Monday, 10 October 2016

From A British Perspective

Another presidential political debate in the USA and mixed reactions from commentators and viewers. The BBC spoke to a small number of Americans who watched the debate and they gave me the feeling they thought Donald Trump had done pretty well. My fear is that America is not yet ready to have a woman as president and that there's an appetite for change, any change.

Perhaps it was an appetite for change that led to the unexpected Brexit vote which so divided Britain. The old cliche about frying pans and fires comes to mind however. Trump effectively blamed Mrs Clinton for all the failures of American government over many years. I hope people will look at her voting record. Clinton has not had presidential powers to date, nor a presidential veto. How she voted as a senator will say something about her beliefs and intentions. In the debate she appeared to me to be the more rational and measured, despite the personal animosity which was palpable.

It seems to me, as an outsider looking in, that the republicans went to great lengths to ensure Obama achieved as little as possible, voting in opposition even on issues where they had previously been in agreement, just to prevent the record showing a black president had achieved good things. Mrs Clinton cannot be blamed for that.

Trump was right about one thing, America is divided, just as Britain too is divided and that's why I fear he may win. I don't believe he's honest and I don't believe he respects women, I do believe he uses every loophole to avoid tax and brags about it. I do believe he would look after his own in that regard if he wins and fail to support the middle classes, which in the USA, as here in Britain, make up the engine of the economy.

From a British perspective I think it's a great shame we didn't embrace Europe. We could have had some influence there and Europe could have some influence in the world. If Trump becomes US President, aggressive and impulsive as he is, I hope we will have the sense to distance ourselves. Which is sad, because I really am very fond of the US and my American friends.

Malcolm Snook, author, blogger and photographer.

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