Letters to the Editor for July 12, 2018

Trump and the Politics of Divide

I have to counter the opinion piece by Dr. Tom Hastings (“Stand up to the swampiest President” in the May 21, 2018 Post-Record), with some real political/Trump analysis.

First of all, Dr. Hasting’s piece simply rehashes the tired divide, hate-narrative lies promoted shamelessly 24/7 on mainstream media and exacerbated on social media. As a citizen interested in politics are you not tired of the personal attacks, the Trump is a criminal and racist narrative? More than any time in my life, the hate and division among citizens seems like an epidemic not unlike the homeless crises? A side note: The Post-Record and its editors seem to have a bad habit of promoting this same narrative. Maybe it gets readership? I think the citizens of Camas deserve better.

Why the hate and divide? Answer: Politicians. It seems like politicians rely on this way too much if not all the time, for it allows them, for one, to easily carve out voting blocks by race, gender, sexual orientation, social class and whatever else they can think of. Winning the election and holding on to power is the No. 1 priority. This is a real political strategy and it does work. Former President Barack Obama used this to great effect. I challenge anyone to Google “Obama, divisive president” and see how many hits you get.

We saw this played out very early on in the 2016 campaign as Hillary Clinton and her handlers went full bore with the “Trump is a racist” mantra and we had media endlessly regurgitating this hate-filled coverage of Trump rallies where Mexican demonstrators (and operatives) where harassing Trump supporters at rallies. I guess if you repeat this mantra enough it sticks, right? Fast-forward to now: We have Trump the “white” all-powerful racist and fascist boogieman conveniently used as a rallying point this election season. Just look at the campaign literature-messaging now coming to your doorstep and on campaign ads. “My opponent voted for Trump!” Yuck! Checkmate, game over.

Did Hillary Clinton have any ideas to promote in 2016? Let’s revisit: we had all of South America vs. white “racists” of the North; the “war” on women (men vs. women); class warfare — rich vs. poor (Occupy Wall Street was a pathetic (non)movement. I’m hoping the general public caught on to that scam, but maybe not — we had many Bernie Sanders fans; more middle east demagoguery — Muslims vs. the World (Trump is guilty of this too); and finally blacks vs. “racist” white people and police? Widely broadcast via our “benevolent” media, the 3X5 card of reality we are suppose to believe is that black oppression is somehow worse today than it was during Jim Crow or the Civil War? This is the politics of divide. Political messaging that is void of any real solutions to what really oppresses people-classes, our economy, society, and our liberty, yet pits people against each other.

Candidate Trump had ideas some I liked and disliked:

1. The Border Wall: A dumb and costly idea, but keeping out criminal illegals is a good idea. Just ask the family of Kathryn Steinle killed by an illegal immigrant felon while walking along a San Francisco pier arm-in-arm with her father.

2. Tariffs: Trade wars are tricky and complicated and can and will affect your wallet and lifestyle. Do you think maybe we can delve into full analysis of this? No? Readership will tune out?

3. Tax Cuts: Always a good idea, but always check the fine print. It’s amazing that you never hear politicians promoting tax cuts? Is not that a winning idea?

Dr. Hastings may be right about Trump being the “swampiest president,” but my conclusions are different from his. Trump repeatedly voiced his mantra: “Drain the Swamp.” That was a thrilling idea to me, but it may have failed to resonate with others. What is the “Swamp?” At this current date, Trump’s aides and counsel — the people that have his ear are the Swamp: nefarious characters/operatives and recycled people roaming the halls of the White House like Goldman Sachs goons Steve Mnuchin and James Donovan, and Goldman alumni like Gary Cohn and Larry Kudlow, a former advisor to the Clintons along with John Podesta as well as an economist for the Federal Reserve bank; there is Mike Pompeo, Secretary of State and a rabid supporter of mass surveillance of the American people. There’s Gina Haspel, a CIA director wrapped up in numerous torture scandals. And we certainly cannot forget Mr. bomb, bomb, war, war John Bolton, National Security Adviser, one of the chief architects behind the aggressive U.S. war policy in the Middle East since George W. Bush’s administration, to name a few. The Swamp also includes a good size chunk of Congress many of who have held office for decades.

Presidents come and go; yet the Swamp seems to stay in place indefinitely. Maybe this is why we have endless war, endless taxes, safety and health issues, education problems, vast regulatory burdens for business, and a divide that without much effort you can see with your own eyes: Homeless people? The rich do get richer and the poor get poorer. I assure you my understanding of this divide will sound different than Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton.

Thank you for reading this. For the record, I will neither call myself left or right, nor Republican or Democrat terms that divide people. I tend to think people are more nuanced than what seems like the perpetually changing definition of what these terms mean. I did not vote for Trump. I thought he is/was not a statesman, and though I really liked the drain the swamp idea and tax cuts, he did/does not have a real handle of what really ills our country outside of the hate and divide politics promoted by unscrupulous politicians and the propaganda mills — the mainstream media, which when it comes to political bias, I’ll quote a good friend of mine, “reason takes a back seat to team based psychology.”

Freedom Frank Alonzo, Camas

David McDevitt for Congress

There is something happening in America. These past two years we have seen great change in this country. Our beliefs and our resolve has been tested by the division around us. There is something happening in America when millions of people across our country are coming out in protest of a government they feel doesn’t represent them. There is something happening in America when people feel the need to pour into the streets in numbers that we haven’t seen in generations to fight for the rights that are being taken away from them everyday. There is something happening in America, when so many people who have never participated in politics before, are anxiously counting down to election day because they know how important it is. There is something happening in America, and there is something happening in Washington’s 3rd Congressional District. We as a people are ready to take our country back, and we as Washingtonians are ready to take our district back from those who are not properly representing us. David McDevitt is the candidate to do that. He is the candidate that believes in putting people first.

During his campaign for Washington’s 3rd Congressional seat, David McDevitt has held nearly 75 community chats and town halls to gauge public perception on a variety of issues in an age when our representatives are afraid to talk to us and to be held accountable.

David McDevitt knows that putting people first means considering healthcare a universal human right, and that everyone should receive quality care. Putting people first means building an economy for the 99%, not just those who work on Wall Street. Putting people first means addressing the issues of equality, the concerns of every women around us, of communities of color, of the LGBTQ communities, and of our veterans who should never feel insecure.

The problems we face today are not going to be solved with simple solutions. They are moral problems that are held within all of us, and we need someone with great morals to help solve them. David McDevitt is that man. He is the candidate that is putting people first.

Nathan Taylor, Vancouver

Concerns about Justice Kennedy’s successor

The U.S. Supreme Court just raised the election stakes through the roof. Justices changed the American workplace — perhaps forever — by sticking a pin in union organizing.

This jeopardizes the fight for living wages and safer working conditions. It’s uncertain when or whether they can be restored. The retirement of Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy scares me. He was a counterbalance. His replacement may endanger free speech, a free press, immigration reform, marriage equality, reproductive rights, gun regulation — it doesn’t stop there.

Voting David McDevitt for 3rd District Congress begins a legislative turnaround.

Don’t vote? Don’t complain.

Juanita P. Greenway, Vancouver

Supporting Long for Congress

I strongly support Carolyn Long to represent Washington’s 3rd Congressional District. Carolyn has been part of our community for 20+ years as an educator at Washington State University in Vancouver. Carolyn has shown that she listens to the voters by holding town halls in front of almost 2,000 people since the start of her campaign. She has committed to continuing to hold town halls if elected. Carolyn Long will be a representative who listens to her constituents. I urge you to support Carolyn Long for Congress.

Geni Donaghey, Vancouver