A foreigner’s thoughts on the 2016 Presidential Election Season

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I, as a foreigner, can only weigh in so much on who your country chooses to be the next president of the United States.  As a Mexican, I can say that both candidates are a threat to the sovereignty of my country:  Trump by scapegoating Mexico every chance he gets, and Hillary for secretly pushing for the privatization of Mexico’s oil industry (as was revealed by leaks).  But, we must admit that the office of president of the United States is a global one, given the superpower status of your country, and the fact that your country has so much influence in world events.  Therefore, people from all over the world have an opinion, and the following is my own.

I don’t think anybody could have predicted that Donald Trump would make history by being the first orange clown-man with a titanic ego to take the Republican nomination, or for Hillary, the first candidate under FBI investigation, to grasp the Democratic nomination.  Nobody could have predicted that also Bernie Sanders, a European-style Social Democrat that looks like he just escaped a retirement home, to grasp the hopes and admiration of millions of youth across the country. This campaign season has undoubtedly been entertaining, but thanks to the fact that this is reality and not a T.V. Sitcom, it’s also terrifying.  What we have now is a campaign between a proto-facist, Trump, and an imperialist, Hillary.

Don’t think I use those words loosely.  Trump is not a fan of free speech and has always been trigger-happy to sue those who, as Hillary said in a speech, “get under his very thin skin.”  He wants to change the libel laws to sue journalist who cross his little line.  He bans certain outlets, like the Washington Post and Univision, from covering him in his events.  He wants to go after civilians in war, and make the U.S. into a police state, by instituting further domestic spying, to protect it against terrorism.  Which would be fine, if you don’t mind police states. He centers his proposals and speeches on ardent nationalism, and asked his supporters to pledge that they will vote for him by raising their hand, which they quickly did in a way that is too reminicent of the Hitler salute.

As for Hillary, she really is “crooked,” like Donald says.  She awards favors and concessions to those who donate to the Clinton foundation.  She wont release the transcripts to her speeches to Wall Street.  She created her own server in her home to keep secrets from the government.  And, like I mentioned earlier, she is also an imperialist.  She supported the Iraq War.  She violates the sovereignty of Latin America by secretly pushing for petroleum privatization in Mexico and backing an illegal coup in Honduras.  She pushed for U.S. military intervention in Libya, which “coincidentally” wanted to get off the dollar and use the gold standard for their currency value,  which is now a disaster zone.

Basically, it boils down to this: both candidates attack each other, and their attacks are true, but the image they create of themselves is false.  Trump is not a master mind in business, as his multiple bankruptcies attest, and Hillary is not the liberal lioness she wants Bernie supporters to think she is.  Both her and Trump are (cliche warning) birds of a feather, two sides of the same coin, and they flip flop so much no sandals can rival them.

The choices that you as a voter have are similar to choosing between Pepsi or Coke.  Both will cause took decay, but they have a certain following and debatably, their own unique tastes.  It’s not the fruit smoothie that most adults (when it comes to political maturity) in the political arena were pushing for (Bernie Sanders or Jill Stein), but it’s what the people voted for.

Of course, there are many third party alternatives.  I know many of us want them to be more nationally relevant, however, keep in mind that if you allow the voices of one third party organization, then the voices of others, which may be extreme in a way that you don’t agree with, can also come to the fray. For example, you might be in favor of the Tree Huggers United Party (I made up the name just now), but then you also have to tolerate the Racist Solidarity Party (also made up).  The point is, if you want a system similar to those parliaments in Europe that have a spectrum of parties, you may indeed hear your views may be represented by one of them, but that party’s voice might be drowned out by by the screams of other parties that have extreme views in the other direction of the political spectrum.  If that is tolerable to you, or to the country in general, which likes to fancy itself a democracy, then by all means go full-Europe.

Americans, this is your country.  I don’t know what you’re going to do and I have no recommendations for you.  Will you vote for the lesser of the two great evils?  Or will you vote third party?  It’s up to you.

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Carlos

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