Featuring essays by Elizabeth George on the future of our country


A Second Term

I had the opportunity to listen to Paul Begala being interviewed on the Campaign HQ a few days ago, and I was struck particularly by one of pieces of advice he gave. He suggested that, since we all kw people who voted for Donald Trump in 2016, our objective should be to encourage them to vote for Biden in November, not by revealing to them all of Trump's past misbehavior, his tendency to engage in outright casuistry, his "tax cut" which gave billionaires a big payday, his handling of COVID-19, and on and on. Begala pointed out that people already know this. He also pointed out that knowing the worst about him in 2016 did nothing to stop people from voting for him. Begala's suggestion was this: All people need to become informed about his plans for a second term.

One plan we can assume exists (I've looked on his website where there is no indication of what he intends, by the way) is the continuation of his efforts to destroy Obamacare. If past action is any indication of future action, then it's probably a safe bet that anything Obama was even tangentially involved with will be dismantled, rendered powerless, or decimated entirely.

Aside aside from Trump's chipping away at the public's having access to affordable health care, we can also assume that more environmental protections will be ended, more species will be threatened, the level of toxins in the water and pollutants in the air will be increased, and the safety features that exist in workplaces will be removed. Indeed, already the safety features that were ordered on all oil platforms after Deep Water Horizon have been removed, putting in danger the workers on those platforms who might well have voted for Trump in 2016.

We can assume, also, that Trump will continue to use "acting" as a way to put at the head of various agencies and offices big GOP donors, past cronies, and current sycophants. Using the term "acting" ambassador or "acting" head of this or that has allowed individuals to take up positions of influence without being vetted by Congress. Hence, at the moment, we have as Postmaster General, a Trump donor who is rapidly dismantling the US Postal Service.

We can assume, also, that the GOP Senators and Representatives will continue to fall in line behind him, giving him the freedom to do as he pleases without reprimand or consequences.

We can predict the resignation of more Inspectors General so that there will be little to no oversight about how our money is being spent. We can also predict that these positions will not be filled or, if they are filled, they will be filled either by Trump sycophants or by people with no background in the job.

What we can't assume is that the country will come together to wrestle COVID-19 to the mat, that Mexico will decide to pay for Donald Trump's wall, that "good clean coal" will be mined, that racists will cease to be emboldened, or the any form of gun control will be adopted.

So setting aside Donald Trump's rebarbative personality, we need to address what will happen from 2020-2024 if Trump is re-elected. And if you just had the thought "He'll never be re-elected," you might want to relive in memory the night he was elected in the first place.

Elizabeth George


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