Hillary and the Broken Status Quo

While there is a debate amongst pollsters over the incredible spread between polls (with some reliable pollsters who had very good track records in 2012 and in previous cycles showing a tight race), let’s assume that the average of the polls is right, and Hillary is likely the next president. What will that mean?

Douthat at the NYT makes an interesting argument. How do you call out the elite consensus - of which Hillary has been a part for decades now - when it might just be wrong? For example, the Iraq War was not the result of a cabal of neo-cons who still have a delusional faith in nation building in one of the world's most divided and unstable regions. It was a much broader coalition of progressives, liberals, and mainstream conservatives. Of which Trump himself was a brief supporter, even if he - like many at the time - had his doubts.

If Hillary wins, with the support of the most overtly partisan media (keeping Trump out of the White House has become a call to civic duty) in modern times, who will call out the consensus? Trump is losing the election on character issues, not on policy issues. As much as progressives disagree with his policies on immigration and elites disagree with his policies on trade (and immigration), this race would be a toss up if Trump's egotistical tweets and his past transgressions were not an issue.

Who will call her out? Perhaps if she wins, the press will - having done their duty dissing Trump - turn on Hillary with a ferocious and hypocritical self-righteousness. How can you have done those things with your server and your pay to play schemes that we ignored during the campaign? We helped you win! How dare you Hillary! We sent you our questions and articles for editing and corrections, and now we discover this??

Think of Germany's Angela Merkel - of whom Hillary is apparently a big fan - and her iron will that left Greece in ruins to save German banks, and opened the door to enormous numbers of refugees from Syria and elsewhere. Now Germany has a potential terrorism problem, perhaps on the scale of France. Can one imagine Merkel apologizing for opening up Germany's borders? Imagine Hillary striding towards Angela Merkel - both resplendent in shining pant suits. Their firm handshake and bracing hug a meme for the steely status quo these uberfrauen represent. Except it's a cracked and stressed status quo.

Of course Hillary is welcomed by the European elites - she's of them and Bill's philandering would have never reaped the condemnation it suffered had he been a European politician. Europe, Merkel, and elites everywhere are comfortable with Hillary and Bill. With perhaps the exception of Putin, who is a destabilizing force that no one (Hillary included) really knows how to deal with.

Who will thus question the elite consensus that will continue to stretch across oceans and continents? Trump's character has provided the perfect excuse to maintain a broken status quo. Let's see how long that broken consensus lasts after January 20th 2017.

Posted by Keeley at October 26, 2016 2:43 PM
Comment #409046

I don’t see Hillbilly’s vagina getting elected. I’ve seen this before in 1980. Reagan as much as started a war with Russia if you listen to the media back then. He was portrayed as a warmonger and mushroom clouds were in all the Democratic’s campaign ads.

We see the same thing now. Not even the villain has changed. There’s more of a chance Hillbilly will pass out and fall on the button than there is of Trump starting a war.

Posted by: Weary Willie at October 27, 2016 11:12 AM
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