It doesn’t get much more depressing than Donald Trump versus Joe Biden. Con man versus corporate man. Neither candidate is a friend of workers, labor, the disadvantaged, the poor. Neither candidate has an ounce of progressivism in his body. At least for me, neither inspires confidence. One has to win, meaning that America’s decline will continue through 2024.
Perhaps I put too much stock in who is president. Yet for certain issues, surely it does matter. Joe Biden won’t seek to appease his evangelical base by trying to outlaw abortion. Joe Biden won’t try to eliminate Obamacare (and thereby cut health care coverage for millions during a pandemic) just out of spite. Joe Biden won’t deny the reality of climate change and thus will help, in a small way, to prepare for future global disruptions caused by the same. These and other reasons are enough for many people to vote for Joe.
But Joe is largely an empty vessel that’s waiting to be filled by all the usual suspects within the Washington Beltway. His domestic agenda will likely be defined by neoliberal economics and disastrous compromises with Republicans, e.g. cuts to social security, while his foreign policy will likely be the usual forever wars driven by neoconservative agendas disguised by appeals to American exceptionalism and national security. In short, much like Obama, but more conservative (if such a thing is possible).
Friends like to send me appeals to vote for Joe, because Trump is basically a blustering ignoramus who doesn’t care how much damage he does, as long as he remains in office (and thus can call himself a “winner” while enriching himself further). They argue that Joe will be open to progressive ideas after the election, or at the very least will respond to progressives when pressured.
It’s nice fairy tale, where somehow things end happily ever after, but it’s just that. A fairy tale.
As I wrote to one friend about voting for Joe:
It’s all so depressing. This is what the corporate-bought DNC is counting on. Vote for Joe — he’s not quite as bad as Trump. And you have no other choice.
And if Joe wins, forget about Progressive initiatives, as Joe pivots, i.e. caves, to the Republicans in the (false) name of bipartisanship and “reaching across the aisle.”
And, just after I sent that, I saw this image of Joe and Mike Pence at a 9/11 event:
As I said to my friend, Nothing wrong with voting for Joe — but this is what’s going to happen if he wins. We get a moderate Republican — bought and paid for — instead of a lazy egomaniac named Trump.
What a “choice”!