There’s a scene in Zero Dark Thirty when the main character, Maya, is asked what she believed the chances were that Osama bin Laden was hiding in the compound where he was later killed. She replied, “100% he’s there. OK, 95%, ’cause I know certainty freaks you guys out, but it’s 100.”
Before we talk about Hillary Clinton, let’s talk briefly about Donald Trump. I’m not in the camp that believes he’s definitely going to lose the election despite all of the media indicators such as polls and buzz. That doesn’t mean I’m calling this election rigged, but I’m also not going to fall victim to the experience and common sense that told us long ago Trump couldn’t win the nomination, either. This is a weird election year, so dismissing Trump before the fat lady sings is foolish.
2017 is going to mark several “beginnings” for conservatives. Establishment Republicans will try to push their reset button after trouncing conservatives and getting partially trounced by Democrats. Conservative Republicans will begin to rebuild their momentum after hitting the Establishment roadblock that halted many Tea Party candidates and their agendas. Libertarians will try to rebuild after failing miserably in the year that gave them the best shot of hitting the debate floor and making an impact in national elections. Smaller conservative parties like the Constitution Party will begin their rebranding after failing to be a blip on the radar again.
Every day, there’s a feeling of dread that comes over me. It’s quick; I’ve learned to recognize it and either think through it if it’s mild or pray through it if it’s severe. The dread I feel is that the country and the world may be heading in directions from which we can never return. The road leading left. The direction of lawlessness. The path away from God.
There’s a real fear manifesting around newsrooms and in government conference rooms around the country. Donald Trump and many of his top surrogates are hammering two ideas: voter fraud is going to steal the election from him and media bias is so rampant that the polls (which he once touted) are false.
In the classic movie, The Princess Bride, we find our hero trying to save his love from the hands of the evil Vizzini. He challenges him to a battle of wits where Vizzini must discern which cup has poison and which is safe. Then, both will drink and the winner is the one not dead. The trick was on him, though. Both cups were poisoned. Wesley, aka Dread Pirate Roberts, had developed a tolerance for the poison, so regardless of which cup Vizzini chose, he would die and Wesley would live.
A man spent his life harming others. His multitude of business failures hung partners and employees out to dry. His casinos and the strip clubs in them enabled the degradation of moral fabric in ordinary Americans. His use of eminent domain, bankruptcies, and conning skills took money and property from tens of thousands. Most women in his life report a petty, misogynistic little man behind the empire his daddy gave him. Why would any thinking American be shocked by a video that clearly represents the character Donald Trump has always demonstrated?
For years, the Libertarian Party has been the protest vote. As the party that represents liberty within its name and individual freedoms within its platform, it was a natural fit for hundreds of thousands of conservatives who were done with the Republican Party. This was supposed to be their year. This was supposed to be the time when the Democrats and Republicans put up such weak candidates that the Libertarian Party could work its way into the debates and therefore into national prominence.
The standard liberal mentality is to blame others. When a liberal sees a friend or someone in their family do something bad, they blame the system, the elites, or some other esoteric classification of “anybody but us.” When a liberal sees someone they don’t know fall into the hands of crime or perversion, they blame society. When a liberal sees their candidates lose, they blame the vast right-wing conspiracy.
Some are reporting that there could be 100 million people watching the first debate between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. Moderator Lester Holt will be alone in his duties of asking the questions. We’ll all be paying attention to the answers, but the questions themselves are actually equally or more important.