He thought Donald Trump was a good president.
As the Trump presidency is winding down and I am thinking about my dad wondering how he would feel about him now? My dad died a couple years ago so he wasn't around to vote for him this time, which I believe he would have, nor was he around to witness this seemingly off-kilter transition of power.
When I was kid I spent a lot of time with my dad. He would tell me about the world and his views on what this country needs. "A good dictator," he would say. He felt progress was often halted or slowed by politics. He was, of course right on that, but I'm sure he knew that one: a good dictator would likely eventually be corrupted by power and two: that's not how this country was put together. And he believed this country to be the greatest idea so far put forth. But I knew what he meant. The last fours years I wondered if dad considered Trump this "good dictator?"
75 million people still believed in Trump more than Joe Biden to lead us the next four years. On the news these supporters appear to be militant sort with guns ready to start a civil war. Surely not all 75 million who voted for him feel this way. I know a good many Trump supporters who believe in the constitution far more than they do a single man, but I think they are feeling a tad disenfranchised because they believe the stories of fraud and do not trust the media is covering it fairly. Social media seems to show us the far extremes and that is also being reported.
As a member of the "media" I defend the practice of what we do, because frankly, the alternative scares the hell out of me. Even at a fault, a free press is better than a controlled propaganda machine.
I'm a pretty harsh critic also of our profession. For instance I have watched reporters on on network news blatantly state the president's claims as false. Are they? Evidence seems to show they are but can we, as reporters, state without a doubt that they are false? I believe we need to report them similar to the way we report criminal charges.
"Alleged claims by the president is more accurate than "false claims." Or unproven claims, unsubstantiated claims. There are so many ways to report this that is more accurate than stating they are false.
To state they are false we leave ourselves open to being biased and wrong. Iif determined later to not false, the profession suffers damaging credibility to its foundation. The foundation is already cracked. If we use language that we should be using we are not risking damage and also not stating something as fact, even if evidence shows it as such. Socrates taught us a fact isn't so easily determined, and yet here we are still so blatantly egotistical that we claim to know truths.
We need to do better. I don't know for certain that the president, who by the way is privy to the best intelligence in this country, doesn't know something I don't? Do I believe him? No!
But can I say he is wrong beyond a shadow of a doubt? No!
I don not have access to all the court documents or evidence.
As a reporter we can say the president's claims have been deemed not worthy of further action by the courts. And so far he has lost nearly every case and the pending ones don't appear to be backed by any further evidence that will change the outcome of the election.
We need to be better. Journalists need to understand our job isn't to know a damn thing, our job is to not know answers, but question everyone else's answers to seek the best possible information to present the public. I think most of us do this, though the constant barrage of tweets and what has been determined over and over again to be inaccurate information from the president has made us all a tad salty and fatigued. We have all made mistakes. Me for certain.
I don't know!
It's a statement I use a lot because based on the best information I obtain on any subject, it is always peppered with unanswered questions as well. I do not believe our president for 17 more days is a trustworthy human being. This stems back way before he took the oath of office and he has done nothing to change my mind, in fact, listening today to his phone call with a team of folks in Georgia, it confirms even further he isn't fit for the office in my opinion. He continues to offer no viable evidence to back his claims and rants on and on, then doesn't believe others who do have facts to back up their claims the election was not a giant scam.
I'd truly like to hear my dad right now. What would he think? Good dictator?
I don't know.
As far as the overall Trump presidency there are some good things that can be said. I believe he inherited a slow growing economy that was positioned to remain slow, steady growth. He enhanced and sped that up. No questions about that. If the Dow etc... are true indicators of progress he excelled for sure. History seems to tell us however that such rapid and unchecked growth is dangerous. We'll see.
I sure as hell don't know.
I believe he is actually a peace president. I fear some of his actions will lead to conflicts we cannot avoid in the future, but I love that he managed to not start a Great War we cannot get out of like G.W. Bush did. For that I am forever grateful to him 9fingers crossed for the next 17 days.)
Escalating tensions in Iran seem to have me a bit nervous, but at the moment, I applaud this president's restraint in using force. I even applaud his meeting with North Korea. I thought this was a bit of a proud moment in terms of U.S. history and diplomacy. Again we'll see if the intensions were as good as we can hope. Again, I do not trust the man and it is really unclear what the result of this meeting will be.
I don't know.
I like to look for the good in anyone, and it has been a real struggle the last few years. I applaud the notion of rapid deployment of vaccine testing and production of much needed supplies. I fear this could've been handled better to prevent the deaths we have had, but it is impressive what this country can do if tasked. I'm pissed at the president for not understanding the problems of community spread and acting more responsibly as our leader, but he did institute a rapid response finally. Could he have positioned us better? Yes, but every president has been caught with their pants down on something.
I don't know.
I won't go into this president's failures here, this is already too long and frankly, I could write all week and not cover what I feel are tremendous failures with long term repercussions I believe the Biden presidency will have challenge after challenge just to fix problems and that's only if the world stabilizes and nothing else becomes an immediate problem. That's not how the world works and we're already looking at potential problems rising up in the Middle East that will likely rear its ugly head within the next month.
The president continues to act like he's not interested in a smooth transition of power and I feel internal strife that will hamper the next administrations efforts to proceed.
Biden will have to be flawless, and history shows no human who could be that good. So this is going to be a rocky time.
Though I don't know.
Dad, if you're listening, I could use your guidance. Though I'm guessing you'd tell me something like,"that'll be up to you do figure out, I taught you what I know, now it's up to you."
I miss you dad. I don't think this was your "good dictator" though I feel he would like to be a dictator by his actions. I pray for a peaceful or at least manageable transition. I think as we move forward I'd like to ask the country a question my dad's dad would ask, "are you helping or hindering?" I guess we could ask ourselves this no matter who is in charge?
I don't know.