The US presidential election is upon us, and it has revolutionized the perception and workings of politics in North America. Everyone there is up to their ears in the rhetoric of both candidates. We have seen them debate, yell at each other, plagiarize ads and in general, act like children. Most people didn’t think this would be possible, but it’s going to be either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump – and almost everyone will tell you they’re fucked either way.
But what about the rest of the world? How does someone from a country that doesn’t share a border with the US of A see this kindergarten fight for the nuke button? You see, I’m one such person, and this is what I’m going to be writing about, in the hopes that it’ll bring some insight into the whole issue to those of you that so far have only seen the election from the inside.
The first topic that I want to touch in here is how everyone thinks it’s the end of the world, how each candidate spells doom in a different colour, but doom none the less. Most Eaglelandians see this election as something unheard of, something that could have never happened: a race for the presidency between the avatar of all the vices of the establishment, and a crazy racist millionaire with no political background.
Let me tell you something guys, it’s not the first time something like this has happened.
I hail from Argentina, a country with a long history of being fucked by its own population, a country with the third or fourth biggest extension in America, a continent known for its vast expanses. A country only second to USA in natural resources, where you can plant a screw and water it and a boat will grow. A country very similar to the USA, with a population composed mostly from European immigrants. A country that in normal conditions should be a superpower, yet stays in the third world for only one reason: the lazy and shortsighted view of it’s population when it comes to politics. It has been like that for about a century: in the late 1800s we were among the richest in the world, with palaces being built all over the urban areas, and in the early 1900s scaring Europe in the dreadnought race. What happened? The population started blindly following political parties, while the elected officials wanted to make a quick buck by selling themselves to the big world powers. That ran unchecked for decades, until the 2000s. And last year, something happened: a party that had been in power for 12 years, with almost complete control of the media and plagued by corruption was faced with an upcoming election with no strong candidate to represent them, and a big portion of the population fed up with an establishment that in the name of human rights had created a welfare state with tax pressure never seen before with the sole purpose of maintaining themselves in power.
Sound familiar? While the ideological gap was fueled by politics rather than race like in the USA, the situation was the same: A candidate had risen to challenge the establishment, a man from the upper class – millionaire, considered to be ultra right0wing by most and without the endorsement from the two big political parties, Macri. The party that was in power, presenting themselves as left wing and inclusive, put forward their own candidate who had been in the public function for the last twenty years and changed his discourse to that which was most popular at the time and fervently denied ever saying anything different, Scioli.
And so these two went to the ballots, with about a fourth of the population claiming that if their favoured candidate didn’t win, the country would crumble. The remaining half was faced with the bitter choice between picking one of two candidates they hated for different reasons, or a third party that would mean the victory of the candidate they feared the most. The establishment did all they could to ensure their continuity: from attempted fraud to using state resources for the campaign, a smear campaign against the other candidate. All the while the anti-establishment candidate preached to the population that there was a way out and they shouldn’t think it was either corruption or famine. Macri won, with 52% of the vote, many rejoiced, and yet more thought it’d be the end.
None of IT happened. The “minorities” did not get stripped of their rights and put in camps like the left said would happen, and the industry did not boom with endless investments from multinational firms as the right said would happen.
Where am I going with all of this? Neither the holocaust that diehard Hillary supporters claim Trump will bring will come true, nor will the country reach a golden age in four years, as diehard Trump supporters claim. But there’s something to be considered: is it possible to break away from an establishment with seemingly endless resources, mass media control, and absolutely obvious corruption? It is. And it’s an ideal worth pursuing.
So the vote should not be about which candidate will make it easier for you to reach the end of the month with money to spare, but rather which candidate will give your country a better chance for a future free from the situation you’re in now, forced to choose between corruption incarnate and an irrational man who doesn’t know what the middle class man’s life is.
As for the second and less grim point of this, perception of the election from far away, a few things can be said. First of all, the whole thing has been as ridiculous as it has looked from inside, but without a real worry for the outcome.The USA has baffled the world, with things like the claim of building a wall on the Mexican border, an elderly woman attempting to ‘meme it up’ like the young’uns, the branding of a cartoon frog as a hate symbol, and all sorts of other weirdness.
The USA has been long perceived by most over here as a an empire that doesn’t want to admit to being one, yet one thing has been constant: Democracy is important to the yankees. Everyone knows the gringos will fight you to death if you so much as disrespect Lady Liberty. The Democrats hate guns and the Republicans hate Darwin. And everyone over there has the utmost trust and confidence in the Constitution and the American way, so much that they’ll give you a list of their ‘presidents’ complete with their number and the dates when they assumed and left office. You tell them that their government is making up things to have more control over citizens, and they’ll call you a conspiracy theorist.
Yet, this election made that image crumble. We’ve seen for the first time Democrats wanting to vote a Republican and vice versa, and a big portion of the good ol’ United States are genuinely sick of the condition of their democracy, perceiving it as a lie. We’ve seen the rise of the ‘alt-right’, a movement held together solely by their hatred towards the establishment and their attempt to turn democracy into nothing but a façade. The media covers it with just as much disbelief, though not as much towards the condition of democracy but rather towards Trump’s influence. Over here, many consider what the average US citizen sees as liberal ideology to be a moderate right wing ideology, and the media has universally relayed pro-Hillary content. The people who get their international news from TV will almost all tell you that Trump is the worst thing that could happen to USA, and most who get their news from the internet will tell you the opposite. It has been a true phenomenon as it has completely changed the perception of North America from our point of view.
I’m not as much of an outsider to what happens over there as most of my countrymen since I talk to people from all parts of USA on a daily basis, yet all of this has been strange to see. If there’s a bit of advice I can give to all my North American peers though, it’s this: Vote against corruption, and nothing else. Let not the sacrifice of Pepe the Frog be in vain, let not the spaghetti that has been shed be forgotten. Ensure a better future for your country by not being swayed by fear, because the moment you start voting out of fear of what the politicians tell you will happen, you lose any control over your future.
This article will probably be one of the most grim and realistic here at Robek World, but I believe the situation merits it. Make sure that by the end of this election we can all go back to “meme-ing” it up without a care in the world. You guys have a chance to break away from being a police state yet, and the world is watching.
Don’t miss it.
Full list of our election day entertainment: