• Thursday, June 20, 2024
businessday logo

BusinessDay

A strange place

businessday-icon

I’ve been absolutely dreading this. In-fact the shame of having to publically admit that I may not only have been wrong but positively naive, and verging on foolhardy in my fantastically poor assessment of the US public’s mood has resulted in more than a few sleepless nights.

What on earth is he rabbiting on about this time I hear you ask?

Right, here goes – and please remember to throw this newspaper away as soon as you’ve finished reading it. Shred first if possible.

Was it about nine months ago that I audaciously, all-be-it indirectly told (sigh – deep, deep, deep sigh) Donald Trump that his winning the Republican nomination would simply lead to the easiest of victories for Hilary Clinton?

Did I really believe Trump’s ambition would result in the most embarrassing of defeats? The mother of all jokes? Or better still a most perverse pleasure of watching someone jump off a cliff in perpetual slow motion??

A year ago I didn’t even pay him the respect of uttering his name.

But the more I assess the mood in the US the less confident I am of a Trump defeat. In-fact the opposite is the case. A Trump victory in the November general elections seems less and less far-fetched with each passing day.

There are seven reasons why a Trump victory grows more possible; and, dare I say it, more likely by the second.

1. Terrorism
The Republican party has always been seen as the party that takes the tougher stance against terrorism; respected in the US and around the world for its firm belief in pre-emptive measures. It is of no surprise that the theme of this week’s Republican Convention is ‘Making America A Safer Place’. I recall a good friend of mine warning me a year or so ago after reading my article on Hilary Clinton’s ‘inevitable victory’, that the US usually votes republican when afraid. Fear will continue to increase with each explosion and with every shooting.

2. Hilary Clinton
Unfortunately for Mrs. Clinton she isn’t the most popular doll in the shop. She’s perceived to be part of the establishment that US citizens are so tired and weary of; and her ability to gain the public’s trust has been dealt a severe blow by the email scandal.

  1. Police shootings
    Whilst watching CNN as I tucked into my favourite breakfast of pancakes and syrup at Nuts About Cakes earlier this morning I was very abruptly put off the sumptuous culinary delight in front of me by the revelation that the person who shot and killed three policemen in Cleveland on Sunday was a young black man – so soon after another young black man killed six police officers in Dallas!

    What’s all this doing? Playing beautifully into Donald Trump’s hands!

    Why?

    Because there’s already enough discontent and angst amongst many whites in the US as a result of a black man winning two terms in the oval office. What better way to unleash their anger and frustration than to vote for the man who promises to ban Muslims from entering the US?

    4. Black lives matter

    Every time members / followers, or sympathisers of Black Lives Matter cause traffic, disturbance, or block roads during their protests, the angst amongst whites increases, and the wisdom of voting for Trump becomes ever the more apparent. If I had a message for Black Lives Matter, it would be – “Not now. Stay at home, and please please please shut the f… up! No more angry rhetoric. Wait until after November.”

    5. Brexit
    We all thought Brexit would be whacked for six. We felt certain the ‘Remains’ would triumph magnificently and so very easily. We underestimated the angst and frustration of those above the age of 40. We underestimated their desire to take their nation back. We underestimated the adverse effects that freedom of movement (seen as a major conduit for terrorism) would have on the majority of the British population. And we were clueless as to their determination to vote en mass.
    The Brexiteers won, and the reality of today’s very different world waxes stronger and stronger.

    6. The world as we know it is long gone

    As I’ve said countless times to friends and associates during the past few months, “The world is in a very strange place.”  It is for this reason the Brexiteers won, thereby demonstrating a powerful desire for the restriction of free movement. It’s because of this peculiar juncture in which we find ourselves that the people most in danger in America today are the very ones that are supposed to protect the citizens. A somewhat surreal place in which a man that promises to close the door on Muslims is starting to look like the more attractive option.

 

  1. Political correctness is dying

    If I’m entirely honest I must confess to being quite pleased about this one. If there’s one thing that irritates the hell out of me it’s ‘political correctness’. This fear of not saying what one is thinking because others may frown upon it is not only annoying but in my view encourages cowardice and pretence. Just say it as it is!

Despite the vitriolic reactions to some of Trump’s statements the reality is he’s saying what many people are thinking but are too afraid to openly say. Trump’s ability to say it as it is speaks to the hearts of many US Citizens.

Finally, whilst watching CNN’s broadcast of the latest US police killings with a friend on Sunday afternoon she made the following statement;

“Coups, Brexit, Terrorist Attacks, Police Killings, Racial Unrest; Nigeria’s positively blissful  right now in comparison. Thank God we live in Nigeria.”

A strange place indeed!

 

Segun Akande