8136215b2e17f3a1bccf13d9e7256f54Hillary Clinton. Donald Trump. The presumptive nominees. One will likely be the President of the United States in January of 2017, about eight months hence. The conventions will be coronations.

Dad? credit: businessinsider.com

credit: businessinsider.com

But Clinton could be indicted! That’s possible, but considering that the entire Democrat establishment is a thinly veiled criminal enterprise, it’s unlikely. Even if Clinton were indicted, she and her supporters—which includes the entire lamestream media—would remind us that she is innocent until proved guilty, and they’re sure the charges will be dropped, she’ll be acquitted, it’s all a vast right wing conspiracy, etc. Does any sentient being really believe, after the lawlessness of Barack Obama and the conditioning of the American people to accept such, that a mere indictment would disqualify a Democrat, particularly a Clinton, who everyone knows to be irredeemably corrupt, from public office? Corruption and lawlessness are practically qualifications for Democrat office holders, circa 2016. No one should hold out hope that Clinton will be forced out.

But Trump could say or do something that would disqualify him. Some skeleton in his closet could be revealed, and that would be it. There is no question there is a double standard with such things, and that the media will extensively, and with righteous indignation, cover every pimple of Trump’s, while ignoring irrefutable video, documentary and e-mail evidence of Hillary’s corruption. Besides, Trump was right when he said he could murder someone in public and it wouldn’t matter a whit to his supporters. Trump university, his many dalliances, his boorishness, vulgarity, general cluelessness, none of that matters. While it is always possible that Trump might decide, for no particular reason understandable by the general public, that he really doesn’t want to be president and withdraw, no one should hold out hope that Trump will be forced out, or voluntarily withdraw.

And don’t hold out hope for a convention miracle. There will be no viable third party candidate, no conservative savior coming out of nowhere to win on a second, third or tenth ballot. Of course it’s possible, in the sense it’s possible I’ll grow magnificent breasts and become a starlet by tomorrow, but I wouldn’t advise anyone to hold their breath waiting. No one else is going to be the 2016 Republican nominee.

With what does this leave us?

Anger—no, rage?

Depression?

Resignation?

The certainty that America is destined for precipitous decline?

The choice of voting for evils barely different in kind and intensity?

Civil war?

It’s easy to think ill of others. It’s very easy to think anyone willing to vote for Donald Trump, anyone that thinks him a great candidate for president, an idiot or worse, but that won’t help those that hoped for a better candidate. It won’t help Trump supporters, and it won’t help America. We all make mistakes. We are all taken in. Thankfully, most people will forgive us for most mistakes. America is all about second chances, and we would do well to allow such to others in this bizarre election year.

We have to think short, medium and long term if we are to have any hope of salvaging the American experiment. We have to do it without rancor, and with clear, inquisitive minds.

The Lesser Evil:

Some now suggest we have to vote for the lesser of two evils. I, more and more, find myself voting for the person I think likely to do the least direct damage to the Constitution. It may sound like the same thing, but the difference is important.

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Many conservatives are claiming they absolutely will not vote for Trump. OK. Clinton wins. Some conservatives are claiming that Democrats have told them they hate Clinton and were planning to vote Republican, but not Trump—never Trump. OK. Clinton wins, and don’t forget, Hillary has promised to give Bill a lot of power over us, and who isn’t anxious for another round of that? Remember: he had multiple chances to have Osama Bin Laden handed to us on a silver platter–before 9-11–and ignored them. We also know, from Benghazi, exactly how well Hillary deals with 3 AM phone calls.

We cannot be sure how Donald Trump will behave as president. His entire life has been not exclusively that of a successful businessman, but certainly a player, a crony capitalist and con man of the highest rank. He has, from time to time, failed, but he has mostly succeeded. His overweening principle is profit; his faith is in himself. Does he understand the importance of the Constitution, and that it is not a living organism but, as Antonin Scalia said, a legal document, understandable by the common man, that says some things and not others? Trump has made some vague noises to that effect, but there is no clear evidence. Has he actually read it? There is no evidence of that either.

Does Donald Trump have any clear, definable foreign policy principles? Again, his vague pronouncements seem to be fundamentally isolationist, and he has proclaimed himself a friend of Israel, and perhaps our other allies, but again, we really don’t know.

This is true of just about any kind of policy essential to the restoration of small government, the rule of law, and individual liberty. Trump has made noises that are, at least, not entirely alarming, but again, his actual principles–beyond aggrandizing and enriching himself–are ephemeral, smoke, mist, the quickly vanishing morning fog.

He has many of the worst traits of Barack Obama. That alone, for any Republican or conservative, should disqualify him, but it will not, not in 2016.

He has been close to, given large sums of money to, the Clintons and a variety of other leftists and leftist causes. He has been, until this presidential campaign, a life-long Democrat, which is hardly a surprise for a life-long New Yorker, a city not known for producing many serious conservatives. He is not only a limousine liberal, but a private jet–a really big private jet–liberal. This too should disqualify him, but it won’t. Not in 2016.

However, in all of this, there is reason for at least a little hopefulness. Donald Trump is a capitalist. He believes, at least, in the theory of economics that defines America and makes possible liberty. He is a successful practitioner and supporter of free enterprise. Without question, he is a player, a manipulator, a man willing to, if not outright break the law, bend it to the breaking point to win, to make profits, to shut out his competitors. To him, everything is a deal, every conflict can be fixed by a superior deal-maker. Eminent domain? Toss widows out on their ear to benefit private enterprise, to benefit himself? You bet. That does not well comport with conservative principles or small government, but we have bigger fish to fry short and medium term.

The potential hope here is that Trump may well appoint truly capable people and listen to them. Virtually any other human being on the planet would be less narcissistic than Obama, more willing to listen to the truly experienced and capable. There is some evidence that Trump, despite his own narcissism, does try to hire the best, and actually takes their advice. This is hopeful.

credit: nationalreviewonline

credit: nationalreviewonline

In short, Trump is a con man, hustler, player, egomaniac, successful businessman, schmoozer and vulgarian. He’s entirely human and does not pretend to be otherwise. We know what he is and his obvious failings. His past power has come from wealth and bending politicians of both parties to his will, convincing them to see things his way, give him what he wants. Such skills can be useful in a President. What we don’t know is what he will do with those attributes or whether it will be consistent.

We know precisely who and what Hillary Clinton is. Liar, criminal, corruptocrat, vindictive, nasty, obscene, and abusive, and none of those terms truly do her justice. We know exactly how she treated those that served Americans in the White House: rudely and with contempt. People die around her with alarming frequency. We know, with no doubt, that nothing is more important to her than money and power. She has held several impressive titles, but her term as Secretary of State was a disaster from which we may never truly recover, and her senate term was undistinguished and unproductive, at best. She will stand aside as Americans die and then lie about it to retain her political viability, just as she did in Benghazi. She studied at the feet of Communists, and still believes in that ideology and its methods. She has promised to destroy any industry she does not appreciate, and would destroy the First Amendment in the name of preventing any criticism of herself or her cronies. She has badly damaged our national security to hide her criminality, lied about it, and will do the same in the future. She is probably the worse blackmail risk in the history of the Republic, and I say probably only because I don’t know about others.

We don’t have to guess about any of her policies. She tells us about them daily, and then lies about them when the truth of her beliefs becomes inconvenient, but we can be sure what her true beliefs are. Her stint at Secretary of State was a disaster, a disaster that still threatens us, and the world. She hates Israel, supports America’s enemies, and believes in every leftist/socialist/progressive/communist delusion one could hope to name. The idea that she is a centrist of any stripe is mental illness personified.

Time: 

For the preservation of the union, for the salvation of America, time is short. Barack Obama has done terrible damage to our economy, to race relations, and to our standing in the world. He has all but obliterated the rule of law, and is not done yet. The Constitution is one Supreme Court Justice away from becoming just another yellowing, historical document on periodic display in DC.

There can be no doubt that another Clinton presidency would be merely an Obama third term. Clinton has already promised to do more, to be even more lawless, regarding executive orders, than Barack Obama. We can be sure she is telling the truth about that. We can be sure she will keep that promise.

Four more years of Obama/Clinton might well make it impossible to pull America out of a cultural and economic death spiral. It could well provoke actual civil war, and a war that would not reunite America, but sunder it for all time. Eight years would dramatically reduce the American standard of living, and induce other horrific effects too numerous to cover here.

Three Definitive Short Term Issues:

There are three issues that deserve immediate attention by anyone concerned about this election and America’s future. Losing these in the short term will make the dissolution of America not only possible, but inevitable.

Second Amendment: This anchor of the Constitution hangs on the vote of a single Supreme Court justice. Replace Antonin Scalia with a progressive justice, one of the “living Constitution” faith, and the Second Amendment will be rendered an individual right without any application in the lives of individual Americans. It will exist on paper only, but confer no benefit, no right to the means of self-defense. The next president, within four years, could replace as many as four Supreme Court justices. Unless each and every one those jurists is determined not to make law from the bench, unless they are determined to uphold the Constitution, the Second Amendment, which is the single right that guarantees and makes possible all other rights, is dead.

Such an unlawful turn of events might not immediately lead to insurrection, but it is the necessary prerequisite. When a progressive administration begins rounding up guns and gun owners that balk at surrendering them–make no mistake, that is their eventual goal, for without that state of affairs, they can never wield absolute power—there will be rebellion. It will begin on the individual, local level, but will quickly involve state governments and inevitably, secession. How could it be otherwise? The choice will be stark: fight for liberty or surrender to tyranny.

Taking guns from the law abiding can have only two purposes and results: to make the citizen into a subject, and to make criminals allies of the government against the honest. The current status of Baltimore provides only a glimmer of that kind of madness and tyranny.

Donald Trump claims to support the Second Amendment, and claims to carry a handgun. If so, he has one of the very few concealed carry licenses in New York City. Whether this supposed devotion will extend to ensuring only justices that honor the constitution will be nominated is, at best, uncertain. Dianne Feinstein had one of the few California concealed carry licenses, but that did not for a second translate into support of the Second Amendment. Trump claims to wish to appoint only constitutionally faithful justices, but thinks his sister, a confirmed leftist judge, a perfect fit for The Court. Contemporary Republican legislators are surely stupid enough to confirm her, and other non-conservatives.

credit: abcnews

credit: abcnews

Hillary Clinton is one of the most vicious and unashamed opponents of the Second Amendment in American history. She is also an ardent supporter of judicial activism. She will do any and everything she can to destroy the Second Amendment and associated liberties. Consider: Supreme Court Justice Bill Clinton. She is running on just that kind of destruction, sworn to work every minute of every day to that end.

First Amendment: The Obama Administration is still laboring to destroy the First Amendment, particularly the religious liberty clause. These freedoms too hang on the vote of a single justice. Forcing nuns to violate their faith, prohibiting criticism of Hillary Clinton and her cronies, allowing corrupt, dictatorial attorney’s general to prosecute corporations and individuals for denying the false and ruinous global warming scam, all are an integral part of progressive desires, and are in process as these words are written. The most sacred speech acknowledged by the First Amendment is political speech, so it is no coincidence it is that Clinton wishes to abolish.

Hampering and ultimately, abolishing the First Amendment is also a necessary prerequisite to tyranny. It goes hand in hand with the destruction of the Second Amendment, and usually hides behind such euphemisms as “campaign finance reform.” If Americans revolt, it will be over usurpations such as this, unlawful proclamations that strike at the heart of liberty.

Here too, we cannot be reasonably certain of Trump. In business–all of his adult life—he has proved himself willing and able to do whatever necessary to achieve his goals. This kind of resolve might serve a President well, but it might also serve to destroy precious liberties, purposely, or through neglect or a lack of understanding. Would Trump place progressives hostile to the First and Second Amendments on the Court? If they were his sister, he would. How then would non-relatives be different? Is there a family exception to a principle necessary to preserve liberty?

Hillary Clinton is the sworn enemy of liberty, and sees the Constitution as do her progressive minions: an annoying impediment to her goals. Like Barack Obama, there is for her no higher power than herself and her ideology. Therefore, religious liberty means nothing and the freedom of speech is a roadblock on the road to utopia.

Obamacare:

This is the first and most important proof of the willingness of the next president to honor the Constitution and to truly work for the good of the American people. If this destructive and totalitarian law is not repealed in 2017, it may never entirely disappear. It may fall under its own weight if not put on life support, but with a progressive Supreme Court to prop it up, will continue to harm individual Americans, and to destroy our faltering economy, for generations.

Donald Trump has promised to repeal Obamacare, but he clearly has other priorities. Failing this, what promise of his can possibly be taken seriously? More than any other issue, this will define a Trump administration–and any Republican congress–and tell all Americans what he intends. As with virtually all else, no one knows what he will do.

There is no such doubt about Clinton. She is sworn not only to keep Obamacare, but to impose a single payer system. With a compliant Supreme Court, that would easily be accomplished via executive orders and the administrative state, fearing no judicial override.

Final Thoughts:

On these three issues alone, we see a clear path. Donald Trump is, in most ways, an unknown quantity. After hearing his interview with Bret Baer this evening, I know no more about his principles than I did before hearing it. His past does not give one much hope, but hope there is. Whether Trump intends it or not, any politician is beholden to those that put him in office. He may choose to ignore them, as Obama has, but the debt is there, though we can’t know to what degree Trump will recognize or act upon it.

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There is no doubt that a vote for Hillary Clinton is a vote for the destruction of America as the Founders intended it. She has sworn it, and these are promises we can be sure she will keep. With her, there is no hope for liberty.

There is our choice: Hillary Clinton, who we know will be terribly destructive to our liberties and safety, and who will fully intend it, or Donald Trump, who may fall short of his promises and rhetorical intentions, but may not intend harm. No hope vs. some hope.

I am no enthusiastic supporter of Donald Trump. I worry about his positions because I have little idea what they are. I worry about Hillary Clinton because I know exactly what hers are. I do not, for a second, think any politician my friend. I don’t imagine they care about me. I do not think them a father figure. I absolutely do not think them a savior.

It’s time to realize that any President is our employee. If they are competent, if they intend good, give them thanks, reward them with another term, but never engage in a cult of personality around a politician, for they are all too often among the least of us. Never believe a politician will be a savior. Never believe a politician can or will care about any one of us. Never allow such unrealistic expectations to inspire division and hatred among us. We are Americans.

For now.

NOTE:  A dear friend and fellow blogger, who I’ve never met, Bookworm, often inspires me with her clarity and perspective.  As a result, I often follow her lead.  That was not, by happenstance, the case with this article, and she has written one that comes to essentially the same conclusions from a different, and very much worthwhile, perspective.  By all means, take the link and read it.

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