How fitting as this is the 4th installment of my observations into American politics circa 2016 and the state of affairs surrounding the race for the White House.
The 4 Horsemen of the Apocalypse, in biblical terms, refers to: Death. Famine. War. Conquest. Or as the rest of us call it, the American experience!
That’s not fair, in entirety but, it most surely is a large part of the story and history that makes America, Murica!
So, who may you ask, are the 4 horsemen then?
First up, and you knew this was coming, Donald J Trump.
He’s first simply as a function of date and current events. Trump is the natural progression and outcome of decades of misguided and hateful, racist, sexist, bigoted, dismissive, and any other negative adjective you care to list, political operation and operative that has made America it’s own worst enemy.
To listen to political commentary, and yes, particularly to right wing conservative commentary, you would swear that the civil war was still being fought, hand to hand today!
As America moves slowly into the 21st century, it has stopped to fondly reminisce about the good old days: the 20th century and in particular, the 1950's.
Bill Maher had an interesting final thought on his show a few weeks back where he said that basically, Trump was 50's guy and that is how he sees the world and want’s to go back to the ‘good old days’.
I found it amusing and went about my business. The more I thought about that though, the greater it’s significance and meaning came to light.
‘The Good Old Days?’ Who were they good for? Ah yes, white males!
The days when you could walk down any street and say nigger, or faggot or any other racist, bigoted, sexist statement you wanted to with no repercussions. Without a single thought as to who you were saying it too or what harm it did. What did it matter? As a white male you were king of the castle and no one could say otherwise: the peasants and ‘pee-ons’ were second class citizens, if citizens at all: even going as low as being only 3/5ths a man!
Political correctness isn’t the attempt to stop you from using any language you want. It’s the exercise of the entire populous to be inclusive and to eventually make such awful language no longer common place or acceptable in the modern society at large.
I can’t speak for you but I sure as hell don’t want to go back the 50's!
The Second Horseman:
No! Not George Bush! Bill Clinton!
Yes Bill Clinton, everyone’s favorite good old boy. A charmer to be sure but one of the horsemen without a doubt.
How is he a horseman? His sin, not understanding that his enemies were actually enemies.
Always trying to negotiate with the other side, always thinking there was a deal to be had. All for not!
The right wing of America had long a go given up on the foundations and ideals of it’s platform and founders. This was a contest to wrestle power out of the hands of others, regardless of consequences. You can always put those around the necks of the losers.
Bill Clinton never stood up to those assholes when and as hard as he should have. He tried to bargain his way around governing in an arena that did not respect his power or place.
You may respect his demeanor or approach to governing but in the day, it cost him and America dearly. When you recognize the other sides decayed values and tactics and know what their goals are, attack and tear down at will. He missed his opportunity and further buried himself in the cheeks of an intern.
3rd of 4. This one is hard, maybe the hardest as it could be any number of people. I chose this man:
What a piece of work this guy is. Those eyes though, kind of hypnotic, aren’t they? Like staring into the abyss.
I picked Mr Rove for a reason. And it is in ‘resaon’ that I find him so disgusting.
Understand what Mr Rove is: he is by all measure, a brilliant tactician. His strategies and employed tactics have won races all over the map from tiny nothing local state races right up to the White House.
It is in those strategies and tactics that you find out just how disgusting a man he is.
I can list several ethically questionable things done to and said about democrats and lefties but I think his worst came against one of his own, Sen John McCain.
Karl Rove was the master, is the master, of the ‘whisper campaign’. During the primary fight in 2000 against George Bush, Karl Rove let lose his operatives in South Carolina, suggesting that Sen McCain had fathered a black child and was a ‘crazy traitor’.
This of course goes way beyond just what was said and speaks more to the state of the populous in SC and their social values, or lack there of. Either way, Karl Rove played to the darker side of Americans and Bush went on from there to win the White House.
I respect Sen McCain and even think he would have made a good if not great president. I’m a left leaning independent and I like the Senator. How he was treated was plain and simple, disgusting. Karl Rove and even Pres Bush should be ashamed. But this shows you just what people will do and what little to no regard for the truth or decency is payed in modern politics, on either side.
And riding up the rear, horseman number4: Saint Regan
But he made us feel good about ourselves, he made us feel proud to be American again. Yes he did and objectively, that is all he did.
Look at the numbers. His impact on the middle class, their standard of living and the wealth gap that we lament about today and is the basis for the entire ‘Trump’ movement today, resides with the actions taken during his presidency.
Funny though, if he were alive today, he couldn’t even join the republican party, he’d be Gary Johnson at best.
I can go on about trickle down economics all day but that is not his sin: or it is, but there is an even better choice for why he is on this list.
After winning the republican nomination in 1980, who of you knows what the first stop and speech was for then private citizen and of course, radio show host, Ronald Regan?
If any of you answered Philadelphia Mississippi, you get a gold star. Bonus if you know why Philadelphia Mississippi is/was famous, sort of? The answer for our younger readers is in a Gene Hackman film called Mississippi Burning
Philadelphia Mississippi is where Michael Schermer, James Chaney and Andrew Goodman were murdered. The 3 civil rights leaders that made national and then international news were murdered there by officials and law enforcement in 1964.
This little town is a sort of epee-center for white supremacy and hate groups. So what does Saint Regan do? He goes there to court the racist vote and set in motion the 40+ year journey of racist republican rule and stigma that is on full display today in the Trump campaign.
He’s no saint! It would be one thing to court that vote for pure numbers crunching, and I think he did that, but it’s something entirely different when your one of them: and I think he was.
Regan was a product of his time. A time when African Americans were niggers plain and simple: when women got you coffee and served it too you on their knees: when being gay was either traitorous or a mental illness.
Maybe I’m expecting too much from men like him, maybe I will be the same and not outgrow the decades of my formative years, the 80's and 90's. I certainly hope not and we all should be smart enough to learn from past mistakes, by others and our own.
The world moves on, I hope. That all depends on us being smarter and learning to adapt to the new world around us and the one coming. There is nothing to fear about it or the people there, really, they’re not much different from us!
Perhaps these should be the 4 ‘horse-people’ of the future?