Well before Election Day, Nov. 8, 2016 I began to research whom I would vote for to next lead our country. It is common knowledge that for a multitude of reasons, the vast majority of citizens wanted real change in the direction the U.S. has taken, not just over the sitting administration but beginning decades past. I mused that for a multitude of reasons, this was likely the most important election for “passing the presidential baton” during my 82-year lifetime. For this election I realized that I would not be casting a ballot for only who would occupy the Oval Office for the next four years but rather decisions that will be made effecting decades ahead, well past my lifetime. That made me determined to limit any absorption of written or broadcast opinions from any source.
I went on a research binge. The web provides a near unlimited source to separate opinion from fact and also to expose where certain history may even have been re-written to satisfy one view of persons and events vs. another. In most cases, my memory was only reinforced by recorded history.
I have lived under 13presidents, served in the military under two, but qualified to vote for only the last 11, (not counting this 2016 election). Because I would contribute to this most critical selection, I felt it imperative to review the thirteen predecessors. I have included one of many sayings from each and tried to avoid being cynical, (A very difficult “task”)
#32 (1933-1945) Franklin D. Roosevelt (D), “We have nothing to fear but fear itself”.
#33 (1945-1953) Harry S. Truman (D), “The buck stops here”;
#34 (1953-1961) Dwight D. “Ike” Eisenhower (R), “Farming looks mighty easy when your plow is a pencil, and you’re a thousand miles from the corn field”;
#35 (1961- 1963) John F. “Jack” Kennedy (D), “Ask not what your country can do for you — ask what you can do for your country”;
#36 (1963-1969) Lyndon B. Johnson (D), “Doing what’s right isn’t the problem. It is knowing what’s right”;
#37 (1969-1974) Richard M. Nixon (R), “Well, I screwed it up real good. Didn’t I?”; and “I’m no crook”;
#38 (1974-1977) Gerald R. “Jerry” Ford (R), “Real assistance is to help the people to help themselves. We can’t do everything for everybody but there is room for all who try to make it”;
#39 (1977- 1981) James E. “Jimmy” Carter Jr. (D), “The love of liberty is a common blood in our American veins”;
#40 (1981-1989) Ronald W. “Ronnie” Regan (R), “The nine most terrifying words in the English language are: I’m from the government and I’m here to help”;
#41 (1989-1993) George H. W. Bush (R), “Read my lips; no new taxes”;
#42 (1993-2001) William J. “Bill” Clinton (D), “Character is a journey, not a destination.”; and “It depends on what the meaning of ‘is’ is” … “It depends how one defines sex”.
#43 (2001-2009) George W. Bush (R), “Leadership to me means duty, honor, country. It means character, and it means listening from time to time”;
#44 (2009-2017) Barak H. Obama (D), “If the people cannot trust their government to do the job for which it exists – to protect them and to promote their common welfare – all else is lost.”; and “If you like your…, you can keep your…”
While and after researching each one of the above, I pondered about and reaffirmed that they were each only human, not Gods! I thought about both their short falls and achievements as President. None were perfect or meritorious of worship, but each of them earned and deserves respect. My biggest disappointment was to realize that today, few American citizens see beyond a politician’s appearance, charm, smooth orations, and source of character or advertised background.
I have become stunned that so many of my peers cannot list three achievements of their choice; some not even one. Few voters really know of their candidate’s agenda. Many fellow citizens are unable to list for their choice; a right and wrong; an achievement and a failure. Like a dry sponge, they have absorbed everything they are told by a corrupt, self-serving, opinionated, untruthful media. And once they have established that first opinion, neither hell nor high water will revise it. They express no middle ground and are unable to respectfully, both express and hear. The attitude is; “I am right and you are wrong and as display of my righteousness, I will riot and pillage”.
My Decision Process.
I first thought back to 1992 when William Clinton, Ross Perot and George H.W. Bush were in contention for the White House. Even then, I wanted change so I supported and voted for a non-politician, Ross Perot. Like 18.9% of the voting population, my vote may have actually contributed to Clinton’s win and Bush’s loss. I would not “waste” my vote again solely to display that I didn’t prefer either of the major candidates.
I began my decision process by studying H. R. Clinton. It was already my personal opinion that going back even before Bill and Hillary occupied the Governor’s Mansion in Arkansas, they were deep into and surrounded by serious suspicions of corruption. Without pause, more than 40 years of their history have continued to be immersed in questions of corruption and worse. At times reviewing that history reminded me of the crime bosses and syndicates of the “Roaring Twenties” being blended with the episodes of the Godfather series. I won’t debate the parallels but in my mind, I labeled them as the Clinton Family Crime Syndicate. I just could not bring myself to vote for anyone in that extended “family”. Upfront I admit that I first decided to cast my ballot as push-back to that Clinton history.
The other major candidate was Trump. I often heard the words, “But he has never held a public office”. Per the Main Stream Media, (MSM) they promoted and emphasized that as a negative. It got my attention but as refreshing and positive.
The reciprocal counter point was citizens touting; “That is the reasons I will vote for him”.
A majority of politicians and the MSM have yet to realize and then accept that 75%+ of the voting public have become tired and disgusted of the “good-old-boy” bond of the politicians that has drifted away from hearing their constituents and equally a distrust of an ever exposed lying MSM. Once elected, it has become the norm that the politician no longer hears the constituent instead emitting an aura of not giving a damn; that is until the next election. A growing number of citizens were holding their noses to vote for another politician.
I agonized about why put a non-politician behind the most political desk in the world? The result was to carefully research this “non-politician”, Donald Trump. My personal conclusions came from a blend of fact and logic.
Trump’s degreed education is; Bachelor of Science in Economics. To be brief; he went into real estate and although he experienced some rough rides and setbacks, created a multi-billion-dollar empire. I am certain that along the way, he did not become an expert in: operation of heavy equipment; structural steel erection; carpentry; plumbing; HVAC, trade electrician; and so much more. Then how did he succeed in the re-building and/or construction of massive buildings and resorts? With the exception of career politicians, no one can be an expert at everything,(justified sarcasm).
Trump had developed an expertise in a special ability, a personal attribute; Leadership! He has obviously excelled at surrounding himself with true experts and making his decisions based on their advice. Then he further assigned contractors, sub-contractors, superintendents, supervisors, and foreman to lead the working experts to carry out his executive decision. And although to many it was only a T.V. program, retain the ability to “fire” and replace the lesser performers throughout the totem while rewarding those that can achieve the assignments.
The bottom line is that Trump has a personal attribute that far exceeds the talents and personal attributes of many people. This attribute has been totally missing in his predecessor. LEADERSHIP! I concluded that Trump would bring to the Oval Office that one most desperate need that has been missing. Dwight Eisenhower, Teddy Roosevelt, Ulysses S. Grant, and Washington come to mind but they had military backgrounds. Trump may be the first non-military President since Lincoln that has that natural leadership attribute. (But we must not overlook his five years attending a Military Academy from age 13 through High School).
I did not vote for a person that sometime bloviates that he knows it all. I did not vote for a person that has spent his/her entire adult life seeking that powerful chair. No, I didn’t vote for Donald J. Trump.
I cast my ballot for LEADERSHIP! His name just happened to be along for the ride.