So, Trump has Newt Gingrich and Hillary has Bill Clinton. That is a really good deal because (as quiet as it is kept) leaders got along after hours for the good of the nation back in the day. If you notice Bill Clinton is like Bush 41’s play son. President Clinton and Speaker Gingrich met privately late at night and supposedly saved Social Security.
It seems most of the players in the political arena are actually acting most of the time. On the Democrat side, most members of the Congressional Black Caucus care more about keeping their positions of power by promising free this and that than telling the truth about improving our communities. The truth starts with folks taking an honest look in the mirror.
On the Republican side, a little article in the Capitol Hill newspaper from the Clinton/Gingrich era sums it up for me. When the Contract With America Republican revolutionaries went on a retreat to Maryland’s Eastern Shore, a cover band that night played Steve Miller Band’s “The Joker” and a surprising number of freshmen put their fingers to their lips on the part about “I am a midnight toker.” Basically, the reporter felt these high-minded conservatives were no strangers to being literally high.
You know a brother played bass on “The Joker” and that first line about “some people call me the space cowboy…some people call me the doctor of love” got me thinking about the movie Space Cowboys. In that film four Air Force test pilots hoped to be the first Americans in space but the government in their wisdom replaced the Air Force with NASA and the first in space was a chimp named Mary Ann. Well, dam.
Four decades later, NASA sought the help of those old fellows because a Russian communication satellite needed to be control and the systems were similar to American old technology. After taking the space shuttle to the Soviet craft, they discovered four nuclear warheads that would target America if they fall out of orbit. Tommy Lee Jones’ character decided to use his jet pack to push the weapons into deep space before finally getting to the moon and dying. Hey, Jones was Vice President Gore’s roommate at Harvard.
Thank you for reading that long movie recap because I needed that foundation to make a point. The point is that those of us who were around the Congress and White House during the Clinton era seems like those space cowboys. Remember, Bill Clinton, Newt Gingrich and House Budget Committee chair John Kasich crafted an economic plan (after fighting like cats and dogs) that left America with a budget surplus and a strong, healthy economy.
After riding his coattails, the nasty Republicans figured out a way to toss homeboy Newt. More surprising, Al Gore loss to George Bush because the same people that the Clinton/Gore White House helped failed to vote. I am not pissed at the Republicans for winning; I am pissed at our community for not voting.
As in the movie Space Cowboys, it’s time for the old school Clinton Dems or the Blue Dog Democrats to rescue the world from pending disaster. To me, there are five sections to the electorate right now. On the Republican side, you have the “traditional establishment, less taxes, pro-business conservatives” and you have the “far Right, listen to talk radio until a blood vessel is going to pop in their forheads, I want my country back” folks. On the Dem side, you have the Clintonites/Obamacrats who are the Dem establishment and you have the new socialists of Bernie Sanders with their give me, give me, give me mentality.
The 5th section would be the millions of people who will sit at home and not vote this year. Mind you, these same people might be living in government-assisted housing and eating food….I better stop there but you get the point.
If the Sanders supporters don’t vote for Clinton, Trump is president. I have friends who argue that Trump being president would be better for our community than Sanders because we will know once and for all that the White House can’t help us and it is therefore vital that we help ourselves by changing our personal actions.
Real talk, Trump’s message of making goods in America sounds similar to the “Look for the Union label” movement of my childhood. Hell yes, we use to have four factories in every south Georgia town and of course we had agriculture. Today, stuff is cheap in the dollar store because it’s made by cheap labor overseas. But, the homies don’t have a dollar because the community is unemployed. Wall Street did that to increase their profit margins. I would pay a little more for American made goods and products if that put people back to work.
We can’t fall for Trump’s excellent acting job; he is more P.T. Barnum than F.D.R. There is a sucker born every minute and you can’t blame Trump for trying to pull off the greatest ruse in history. Being president is harder than it looks and some folks simply aren’t presidential material. In the political arena, you have activists and governors.
Bill Clinton, Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Newt Gingrich, John Kasich and Ronald Reagan are governors while Sarah Palin, Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump are activists. Activists serve an important purpose but to govern requires tact and diplomacy. There is a big difference between Wall Street and Pennsylvania Avenue.
Winning the White House in 2016 might come down to which side listens to their old school space cowboys.