Betting Against Trump

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trump

I am not a betting kind of person. The first time I bet on something was so that I could reverse-jinx, a one-rupee rosogolla againt India winning against England in the World Cup 83 semi-finals. When I lost the bet, I refused to pay up. Years later, this time because I was actually confident I would win, I bet a coffee on Hillary Clinton with a colleague, confident that I would get a free Starbucks coffee.

This time, being older, I could not cry and get out of my commitment. So I bought the coffee.

Because all through these months, I was absolutely sure that Hillary Rodham Clinton was going to win. Absolutely sure. Blame Nate Silver. Blame the different polls. Blame my faith in data delivered from a pulpit of authority. Most importantly, I had based my belief, and I acknowledge I was wrong, that the cosmic order would give Clinton the presidency, that somehow, to quote Paulo Coelho, when you want something the whole universe conspires to give you it, and boy has Ms. Clinton wanted this. My middle-class upbringing tells me that the studious girl always gets A, the one who has prepared for the test, again and again and again, for the past forty years, and not the  hungover bully, smelling of shots and lipstick, who staggers into the exam hall, and scribbles something on his sheet.

And then this happens.

Miley Cyrus is twerking with tears. There are protests everywhere. Racist bullying spikes all over the country. A host on liberal talk radio spends ten minutes conjuring Nazi imagery, before helpfully adding ‘not that I am implying Trump is Hitler and gas chambers will spring up’ (too late sir, too late sir). Stephen Colbert is shellshocked. Trump is not my president. I am ashamed to be American. From op-eds in the major newspapers to Trevor Noah on Comedy Central, the message is the same—the US is at the core a country of racists and misogynists, though I fail to catch the part when it went from the place that elected Obama to this, the underarm of Darth Vader, maybe because no one quite tells me.

I have to react too, because everyone else is. As a brown immigrant US permanent resident, standing at the doorstep of a possible future where supposedly “The Man In the High Castle” is no longer alternate history, but reality, who will be dragged out any time now to be put deported, despite my very legal green card, this is perhaps my last chance to speak.

Oh my dear liberals, of my dear Democrats. If you cared so much about me, about your beloved country becoming the Third Reich, perhaps, well perhaps, you should not have put Hillary Rodham Clinton on the ticket. When your must-win states passes right through the rust belt, historically the portion of your country most ravaged by globalization and the flight of manufacturing jobs to other places, surely, you do not put on the ballot a person who is the anthropomorphism of that very political culture, of free-trade and no import tariffs and of NAFTA, the candidate of Wall Street and high-paid corporate gigs and the ultimate Washington insider, so much an insider that she has actually already been inside the White House. You do not put her on the ticket, when the opponent can legitimately claim not to have been part of the establishment that was responsible for the flight of jobs overseas, neither Democrat nor Republican, and whose principal political message is “I will get those jobs back, I will rip up the treaties, and I will launch a trade war on the countries that took your jobs” (it’s another thing if he will ever do all this, but between him and Clinton, he is the more likely to even try).

And if you do, well, this is what happens.

The numbers are in, dear Democrats, and your own people, did not vote for her. Here is the data. The same people who voted for a Black American did not vote for a White Woman, and if there is one thing I have learned in my years in this country, is that no single group as mistrusted in the country than the black American male. So apparently, the same people who were enlightened enough to vote for a black American male with a Muslim middle-name turned racist bigot misogynist in four years when it came to Hillary, who, lest you forget, ran on promising a third term of Obama’s policies.

Whose fault do you think was that?

Oh I get it. It was the racists. It was the basket of deplorables. It was the homophobes and the rape culture-enablers and the mansplainers and the culture appropriators and the women who would not support women.. See there you see is your problem. While you argue, and rightly so, that the activities of a few Muslims should not make all Muslims terrorists, you forget that very same principle when you generalize the traits of a few Trump supporters to taint all Trump-supporters, denying them their individuality, and the genuineness of own respective circumstances. You, kale-eater and Whole Foods shopper, may think, from the point of view of your “privilege” (it’s a word that cuts both ways, you see) that “pussy grabbing” disqualifies Trump from being a President, but there are others, who surprise of surprises, prioritize the promise of getting their job back over the personal failings of their candidate. There are women, the overwhelming majority of white women as the numbers show, who do not feel that Hillary, the entitled and privileged woman she is,  represents their own personal struggles, that her breaking the glass ceiling is just her breaking the glass ceiling and nothing else. Feel free to say they deserve a special place in hell for not supporting a fellow woman, as Madeline Albright had said. Feel free to be creative but remember they get one vote each. Just like you.

So pile on. Call them what you want, use the word “misogynist” or “mansplainer” or whatever-is-the-pejorative-of-the-day as per Slate and Jezebel to tar and feather. But remember this. If someone who wears a costume during Halloween you do not approve of becomes a “racist”, and a supervilliain in an XMen film holding the neck of a female XMen becomes misogyny, what happens is that when the real misogynist and homophobe comes along, like Trump, your labels have lost their edge. Now all it does is it makes people shrug their shoulders and say “Oh well who cares, they say that about everybody nowadays, the PC police”. Worse, being named and shamed drives people underground, makes them reluctant to say what they feel, declaring they are voting Hillary and then voting Trump. Which means you have bad data to go on, and decisions based on bad data…well…we see now what happens.

So keep at it. Refuse to accept him as your President, just like the President refuses to accept climate change. Because, the truth, as you know, bends to your will. Blame the FBI director, as if that was the reason that Hillary lost her own Democratic vote. Keep discussing, on TV, the changing demographics of the US, that makes white voters increasingly redundant. Of course, that won’t lead to a backlash from white voters, and of course, no political operative, would be smart enough to play on that. Keep on foisting uninspiring candidates, on the wrong side of history, on the American public, and try to shame them into voting for that person. Keep doing so.

And it’s not Trump that would have brought the apocalypse.

It’s you.

And I can bet on that.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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35 thoughts on “Betting Against Trump

  1. Not sure of the point of this article. You too bet on the wrong candidate so why are you pontificating against the Democrats now? Thought you might have some insights but it’s your same old tired tirade against feminists and PC enforcers.

  2. I don’t know what I am missing in the whole immigration fear mongering that is going on. He has said he will go after illegals, why do you worry? Don’t Indians feel exasperated with illegal Bangladeshi immigrants? Trump has been vilified instead of being criticized by the brainless propagandists like cnn and msnbc and that was just free publicity for him! And you rightly called out the hypocrisy of the left in shaming all Trump supporters visa-vis Islamic terrorism.

    • This is a sensible comment. Thank you. Trump’s winning hurting lots of ppl because they believe they are smart and well-informed. That is a quintessential cognitive dissonance.

  3. Excellent article. In addition to all the valid points that you have made, I can add
    one other: Hillary Clinton simply did not come across as an authentic person to the electorate. Her carefully scripted responses, her (very sparse) interviews, her speeches, her gestures at rallies, practically everything about her bespoke of a person who had tailored every response and reaction based on feedback from analysts and advisors. Such a candidate was a wrong choice at a time when the mood in the US was against establishment, business as usual, conventional politics. One has simply to look at the Republican primaries to see that all the Rubios and the Bushes were swept aside by a significantly more spontaneous candidate who did not seem to care about being politically correct all the time. Sure, Trump is much less qualified than all the people he beat on his road to the presidency, but charisma does count for something in an election, which is, after all, a popularity contest. Hillary Clinton has as much charisma as a teapot, and this was a major weakness for her (in my opinion) when it came to people casting their vote in the polls.

  4. I saw on your twitter feed that you believed Huma Abedin was bad for India. I have heard this claim from many sources, but haven’t been able to locate anything concrete. Do you have a link providing concrete info suggesting this?

  5. Oldies like me might remember Howard Dean lost his kingdom for the sin of one “scream” that was hard to notice even on replaying the video. Between then and now, someone jacked up the volume control +150dB at least. Anyway, GB, you don’t really need to react. Nouriel Roubini has some serious arguments why watching Trump will get boring mighty quickly and then it will be (almost) business as usual.

  6. You credit Paulo Coelho, with “when you want something the whole universe conspires to give you it” but forgot SRK “Kehte hain agar kisi cheez ko dil se chaho … to puri kainaat usse tumse milane ki koshish mein lag jaati hai”

  7. All Hillary did was give global gyaan. She represented all what was already happening and offered no change. As idiotic as the solutions may be, Trump was raising questions/ issues which resonated with Americans. For good or for worst, Trump represented a change. He was going to win. Anyways, if Pappu becomes prime minister of India one day, it won’t pinch as much now.

  8. How could you bet on Hillary. I had strongly argued for Trump winning with most of my friends long time back. Hillary lost working class votes and those crucial rust belts twice before to Barrack and to Bernie. She was never considered serious by those blue collar guys black or white. She was even more favourite when she was against Barrack and she clearly could not energise campaign or get the working class behind her. Bernie and Trump sensed that very very well.

  9. People vote more guided by emotion than analysis. That was principally what trump was able to play on. No wonder histrionics by politicians get so many votes across the globe, something we often ascribe to illiteracy in India. Our last elections, Brexit vote and now this all point to a similar trend of rabble rousing paying high dividends.

  10. I think the race was lost when Obama started “bullying” Trump – as if a builder and TV host is too petty a profession and civic administration is great. If I am a builder and I hear words like that, then I find Obamacare – its not hard to make up mind.

  11. If the voters were so against the Establishment and the status quo, why would they vote to KEEP two branches of the Govt? They voted to keep the Congress & the Supreme Court the way they were.

  12. All this only tells me politics plays out in similar fashion across the globe- even if your are the so-called global superpower! Because, simply put, human nature at its core, their concerns and needs are pretty similar, whoever we are! Guess its time people stopped taking moral high ground for things happening in other countries, and behave in a condescending manner- we are cut of the same cloth, all of us!

  13. Success has many fathers, and failure has many critics. Perhaps a tad too many. In the aftermath of the fresh burning smell of a stinging defeat, it is perhaps natural to blame the dawn of Trumpocalypse on the many well-documented flaws of Hillary Clinton, but blaming the political correctness of liberals is a bridge too far. Liberals may be too PC at times, but they didn’t bring this calamity on America, and by extension, on the world. People of america themselves did. This country is not what we starry-eyed immigrants believed it to be. That is a hard truth to swallow. For me, it feels like my whole world view is shattered. But if you think about it carefully, it doesn’t seem surprising. The signs were there all along.

    Yes, Obama won twice but does that prove that america is largely free of racism. I don’t think so. Perhaps a small majority of america is not racist and that is enough for a black man to potentially win. Obama won twice, but if you look at the popular vote, he never won big. More than 45% of people voted against Obama both in 2008 and 2012. If a man like Obama, so inspirational, so eloquent, so obviously caring, statesman, unifier, full of charisma, family man; if he can not get more than 55% of the votes in a country where his opponent party was responsible for ravaging the country with unnecessary wars, unbounded corruption, greatest recession since 1930s then one has to think that there is something wrong with the core of this country.

    Trump came to his political prominence with the racist birther movement. He claimed Obama was not even a citizen of the country and arrogantly even demanded to see his Harvard transcripts implying that Obama got through Harvard only by virtue of being black. Think about it. Let that sink in. The president-elect of the United States of America is a man who led the movement to de-legitimatize the sitting president of the United States because he was black. The citizens of this country voted for this man knowing fully well this ugly truth about him. The citizens of this country voted for a man who openly bragged about grabbing women by their vagina and there are 12 women who claim he did exactly that. The citizen of this country voted for a man who insulted the family of a fallen soldier. Any of those single faults and many more should be disqualifying but they were not.

    No matter what Hillary’s faults are, they are peccadilloes when compared to monumental character flaws of Trump. If a large population of a country can look past a man who has proved himself to be a racist, a misogynist, a xenophobe for the laughable claim that he will tear up trade deals, bring your job back from China and Mexico then I am sorry to say that the people of that country are complicit in his racist, misogynistic, xenophobic agenda. Blaming anybody else, other than the voters who voted for him is just defending the indefensible. People of this country have committed a grave sin, and history will judge them harshly.

    • You might find Obama to be eloquent, caring.etc. etc. There are many ppl who find him guilty of many things..anyways…he is a gone president…so I dont know to waste my time on him.

      It’s a little arrogant to think that half the country is disillusioned. You might find asking for a birth certificate racist, I don’t. And I havent see a single thing Trump said which is racist. Please prove me wrong.

      Also, when you say ppl of this country have committed a grave sin…man..I so pity your pompous hallucination.

      • America had a civil war over race so don’t tell me half the country can’t be racist. The whole white south was segregating black people as late as 1960s. Trump just appointed a racist as Attorney General so wake up and smell the roses.

      • America fought a bloody civil war over race so don’t tell me half the country can’t be racist. The white southern america was segregating blacks as late as 1960s and had to be forced by federal government to mend their ways so don’t tell me half the country can’t be racist. Trump just appointed a man as head of justice department who was thought to be too racist in 1980s to be considered for a federal judge position. Wake up and smell the roses in Trumpland.

  14. or what do you think Trump would do which will be racist…can someone tell me this for an uninitiated person like me???otherwise, you are just spreading venom.

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