I cast my first vote for president in 1972, and had the misfortune to back McGovern, who got all of 17 electoral votes.
Nixon got 520.
I was working for the Coggeshall Tree Company in Pleasantville at the time. My boss, Dave Coggeshall, was a descendent of John Coggeshall, one of the 17th Century founders of Rhode Island. Dave’s family had a summer home on the same lake as the Rockefellers. While fishing around for financial backers, Henry Ford had asked Dave’s grandfather for a small loan to start his automobile company. But granddad turned Henry down because, who the hell was Henry Ford?
Dave had been to Kent Academy, had a butterfly collection, had toured the country as a young man and worked on a ranch in Arizona. He quoted poetry and classical literature. The family estate in P’ville had a full-time groundskeeper. One brother was a lawyer, the other a doctor.
But Dave was what was called a “non-conformist” at the time, and became a dendrologist. More than that, he was a committed socialist. Which is why my father sent me to work for him.
So, I was moping around the field office, bitter about McGovern’s humiliating defeat, which seemed to spell disaster for the fragmenting anti-war and civil rights coalitions. Worse, the Silent Majority had made it crystal clear what America was really all about.
Dave looked at me and shook his head and said, “What are your crying about? I voted for Norman Thomas six times.”
From that perspective, it’s kind of funny watching everyone moan and groan about Trump storming the White House like Andrew Jackson. It was fun watching people lap up his patented line of BS. It was fun watching Hillary go down, knowing we’ll never have to endure her or Bill again.
A Hillary Clinton presidency would have been BORING! If you wanted to write for Boy’s Life or Yankee Magazine, Hillary was your girl.
If you write for CounterPunch, you had to be secretly rootin’ for Putin and Trump all along.
Good god almighty, Trump is the best thing that ever could have happened to America, if you’re a socialist or a revolutionary. Sure, the environment will deteriorate faster than ever before, but it’s going down anyway. And sure, the One Percent will amass more of your Social Security, savings and pensions (assuming you have any) while bunkering down in walled compounds like Zionists in the West Bank or white supremacists in some South African Bantustan. Cops and imperial wars will proliferate, but that too was going to happen anyway – short of some mutiny in the military.
No, Trump is the guy who will finally make the contradictions of capitalism clear to all the dopes who bought his bill of goods. The Donald is going to bring about the final phase. He is the man!
Glory in his spectacle! Let the mockery begin!!