Thursday 23 November 2017

Trump sweeps in as President of the Divided States - Hillary is merely collateral damage

Donald Trump greets the crowd ahead of his acceptance speech at the New York Hilton Midtown. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Donald Trump greets the crowd ahead of his acceptance speech at the New York Hilton Midtown. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Kevin Doyle

Kevin Doyle

America is crippled. It is divided and disrupted. Confused and crushed. But that's nothing new. The once-great United States has apparently been in this paralysis for some time.

Or at least that's how people felt as they cast their ballot.

Hillary Clinton is flanked by husband Bill and running mate Tim Kaine as she addresses supporters. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
Hillary Clinton is flanked by husband Bill and running mate Tim Kaine as she addresses supporters. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

The only difference is that they have now decided to drag the rest of the world down with them.

Donald Trump's election message is that the economy is wrecked, poverty is climbing, the healthcare system is a shambles, public schools are failing, immigrants are taking over and corruption is rife in politics.

Anybody who claimed otherwise or tried to use logic and facts were "wrong".

At 4am yesterday in Times Square, white men in their 20s were shouting about how they had reclaimed their constitution.

Clinton supporters react to the results. Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images
Clinton supporters react to the results. Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Next up, they'd get down to the business of cleaning up Washington.

Some were aggressive towards the media, who now represent the dirty side of freedom.

By the time they woke up from their hangovers yesterday, Vladimir Putin had issued a statement expressing a hope that himself and President-elect Trump can work together and end the "state of crisis" in Russian-American relations.

Chinese state media was reporting that Donald Trump is what happens when you give people the right to vote, in contrast to the stability of their authoritarian rule.

But that doesn't matter - because nothing seems to matter to at least half of all Americans any more.

Infringing on an independent judiciary doesn't matter, neither does creating racial tensions or engaging in old-fashioned misogyny.

Trump has threatened to revive the practice of torture and deport immigrants en masse.

He said he would prosecute and imprison Hillary Clinton despite the FBI's repeated acceptance that she has done nothing illegal.

He previously claimed to have seen a picture Ted Cruz's father having breakfast with Lee Harvey Oswald.

And presumably Mexico's government is today budgeting for the wall.

Much of that may have been election bluster and words. And, of course, words don't matter now either.

Donald Trump has single-handedly bullied his way to 1,600 Pennsylvania Avenue with lies and conjecture - but how he got there is irrelevant too.

In her delayed concession speech, Hillary Clinton said Americans "owe him an open mind and a chance to lead".

Republican Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, who struggled to even say Trump's name during the campaign, now believes the billionaire "heard a voice nobody else heard".

Even outgoing President Barack Obama, whose legacy it seems doesn't matter anymore, is now "rooting for his success".

Yesterday, Mr Trump got the most sensitive briefing possible from US intelligence agents who are monitoring the situations in Iraq, North Korea, Syria and Russia.

A man who had to have his Twitter contributions limited is now in charge of the big, red button.

He once said: "I love to have enemies. I fight my enemies. I like beating my enemies to the ground."

That's certainly what he did to Clinton. Her rally in Manhattan on Tuesday night was oversubscribed by thousands.

Millennials, Latinos, Hispanics, whites, blacks, men, women, young and old all found their place in the winding queue that was punctuated with security checks.

A big screen was erected in a parking lot outside the Javits Convention Centre, where a party atmosphere was obvious from early evening.

Mayor of New York Bill de Blasio entertained the audience, telling them they had come to witness history.

And Khizr Khan, the father of a late Muslim American war hero and a central player in the Clinton narrative, said it would be "a night of celebrating the goodness of this country".

But as polling stations closed and the TV networks crunched the numbers, the mood changed. Confidence turned to fear.

Katy Perry arrived onto the stage to plead with the voters in areas where polling was still open to get out and rescue the situation. Her own parents voted for Trump.

A short distance away in the Hilton Midtown, a very different party was developing. Expectation mounted, drinks followed and an audience of mainly white men started to believe that a man described as unfit for office was about to be fast-tracked straight to commander-in-chief.

Clinton was little more than collateral damage. Having long believed that her place was at the podium rather than beside it, her legacy is tarnished, her charity discredited and her speaking circuit work is, for now at least, ruined.

Much has been made of the idea that any other candidate would have beaten the reality TV star - but that is not the case.

Trump was effectively running against Barack Obama as well. Obama said it would be a "personal insult - an insult to my legacy" if the Republican was elected.

This week, a Gallup poll put Obama's approval rating at 56pc. That's ahead of Ronald Regan's standing in 1988 and just behind Bill Clinton's in 2000.

The incumbent is actually more popular now than he was when he was re-elected four years ago. And yet none of that mattered.

She had Jon Bon Jovi, Bruce Springsteen, Lady Gaga, Beyonce and any amount of celebrity power behind her, but it wasn't enough.

On the bright side, we no longer have to worry about climate change. Global warming is actually a fiction that was "created by and for the Chinese".

Neither should we be concerned about equality for the LGBT community or the political crap about breaking glass ceilings. It's "check-out time" for women at 35 anyway.

Over the past few days in New York, I've heard people compare Trump with Hitler.

His initial speech as President-elect suggests he won't be quite as terrifying as his campaign has suggested.

But more worrying is that I've also heard people say he needs to be more like Hitler when dealing with immigrants.

That's the plight of this nation.

The world has watched in disbelief as Trump rose to the top, creating the 'Divided States of America' in the process.

The system was never rigged, but America was broken. Now it's shattered.

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