, the damage levied by Donald Trump to capitalism in America will be immeasurably worse than that wrought by Hillary Clinton. [emphasis and links in original]
[The Republicans] are in the position of a bride who, on the eve of her wedding day, knows she's making a mistake. If she backs out, she'll bring a mess down on her head. But if she doesn't, she'll be caught in a snare that will be painful and hard to escape, with consequences she will have years to regret.Chapman goes on to speculate about all sorts of other things Trump might try, like dumping Melania and dating. Such speculation would be incredible, and thus either easily dismissed as rude or satirical for practically any other candidate, but not for this one. And it underscores what the Republicans have set up for themselves -- and our country -- by backing him.
The first harm from Trump is that he would be the new identity of the party. Forget the legacy of Ronald Reagan. Never mind what Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan propose. He would be the one defining the national agenda. If President Trump wanted to intern Muslims, launch drones against Mexico or put David Duke up in the Lincoln Bedroom, his fellow Republicans would wear the stain.
One of the miseries they have suffered in recent months is waking up each day anxiously wondering what new folly their candidate is about to commit. It's bad enough having to put up with his insulting of a gold star mother, not knowing that Russia has invaded Ukraine, accusing Barack Obama of founding the Islamic State, and retweeting white supremacists.
But all this amounts to an ignorant egomaniac running his mouth. In the White House, Trump would be acting, not just talking. He would possess powers that can be wielded in all sorts of destructive ways. As Republicans have learned from Obama's use of executive authority, it's hard to stop a determined president from doing whatever he damn well pleases.
Both pieces deserve full reads, and emphasize that the Republicans should get the pain over with sooner, rather than let things fester for four years and suffer far more, and for longer, later. Hoenig helps put the pain of Clinton presidency into perspective, and Chapman reminds us that the sky is the limit for Trump's unpredictable foolishness.