I commented on this post a while back, it was about a week after the Brexit vote.
Here’s what I said :
“As a British immigrant to the US I paid very close attention to people lumping Trump together with the success of Brexit. I pegged the outcome of Brexit 100% wrong, I thought the UK would never vote to leave the EU. I was wrong.
I’ve read all the opinions about how the UK and US demographics are not conducive to such a comparison between Brexit’s success and Trump’s, but thats not really the point for me: I got it massively wrong and it was a big shock. Could I also be wrong in thinking Clinton is a shoe in ?
I keep reminding my friends that there is so much money riding on that ol’ gal and that the prospect of a female president is so irresistible to some that there is no way she’d lose. I felt fairly secure in my protest vote for Bernie come November. Just like I felt secure in my protest vote for Rocky Anderson back in 2012.
But things are changing and for me at least Brexit was a clear bell toll. Racists, bigots and ignorant morons are a substantial voting bloc on both sides of the Atlantic. Will I vote for Clinton, well, lets just say its a pretty good possibility given the recently illuminated possible alternative.”
This is pretty much still where I stand, currently witnessing the Republican National Convention and even after also seeing Hillary Clinton skate on any possible charges over her “extreme carelessness” involving intelligence handling which pretty neatly illustrates American tiered justice.
Why ? why am I thinking about voting for somebody like Clinton verses voting my conscience ? which if truth be told should be Bernie. Because I see it as a vote of my conscience to vote for Hillary rather than somebody who I know will lose.
Like I said above, I think HIllary will win, especially with her friends at Google and so much pent up estrogen at the ballot box, but is that a comfortable margin I want to test with a protest vote ?
The choice in 2016 is pretty clear, however much I joke about it, flipping my 1oz copper round with a donkey on one side and an elephant on the other.
The issues I care about are ones Clinton has actually mentioned, heck, that’s enough, my standards are pretty low these days.
Meanwhile, over in Trump land, the EPA is gone, benzylated water is the norm in energy producing areas, riots are common in the southwest near the swelling detention camps at the border and at airports where lots of brown people of all descriptions are daily experiencing human rights violations and being told they’re helping to “Make America White Again”.
A shift may have occurred in my thinking. I’m not a very optimistic guy and I think the country is headed for some very strange places, I decided this before I even realized Donald Trump regularly ran in national elections. Climate change is going to bake us to death, exacerbating many other problems over the next 4-5 decades.
To varying degrees the Democrats are the only ones who take this threat semi-seriously, ergo, I’m pretty blue for that reason alone. (Plenty of “RINOS” do too, but lets not look at the hedge and miss the forest.)
My argument stems from this important point: regardless of the futility of “corporate liberals” attempting to halt climate change, lets not make things 100% worse for ourselves by possibly enabling the election of a man who thinks Climate Change is a Chinese conspiracy and will do next to nothing to make America’s carbon foot print even moderately lighter.
Aside from Trump’s non-reality position on things like science we can’t ignore that those 4-5 decades of already stressful and tumultuous change would be made many orders worse because of divisive bullshit based on already hot button issues of race, immigration and lgbt rights. Not to mention possible infringements of free speech, freedom of the press and (more) war crimes. This is where Trump would take us in a hurry, he would be one more pile of shit on top of an already challenging world of shit.
Is Hillary Clinton not a lying Washington insider with questionable morals and finely tuned skills of manipulation ? Yes, she is, is she not more hawkish than Obama and doesn’t mind world policing ? Yes. But she’s not fucking crazy.
This is what I think about when I hear the phrase “vote your conscience”.
How could I explain to a child 15yrs from now why the country has a white nationalist party and that liberals are told to sit down and shut up, at gun point (a paraphrased quote from a Trump supporting co-worker).
How could I explain to that child I wanted my conscience to be pure? so I voted for a guy who I know in my heart should have been president, but had no chance of standing in the way of Trump because of a rigged election, and I felt that was unfair.
“The delegate system and the selection process were unfair honey, and Clinton was a liar, I had to do what was right for me, even if it meant the possible end to civilized America ….”
“We don’t have national parks any more because I couldn’t let go of Bernie ….”
Don’t doubt me when I say this, protest votes are a luxury we abuse at our peril in 2016.