CHANGE. BIGLY.

Some of us really were looking and listening. Although all the liberal publications were saying Hillary Clinton would win big, I was hearing other voices. Michael Moore, to name one with whom you might be familiar, was saying the opposite. So were other important analysts — all issuing warnings that it was not going to be so easy. There were many things that could go wrong. Not only had the fat lady not sung, the concert hadn’t even begun and the orchestra was just tuning their instruments. Too early to pop the corks.

Even when we say “What could possibly go wrong?” which means we really do know that things always go wrong, regardless of whatever plans you made, it’s rare that absolutely everything goes wrong at the same time.

72-stay-in-the-car-ga-10142016_020

That is what happened for Hillary Clinton’s campaign. Who’s fault was it? Hers, certainly. The FBI? Absolutely. The Democratic and Republican establishments’ unwillingness hear the angry voices in coal country and the rust belt. The people who neither Democrats or Republicans have been able to help for the past 30 years have felt abandoned. They have a point, but there’s a huge question whether or not there’s much to be done. No one can turn back the clock to the glory days of American manufacturing because that was substantially based on a postwar Europe in smoking ruins who, of necessity, bought their “stuff” from us.

You aren’t going to bring back the coal industry. Oh, maybe a little will be revived, but those miners need to learn new skills, like the fishermen of New England who have lost their livelihood as fisheries closed due to persistent, relentless, over-fishing.

We have voted badly before and clearly, we can do it again. We have yet to plumb the true depths to which w can sink.

We have voted badly before and can do it again. We have yet to plumb the true depths to which we can sink.

Change happens and sometimes, no one is to blame. The world keep turning. Crying and shaking ones fists at the sky while howling “Stop the world! I want to get off!” is futile and pathetic.

A very big change happened yesterday. How much we will we personally, as individuals, be affected? It depends on too many different variables to make an educated guess much less a prediction. In any case, big changes to law and legislation don’t happen overnight.

The remnant of Bernat Mills. A reminder of how things can change.

The remnant of Bernat Mills. A reminder of how things can change.

Many voters who got Trump into office are going to have a bad case of buyer’s remorse when, in the not-too-distant future they realize there won’t be a wall. The mines aren’t coming back. America’s manufacturing base is not coming back any more than the empty mills in the Blackstone Valley will ever again transform cotton and wool into cloth. Sometimes, when it’s over, it’s over.

Moreover, they will discover that as much as the man supposedly makes the office, the office of the president will remake Trump.

This isn’t a toy job. By the time President Trump realizes what he’s gotten into, he won’t be the same guy. Reality has harder edges than TV reality shows.

The presidency changes those who take office. Always. Which way it will go this time, we can’t know. I’m pretty sure the candidate doesn’t know either. It’s going to take time to sort it out. Determine who the power players will be. Who will populate the Trump cabinet. And who will be on the Supreme Court.

Meanwhile, back in the deep blue Commonwealth of Massachusetts, we didn’t vote for Trump. We did legalize marijuana and vote to protect farm animals from cruel treatment. Yay us.

50 thoughts on “CHANGE. BIGLY.

      • Those anti-Trump college demos leave me wondering how many actually voiced their minds at the voting booth. The sound and fury is suspect. I covered too many during my working days where they preferred a few minutes of high drama to actual participation in our system.
        Time for sober minds to get on with work on fixing what’s broken in our country. Yes, it’s easier said than done. But that’s the way things work in real life.

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        • In Santa Barbara, a town which voted strongly for Hillary, high school students walked out and grouped at the Court House or at UCSB for mid-day rallies (incurring unexcused absence penalties) — perhaps this is the way underaged students can express their thoughts most effectively. And overnight last night one of the major freeways was shut down by roaming bands of young people (though probably college aged) virtually all night — as they were removed from the freeway in one area, they would move to another! I remember after 9/11 there was a mantra in our company (perhaps everywhere?) that we needed to “get back to the work of the country” — somehow this feels much the same.

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          • The time for protests was before the election. Now? They will accomplish nothing except to annoy people on both sides of the political spectrum. It’s like the post-Brexit storm of regret. Maybe, just maybe, the time for thinking about the repercussions of something to be decided is before the decision is made? Just saying. Garry refers to these “events” as “dial-a-demos.” That’s what he called them when he was working, too. He said you would see the same people show up for all the demos. They were on someone’s contact list for sight holders and you could count on them. They actually had no convictions. They just objected to everything. Not the people you want as your allies in a real fight, but great for swelling the numbers for the TV cameras.

            Liked by 1 person

  1. It sounds good as rhetoric when someone says ‘we will build a wall” and everyone cheers. Or, “we will stop Isis” and the walls tremble from the excitement. He is a stemwinder, and he wound out a hell of a lot of stems. “We will make America great again.” Notice that last word.
    What no one got, apparently, that for all his great repetitive rhetoric, he now will be forced to deal with a Congress and a Supreme Court and aides and glad handers and ambassadors and advisors, and he will, for all his bombast, suddenly at some point realize that he is no longer the CEO of a company, he is the President of a country, and that means he works for US.

    I have this wonderful vision of President Trump outside on a cold vicious January day, taking the oath of office, and his hat blows off, and his hair suddenly becomes his bangs…and his beard…

    Liked by 3 people

    • And make no mistake, he owes debts, most significantly to the NRA. The gun people were huge contributors everywhere.

      He is a Republican in name only and he doesn’t have a lot of pals on the the Hill.

      The presidency changes people. They go into it one young and frisky … and in a matter of weeks, they look ten years older and have forgotten or blatantly reneged on all their campaign promises. The skills you need to GET elected are not the skills you need to govern. It’s a whole different game with completely different rules. So, the jury is out.

      Meanwhile, I’m glad they legalized pot. Because, as the Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers used to say, “Pot will get you through times of no money better than money will get you through times of no pot.” Or, in this case, times of evil ministers.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I think Mr. Trump’s going to be in for a surprise when he sees what the job he just signed up for actually entails. Then again, what do I know? I laughed when he threw his hat into the ring a year ago. One of my Aussie followers told me then he was going to be the next US President. Who’da thunk that was prescient….

    One of the reasons I don’t get involved in politics is that my views are a mishmash of ideals from both sides. America has consistently, especially in my lifetime, changed out the party in power every decade or so… and I happen to think that’s healthy. I wouldn’t want either party to have control for so long that they could ramrod their agenda on to the public. Too much change too fast is just as scary to me as wanting to hold on to the past for far too long…

    I haven’t been a fan of any of our Chief Executives this century, who were each lauded by and demonized by the different sides of the political spectrum. But we ALL survived 8 years of Bush, we ALL survived 8 years of Obama, and I think we’ll ALL somehow make it through a Trump Administration…

    P.S. I think as of tomorrow I’m going back to talking 0% politics. Even after just a few days I’ve already had enough of the exercise…

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    • You are right in that every 8 to 12 years, we do seem to change parties and generally, that’s probably fair enough. Keeps the system alive. This time, though, we didn’t change parties exactly because Trump isn’t a Republican. He is what he is, whatever that means. I doubt ANY president-elect knows what he has gotten into until after his first briefing as president. It must be pretty overwhelming because they all age visibly in the first few weeks in office. It’s a job I NEVER wanted. I suspect no matter what you do, at least half the population will hate you anyway. Hating is one of those things people seem to do very well. No studying required. We’re born knowing how to hate.

      I am glad the election is over. I am sorry Trump is president. I’m hoping he’ll turn out to be better than I fear or at least, no worse. I am tremendously grateful my blue state legalized recreational marijuana. I suspect that’s how many people will make it through the next four years.

      Don’t bogart that joint, my friend.

      Liked by 2 people

    • You’re welcome. I’m just trying to achieve some personal perspective. I don’t want to be Chicken Little, running around yelling ‘The Sky is Falling!’ Unless, of course, the sky actually IS falling. In which case, I would seek shelter. Running around, flapping ones wings while shouting rarely improves any situation.

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  3. We haven’t seen the real Trump yet as a leader of anything other than the campaign — and that’s a far cry from leading the country. The world has changed dramatically in the last 20 or 30 years. Domestically, we can’t go back to pre-technological activities, attitudes, or jobs, or health care, etc. — perhaps this is the time we need to accept that. I am more concerned about the international issues — our presence in the world is one of the things that truly makes us great, and that takes far more finesse.

    Liked by 2 people

    • We actually don’t know what he really believes. We’ve seen “the candidate,” but we haven’t heard anything like a plan or any kind, domestic or foreign. Last night’s little speech was obviously written to sound properly presidential, but does it mean anything? I have no clue. I have no idea what he believes — or if he believe anything. And you’re right. All those angry blue collar families are howling at the moon. The factories are not reopening. The mines are not reopening. Coal mining isn’t a viable industry and isn’t going to be. For good or ill, that ship has sailed and isn’t coming back.

      So few people want to hear the truth. The truth is unpleasant … so they elect people who tell them what they want to hear and will promise them anything in exchange for their vote. Of course they still won’t get what they want. You can’t have what’s unavailable and impossible.

      I think Trump is a horrible mistake, but I would love to be proved wrong. Since we’re stuck with him, I have to hope that he’s not as bad as I think he is.

      Liked by 4 people

  4. I have two beautiful daughters and want the best for them. I want them to have a great career that challenges them, education that informs them and makes them grow, a future bright and filled with much more than merely accomplishment. I want my girls to experience love, and hurt, and joy, and pain. I want them to know that life is filled with struggles but that they can get through them and come out better. More importantly I want them to be mindful of the value of life and that their life is not as important as any others. I want them to know that truth is being completely honest even when its difficult. I want them to know courage is doing what is right when the whole country says it is wrong.
    Did I vote for a women who advocates killing the innocent but in the same sentence wants to take away the right to own guns because toddlers might be killed. Did I vote for someone who allowed soldiers to be slaughtered standing idly by allowing their families to suffer? Did I vote for a person being investigated for willfully sharing protected documents? Never, but neither did I vote for Trump.
    There was a third candidate that as a country we chose to ignore as a whole. However I voted for him since he aligned with what I believe. All the sadness over a person who chooses to murder the innocent I will never understand. When it comes down to it, I’m glad Trump, the big Buffoon, won over such a fickle minded, liar.

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    • I don’t agree, but I think you will soon see for yourself that Trump’s promises are exactly like every other politician’s promises. Gone like smoke in the breeze as soon as the election is over. There will be no wall. The jobs that are gone will stay gone. The mines won’t reopen. Because some stuff can’t be fixed. There are historical reasons for these events and you can’t roll back time to when you liked it better.

      Was Hillary Clinton imperfect? Of course. Is Trump telling the truth? Of course not. You don’t think so either. You’d have to be pretty dumb as well as incredibly naive to believe that this billionaire is really on your side.

      I get wanting to blow up the system, but it would have been a better idea to put someone into office who had some genuine idea of how to fix it. It’s easy to knock everything down. It’s a lot harder to build it back up.

      For good or ill, Trump we’ve got at least for the next four years. I don’t think any of us will like it much but I’m open to being pleasantly surprised. Realistically, most of the stuff that goes on in DC has little direct effect on my life. I’m too old for war and short of removing social security and medicare, what I have I will keep for what’s left of my life. I feel badly for all those people who feel so disenfranchised by The System, but the being furious with The System won’t make the problems less intractable. We are never going to get back those jobs we lost. We are NOT going to be the manufacturing giant of the world. People who used to work in mines and factories and on fishing boats are going to have to find other ways to earn their living and not because I say so but because reality bites. You can argue with me all you want, but it won’t change anything.

      I didn’t close the factories or the mines. I wish we had third party candidates who I felt were smart enough to get out of their own way, much less fix the country’s ills. But Bill Weld was OUR governor and nice guy that he is, he totally screwed the economy and Gary Johnson is, not to put too fine a point on it, a stoner. I have nothing against stoners on principle, but i’m not sure I want want heading my government.

      As for Jill Stein … seriously? A woman who isn’t sure about vaccines? Let’s bring back smallpox. That would lessen the clutter in the big cities. Nothing like a good old fashioned plague to level the playing field.

      You don’t fix complex problems with slogans. If only we could, life would be so much easier.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Great Marilyn, I couldn’t agree with you more. The golden age of the 80’s and 90’s is gone, and isn’t coming back, not in our lifetime. Things do change and constantly wishing things would go back isn’t going to make it happen. I’ve enjoyed your posts along the way. I have been looking out for them. I like the way you think about this. Thank you.

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    • Thanks very much, Leanne. I have always sensed you as someone who understands.

      Age confers perspective. It also doesn’t hurt to know a little history. I survived Nixon and Bush and Vietnam and a couple of wars while living in Israel. However bad it seems, everything passes. Maybe someday, it won’t pass and it’ll all blow up. But I think it’ll be more like the T.S. Eliot poem …

      “This is the way the world ends
      This is the way the world ends
      This is the way the world ends
      Not with a bang, but a whimper.”

      And finally — I have a heart condition. A real one. Pacemaker, replaced valve, the whole nine-yards. If I let myself get crazy over stuff i can’t change, I’ll die. Not figuratively. Really die. I may not live a lot longer anyhow, but I’d like to give it a shot … and that requires me remembering to not get so caught up with whatever is swirling around “out there” that it puts me in mortal danger. Having heart problems is a real game changer and mood leveler 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Totally agree Marilyn- and also thought of the schmucks out there who think he really cared about their closed mines, and that he was really going bring them back jobs…. so naive. Watching this Presidency unfold will be interesting- as you said, he cannot run his own show- he has to answer to others. We are living in a reality TV world, and now it’s being filmed in the White House

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Humans are terrible at accurately recalling the past, and even worse at forecasting the future. I distinctly recall the rhetoric around Obama’s election of socialism, dictator like abuses of power and the likes, yet eight years later there’s nothing to weigh against the reality. If people spent half the time focusing on the good they themselves can do, and not the “what if” catastrophic BS that never comes to fruition …

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  8. Yay you indeed! You voted right in Mass. Still I agree with what you say. Americans need to respect the outcome and allow Trump to lead. Hope that President Trump becomes a better man than nominee Trump. But be extra vigilant and rail if he moves to stifle or suppress the freedoms and rights in America and around the world. Let him be a leader but not a fascist dictator; the latter does not belong in a democracy.

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    • I will do my best. But individuals don’t have a lot of power. The only way we have power is when we form a movement and work together. Which is very difficult to implement at my age. It’s never easy at any age, but harder when you can’t walk fast 🙂 My only weapon is words … and this blog.

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  9. You have deftly written everything I have been saying. You can not turn back the clock, what’s gone is gone and not coming back. If we do not change, redefine ourselves, globalize we are doomed to fail and devolve into a 3rd world country. I am angry and horrified that these naive people with their heads stuck in the sand want to drag the rest of us down with them. If the middle east decides to switch to another currency other than US$ tomorrow that’s it.
    Usually, I idealistically vote green, but what has the green party done at all in the last 20 years other than posture and preen? And the libertarian party? Sounds good until wave away the smoke and see its true face.
    Peope hate Hillary so vehemently and have from day one and I don’t get it, honestly. She is imperfect as you say, but then who isn’t. She is strong and intelligent and can handle what the job and life throws at her. Her corruption and so-called transgressions are not unlike the men in her same position. To call her a baby killer is a bit much, that is a moral and ethical stance that I don’t want to argue only to say that religious, moral and ethical decisions are personal – keep religion out of politics.
    What really is naive is to blame one person for all that one believes is wrong with the country and the government. It is almost as if they do not know how our system works. The Execitive in Chief seems to have become Fall Guy In Chief.
    I, like you, hope beyond hope that Trump will morph into something else and do the job with some modicum of competence.

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    • You have said it eloquently. At the bottom of this are a lot of ignorant, angry people who believe in magic. They believe slogans are the same as plans. They don’t know any history and don’t see themselves as part of it.

      Shit happens. Sometimes, it happens to you. You know this. I know this. But millions and millions of Americans — and apparently a lot of people in other countries too — don’t get it. They want the world to be just like the place where and when they grew up. Or maybe where their grandparents grew up in and they only heard about, but it sounds great.

      I’m grateful I’m old, no longer working, and live in a blue state. It’s not much, but it’s the best I can come up with at the moment.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Marilyn, and all your commenters, it helped reading this today. I’m afraid I had gotten all the way out of the car and was running down the road after the …. I don’t know what. But now, I feel more grounded, back in the car, windows cracked just a bit for fresh air…so I can think for a while before launching into anything. (Like yesterday, I was deciding which OTHER country to move to.)
    What also helped was that my best friend sent me this from her Yoga teacher.
    http://tricycle.org/trikedaily/5-teachings-tough-times/
    So thanks and here we go.
    Ever been to Disneyland? Did you experience “Mr.Toad’s Wild Ride”?

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    • Not Disneyland, but twice to Disney World and I don’t actually remember every ride. There were so many and we got stuck for a long time in the MGM movie area. I did Tower of Terror a lot … and determined it is better done BEFORE lunch. Immediately after lunch doesn’t go with the slimy fried onions on the burger.

      Hang on in there. It’s two days after the election and the world is still here. Take a breath. Ahh. Okay. One more, just because …

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  11. I asked about that Disneyland ride because for more than 30 years of attending high risk childbirths (as a psychotherapist/Doula combo) I would always say that to the father (if present). Get ready for Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride! It usually brought a laugh while at the same time preparing Dad (somewhat)for the event he was about to participate in!! As a dear (younger) friend pointed out yesterday, “we’ve got our work cut out for us in the next four years of this ride.”
    Glad I live in Washington state, probably for similar reasons to your appreciation of Massachusetts…which reminds me…I heard a terrific and hysterical story on NPR the other day. Here’s the link if you need some comic relief!
    https://www.thisamericanlife.org/radio-archives/episode/528/the-radio-drama-episode?act=2#play (about 37.49 minutes in. Ten minutes of laughter!!)

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