WARNING: This is a very, very long and a way TMI post about US politics, serving mostly as a therapeutic discussion between me and my inner political demons. Believe me you, your safest and smartest bet it to just scroll right on by…
So here’s my conundrum…
While I never voted for Dubya, a claim I am very happy and proud and relieved to be able to make — and one which I’ll boldly make whenever the opportunity allows, a la this post — it was at the end of his disastrous presidency that I vowed I would never allow myself to cast a future vote for a member of a political dynastic family.
And that vow of the time of course included and was primarily directed toward Jeb and Hillary… then later, as we got closer to the end of President O’s tenure and the talk of a successor to his movement began to bubble, Michelle.
Of course Jeb’s genetic political ineptness removed him, thankfully, from the discussion…
But as for Hillary and Michelle, it’s not that I don’t think that either have the portfolio of experience and intellect to be president… it’s far from that: I think they would both be formidable presidents.
It’s just that as one who drank the “American Dream and Ideals” Kool-Aid long ago, I am inherently opposed to dynastic privilege and nepotism whatsoever and however slight, and regardless the political sex appeal the family member/heir to the political throne may have.
However… little did I know at the time I made this vow that the Republican Party (a party my own political solution would probably round to if I ever were to do the hard math of me [ Strong National Security(Unbeatable, Agile Military + Highly Sophisticated Intelligence Community) + Aggressive Foreign Policy + Pro Business and Free Trade Policies / Moderate to Liberal Social Policies + Strong Environmental Protection Policies = Kurt (or someone who closely resembles Barack Obama) ]) would morph into Dr. Frankenreagan’s Monster.
The only Republican candidate I would even remotely consider voting for would be Kasich, not because I agree with him — not even sure where he stands on things — but from what I’ve seen of him, he seems like a pretty normal politician; plus, I kind of remember him as a pretty good budget guy as a congressman back in the Nineties – what a great decade that was.
But, it doesn’t matter – Kasich doesn’t have even the remotest chance of winning the Republican nomination and he’s probably staying in the race now just to be someone’s (Trump’s) pick for Treasury Secretary.
So come November, that leaves me only with a vote for the Democratic nominee.
Well, you could vote for a third-party candidate, I hear you saying.
To which I reply – Hell no!
During the 2000 presidential race, because I already knew there was no way I could vote for Dubya, and because Al Gore seemed like such a stale replica of a wannabe political Everyman, I threw my vote away on Ralph Nader.
Had I known how close and dirty the vote would be, and how truly bad Dubya would be as president, I would have had no problem plugging my nose and voting for Gore. To this day, I still regret that third-party vote.
So, like I said, my vote is stuck with a Democrat, like it or not.
And it appears it is going to be… or not.
I have been following Bernie Sanders since he was a congressman — it was easy to do since he has always stood out with his outspoken attitude and exceedingly liberal ways.
If it were not for Trump, I would never even consider voting for Bernie.
To be honest, if it does come down to The Bern and The Donald… I’m not sure what I’ll do.
Which leaves me left with the political, dynastic dynamo of Hillary.
As far as my vow goes… as long as Trump is in the picture, that vow, without a second thought, is expeditiously cast out the window.
However, I am having a very difficult time fully supporting her…
For, you see, she has a lot of weighty baggage holding her down — most of which I could overlook, especially in critical times such as these.
And while I can overlook most of her weighty issues, she does have that one issue that I’m not sure I will be able to overlook.
And it’s the issue of the way she (mis-)managed her emails while Secretary of State.
Now, you’re probably thinking: Personal email servers? Come on, Kurt, forget about it… It’s Donald Trump we’re talking about!
To which I reply: Yes, I understand; however, there is something you probably don’t know about me that needs to be considered when considering this issue of Hillary’s email server problem.
And that is, not only was I in the military for twenty years, I was also a member of the Intelligence Community (oxymoron, I know…) in some capacity (military/DOD contractor) for nearly thirty years.
So the mismanagement of classified information is a pretty big deal for me, as it is for others of my military/IC ilk.
Now, based upon history, I’m sure this email server issue of Hillary’s won’t land her in jail (as it probably would someone of my lowly ilk); nor will it even derail her campaign.
But, when looking deeper into this, I find that this security issue of Hillary’s, when taking her politically dynastic family into consideration — is not just an isolated incident.
While president, Bill Clinton lorded over two serious security incidents similar to Hillary’s: Sandy Berger, his National Security Advisor, was caught removing (and by “removing” I mean stuffing them illegally into his briefcase) classified documents from the National Archives, and John Deutsch, his CIA Director, was caught with classified information on unclassified computers in his home.
Of course, as it always is with the political elite, and as it will be with Hillary, it was brushed under the rug and nothing serious happened to either Berger or Deutsch as a result.
But, it is this pattern of bad, security-related behavior of the Clinton’s and of those whom they reign over, that really concerns me.
And with this, my friends, we reach my conundrum…
As I mentioned earlier, I am proud Kool-Aid drinker of the Grand Ideals of America (while understanding that, while close, America has a way to go before reaching the complete grandeur of these ideals)…
And, to me, one of the basic tenets of this Grand Ideal is that all are treated equally under the law.
And it really pisses me off when the political elite can easily get away with breaking laws that would put us non-political elites smartly in jail.
I get livid when thinking that General Petraeus, the Iraqi War Whisperer and disgraced CIA Director – remember him: sharing classified information with his biographer/lover – has been allowed to retire with all four of his general stars, while respectably earning a very hefty salary teaching at elite universities.
So, yeah, considering all that is at stake right now — the soul of my country; my self-sense of integrity and well-being…
Hillary is a very big and dangerous conundrum for me.