I hear that crowds of Americans are protesting the election of Donald Trump as the 45th US head of state. They blame the president-elect himself.
Who is really at fault? And to whom or what should these disillusioned voters address their demands?
Unhappy citizens have to blame someone, or something; I understand this. So here are some suggestions:
- The celebrated, pervasive and multifaceted, right-center-left US media are first and foremost responsible. Our press, the ‘fourth estate’, regarded as the ultimate check on abuse is, in my view, guilty of gross exploitation, motivated by profit, creator of teams of shoddy pundits, polls, and personalities. The US public and perhaps global viewers too have been lured, misinformed and manipulated for eighteen months while media giants, both print and broadcast corporations, indulged themselves in their free speech license. They focused on presidential personalities of any caliber to the exclusion of real issues and their task of educating the public. They sought out and exaggerated salacious detail – tempting us with sexual scandal and financial abuse. Commentators Glen Greenwald and Wayne Barrett rightly focus criticism here.
- Those forlorn protesters in the streets ought to shout not in front of Trump Towers; they need to hammer real hard at the gates of the NY Times, WaPo, Fox News, ABC, NBC, and even the breaking-with-the-rulers-
Democracy Now. Journalism students: start questioning your professors’ habitual invocation of purportedly liberal NYT coverage. Aspiring journalists: reject invitations to these deceivingly biased, self-serving news manufacturers.
- News agencies themselves will be leading the call for the capture of Wikileaks director Julian Assange. With his masterful hacking service, even while exiled for four years within the Ecuadorian embassy, Assange has arranged releases of emails exposing Democratic National Committee and Clinton campaign plotting. This party and their candidate’s campaign have indeed rigged the election process.
- Unquestionably the Democratic Party must answer for its illegal methods to lockout rival Bernie Sanders. It hasn’t even apologized for its insider dealing, which are more damaging to democracy than Clinton’s email irregularities as secretary of state.
- Related to this was FBI director Comey announcing just before election day that more Clinton email investigations were underway. What? Clinton-supporting news media were outraged by this reprehensible government meddling, but not by internal party plots.
- This is the second US election where social network platforms, especially Twitter and Face Book, are considered essential and reliable democracy handhelds (part of what is now called Fifth Estate). Millennials and media professionals indulge these communication tools as a sure means of free speech, inclusive citizenship and truth. With these in hand, their liberal views will surely prevail. So convinced are American free speech advocates of the merits of these devices, that youths in China, Syria, Venezuela –whichever governments the US seeks to undermine– must have them too. (Although social networking seems to have flummoxed American Clinton supporters, they are supposed to help stir democratic revolutions abroad.)
- Nationalists will claim foreigners are responsible for November 8th’s failures. Not Russia but Syria will top the list, with Afghanistan and Somalia as seconds. After all, those hordes of fleeing citizens threaten US stability and security–thus the success of Trump in winning over so many Americans. Cheap Mexican labor dislodging US workers is another culprit that won Trump votes.
- One sees little attention directed to the flawed US electoral system however, or to the imperfect American constitution. The US is run by a party duopoly that chokes us between two megastars. Then, the Electoral College (capitalized by Webster dictionary!) defies the popular vote.
- Have you ever heard of a coalition government in the US? When fellow Americans are questioned about why the constitution can’t be changed to remove its proven flaws, they respond with blank stares and wonder. What: question the wisdom of America’s founding fathers?
Then what about finding a way to dislodge an incompetent or criminal president without launching a long, disruptive process of congressional impeachment and court procedures? Ever heard of a simple vote-of-no-confidence, a snap election? No; American presidential and congressional elections can occur only every four years. Period.
Finally, although this list can be expanded, we have to admit sloppy procedures at the many polling stations. A country engaged in the electronic collection of mega data on citizens and foreigners could surely streamline its election process to ensure that no citizen has doubts or fears about their eligibility and where and when to vote.