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As you read this we have entered a new world. It is hard to list the various permutations that immediately pop into one’s mind, Make America Grate Again, Make America Straight Again, Make America Hate Again, take your pick. A world where bombast, bluster, shady dealmaking, a new level of intolerance, insensitivity to anything non-white, non-Christian, or non-conformist, off-color jokes, gender inequality, and for that reason inequality itself are the norm not the exception. At 12:01 yesterday afternoon we started to turn the clocks backwards to a time when supposedly American was great. There is no roadmap or blueprint for when that time was, if ever, yet we will strive to get there at warp speed. Get ready and buckle your seat belts, because we may no longer have to deal with the inconvenience of that any longer either. After all regulations only hold us back!

trump era

Dawn of a New Error—Lance Simmens

We are entering a period where enlightenment and progress will be viewed with great suspicion and likely disdain.

We are entering a period where enlightenment and progress will be viewed with great suspicion and likely disdain. One can only hear the haunting voice of Rod Serling preparing for an upcoming episode of “The Twilight Zone”, circa 2017. Of course it will be in black and white, no pun intended, only the sorry spectacle of a world neatly divided along cultural, religious, ethnic and geographical lines that clearly delineate between “us” and “them.” Science be damned, full speed ahead, might makes right, America first, winning is everything, it’s the only thing, God Bless America.

Trump is not intent on building one wall; his world consists of a maze of walls all designed to separate or segregate if you will between those worthy of success and those who simply cannot cut it. There is no clear cut path to the top, one must have access to the shortcuts to surmount the obstacles of this maze, and the shortcuts are both guarded and dispensed by those who determine both the rules and the entry requirements. America is poised to enter a period that will resemble the “closed societies” of ancient China.

We are potentially entering a new period of modern-day feudalism. The Great Wall in China was a similar protection built between the 14th and 17th century. In every respect we may be embarking on a philosophical concept that actually predates the arrival of Christopher Columbus to our shores in 1492. The Trump phenomena is an experiment borne of desperation, anger, fear, and resignation. The quixotic nature of the American electorate may spark a reversal in short order and if the trends identified since the unfortunate and unexpected results of the November 8 election are any indication buyer’s remorse may have already set in.

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Elections do have consequences and we are about to experience the ‘caveat emptor’ that is a direct result of frustration, ignorance, and a grossly corrupted set of governmental institutions and leaders. All spawned by a deregulatory capitalism that has abandoned workers, people of color, women, immigrants and those not willing to sacrifice personal lives for the workplace. It is the new American way, or maybe it is just the old American way exposed in a way that was once thought unfair or unseemly. Today it is showcased.

Trump enters office with an unfavorable rating that is unprecedented for as long as there has been polling. He finished the election with almost 3 million votes less than the “loser.” The trajectory of declining confidence in his ability to make momentous decisions or even surround himself with people who can operate as a check on his juvenile temperament and astounding lack of perspective with respect to the enormity of responsibilities entrusted to the position he holds is worrisome to say the least. His twitter tirades and the thin veneer of security that protects him from impulsively lashing out against perceived or real criticism is a short fuse threatening to explode the delicate balance that diplomacy seeks to temper.

Top this off with an unhealthy dose of denial as to what constitutes a conflict of interest, and an ongoing counterintelligence investigation by several government agencies to whom he has decided to go to war with on the issue of whether or not he or his staff are involved in an international election swindle benefitting his beloved comrade Vladimir Putin, something which if proven will call into question a charge of treason, and there is basically no chance of a restful night’s sleep anytime soon.

And while massive resistance is certainly called for, without at least some semblance of patriotism from within the ranks of the GOP, think McCain, Graham, Rubio, Paul, the die may be cast for at least a string of retrograde policies for some time to come. So yes there is plenty of reason for concern, which places a premium on vigilance and resistance, and a little bit of luck certainly would not hurt either. Welcome to the twilight zone.

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Lance Simmens