Carolyn had mixed thoughts about all the Americans celebrating Joe Biden’s presidential win. I didn’t. It’s a matter of walking and chewing gum at the same time.
After the media called the election for Biden, crowds filled the streets of many of our cities. They were ecstatic. If you’ve read my posts, you know we were, too.
But Carolyn wondered if the celebration should have been more subdued. Trump refused to concede (as I long predicted) and Republicans would launch lawsuits claiming voter fraud. Evidence? Don’t confuse us with details. Of course, to date 72.6 million Americans voted for Trump. But 77.9 million (+5.3 million) voted for Biden.
Emotional eight-year-old that he is (I used to peg him at 10–12), Trump seems intent on wrecking the White House now that he’s received the first of his eviction notices. The Electoral College and congressional acceptance will follow.
And yet—the General Services Administration continues to withhold transition funds to help the president-elect get his team up-to-speed and in place. Not surprising.
Read The Fifth Risk by Michael Lewis, and you’ll see how uninterested Trump was in his own administration’s transition following his 2016 victory. Lewis offers a meaningful observation from Kathy Sullivan, former astronaut and chief scientist at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration: “The sense of identity as a Citizen has been replaced by Consumer. The idea that government should serve citizens like a waiter or concierge, rather than in a ‘collective good’ sense.”
For Trump, government exists to serve Donald Trump and his quest for greater wealth. “Collective good” be damned.
Trump supporters see America as a land of rugged individualists to be freed from the shackles of Washington. Read Lewis and learn how Washington supports farmers and props up the economies of small towns and rural counties. The “John Wayne syndrome” offers the depth of old-fashioned celluloid movie film.
Oh, on Monday Trump fired Secretary of Defense Mark Esper. Nothing like adding more instability to the national situation.
Back to the pro-Biden celebrations. I mentioned to Carolyn that the Biden win was the key first step in halting America’s four-year skid into madness. That deserves celebrating. And that can be done without putting on rose-colored glasses.
Trump will leave the White House, but as Biden takes the oath of office, Trump probably will be tweeting from the golf course in Florida. That will be a first in my lifetime. The Biden team also may find a lot of sabotage in the West Wing. And the nation will not unite in singing “Kumbaya.”
Will Trump still influence tens of millions of Americans? Undoubtedly. But his influence may wane as he struggles to pay off his debts. A media contract backed by super-rich supporters or ripping off his campaign funds might help. By this June 30, criminal indictments against him may be secured by New York State and New York County (Manhattan).
So, like someone who’s undergone serious surgery, the first step towards health is successful surgery itself. Recovery requires a positive outlook and lots of patience.
Come January 20, the United States will be in a better position to safeguard all Americans’ health—a coronavirus vaccine will come—economy and security. But the journey of a thousand miles really does begin with just a single step.